Nesting Tricolored Herons and other waterbirds on Chester Island in Matagorda Bay Photo: Alexis Baldera/Audubon Texas
Since 1923, Audubon Texas has managed and protected bird rookery islands along the Texas Coast. We established our first bird sanctuary at Green Island in 1923, and today we lease or own 177 islands along the coast. In partnership with the Coastal Bend Bays and Estuaries Program and Houston Audubon Society, we steward these islands by patrolling and monitoring bird populations during nesting season and managing the habitat during the non-nesting season. Audubon-managed island sanctuaries are home to 20+ species of colonial waterbirds, and the majority of waterbirds that nest along the Texas coast nest on an Audubon-owned or -leased island.
Our coastal sanctuaries host the largest Reddish Egret and Roseate Spoonbill colonies in the world. Stretching over 367 miles, the Texas coastal eco-region provides wintering grounds and stop over sites for over 98% of the long-distance migratory bird species in North America. The coast faces mounting challenges from erosion, loss of habitat and increased storm impacts. It is our goal at Audubon Texas that we will maintain existing coastal habitats and build and expand improved or new bird habitats to sustain populations into the future. We are also focused on linking the choices we make inland to their impacts and quality of Texas coastal habitats. Audubon's coastal management program has been recognized through the Governors' Blue Ribbon Committee on Environmental Excellence.
Program will support our work to create more rookery islands in Matagorda Bay for nesting waterbirds