Along the Natchez Trace

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Hundreds of Egrets....

As I wrote in my last post, we finished our service at Cameron Prairie NWR and it was time to move on.  Of course I have some photos of the great folks we worked with there, but I'll save them for a later post.

Today I want to write about Avery Island, Louisiana.  If you know about it at all you'll be thinking "Tabasco Sauce".  And yes, that is exactly where they make those wonderful hot sauces.  Of course we took the tour, but because we're now dry-camped at a Walmart in Natchez, Mississippi and I'm relying on either batteries or generator for electric source, again... the tour post will be later.

This time (okay, we've been here a time or so before) we took the tour of Jungle Gardens.  One of the sons of the original McElhinney family was a naturalist who wanted to help preserve the habitat for the herons and other birds and wildlife.

I can't tell you how many times I've spoken to school groups, telling them some of the history of the National Wildlife System, which was established in 1903 by Teddy Roosevelt.  At that time ladies wore fancy hats...  and often those hats had lots of beautiful feathers adorning them.  So many feathers were harvested that the birds who were killed to provide these feathers were becoming endangered.

Look at the beauty...  the exquisite loveliness of those feathers!
Yeah, they look great on ladies hats, but don't they look so much better on their original owner?

On Jungle Island there is a huge rookery...
Just in these roosting platforms, Bill estimated well over 500 egrets.  And around the corner from this were many more birds.

We were even fortunate enough to be able to spot several chicks...
Fuzzy, awkward little critters...  almost prehistoric in their being.

There was a lot to see on the drive...
We stopped and walked some of the trails.  One trail led to this pagoda where a budda was residing.  This little temple was overlooking a lake. 

The grounds of the area were meticulously landscaped....  
showing  off many of the live oaks whose branches were bending over the ground.

Of course everyone wants to see the roseate spoonbills....
Guess this could be a good "the end" shot....  darned thing flew away just as I was about to snap its picture.

I started this post when we got back from our tour of the rookery, but since we didn't have internet I'm very far behind on both posting and reading other blogs.

I'll catch up soon...  but for now...
That's All For Today!


  1. Thank you for including history with your posts. It's so interesting. The egrets are beautiful and so are the spoonbills and so are you and your husband, beautiful people!

  2. I like your new header. I like the lushness (I typed lusciousness before I noticed!) of Louisiana. I like roseate spoonbills. I love egrets. They haven't stopped by me yet, on their way to Lake Erie.

  3. We've really got to get back to birding in Spain!

  4. What a beautiful place! I do enjoy following along with your travels.

  5. Hubby and I were there last year around this time or a tad earlier. The grounds are amazing and the rookery a sight to behold. Also, they produce some of the best sauces! Thanks for sharing your trip there and your lovely photos!

  6. That is a whole lotta' Egrets!! It is wonderful that they constructed and maintain those nesting platforms!

  7. I have had egrets and herons in my swamp. Love to watch them, they seem so proud and majestic.

  8. That is a lot of birds, we have done the Tabasco tour a couple times but never the Jungle Gardens maybe next time.

  9. Thanks for the background. I didn't really occur to me that birds were slaughtered for the feathers. I suppose I just assumed that fallen feathers were used. Yes, I'm naive. The things we did in the name of fashion! So much nicer on the bird than on a human head.