Wildside Weekender

Texas: Coastal Spring Bird Rookery Photography

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TOUR FOCUS
PHOTOGRAPHY

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SCHEDULED TOURS

2023 :: March 23 - March 26

TRIP LEADERS

TOUR COST

From: $2,500 (See details)
Cost is per person, double occupancy from Houston, Texas (IAH)

GROUP SIZE

3 - 4 Participants

AVAILABILITY

2023: 4 Spots Available

PRIVATE TOUR OPTION

This tour is available as a private trip for any size group. The tour cost will vary with the number of people and any custom requests.

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Highlights of Texas: Coastal Spring Bird Rookery Photography

  • Spring wading birds in their finest plumage at their coastal rookeries
  • Hands-on photo instruction with Tamron Ambassador Alyce Bender
  • Exceptional photography location in close proximity to thousands of nesting wading birds
  • Hours of birds-in-flight action in both morning and evening light
  • Part of our new Wildside Weekender series with a micro group size with limit of only 4 participants

Description of Texas: Coastal Spring Bird Rookery Photography

High Island is a premier, world-class birding location. Join us as we introduce you to the area and get you in the best locations for lots of wading birds in flight with breeding plumage! Common species to this rookery include roseate spoonbills, great egrets, cormorants, and snowy egrets. Beyond the rookery, we may be able to catch some of the early passerines returning from South America if the weather patterns are in our favor. When visiting the Anahuca National Wildlife Refuge, the species list expands to include a wide range of waterfowl, ibis, more herons and egrets, as well as a large concentration of American alligators. 

Join Alyce Bender, Tamron Ambassador, along the Texas coast in early spring to photograph some incredible wading bird rookeries while they are in their finest plumage of the year. This is a great Wildside Weekender excursion that is sure to result in great memories and outstanding images.

*Although we will eat our meals as a group, meals costs are not included in this tour.

Length of Tour

4-days/3-nights

Brief Itinerary

Day 1 – March 23rd Arrive in Houston, TX, head to lodging

Day 2-3 – March 24th – 25th Two days of photographing a wading bird rookery at close proximity and wildlife throughout Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge. 

Day 4 – March 26th We have one last sunrise session photographing a wading bird rookery before driving back into Houston to return home. 

Detailed Itinerary

 Day 1 – March 23rd Arrive in Houston, TX, head to lodging

We will meet in Houston and have a meet and greet dinner before heading to the hotel. At dinner we will discuss what to expect, photography strategies (especially for birds in flight), logistics, and ethical wildlife photography. 

Day 2-3 – March 24th – 25th Two days of photographing a wading bird rookery at close proximity and wildlife throughout Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge. 

Starting before sunrise, we head out to make the 30min drive to the rookery. Here we spend the morning photographing the wading bird rookery. Breaking for lunch, we return to photograph the rookery in the evening light. During the second full day we will head to Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge for the morning returning to the rookery for the evening.

Day 4 – March 26th We have one last sunrise session photographing a wading bird rookery before driving back into Houston to return home. 

We will pack out early, catch one last sunrise at either the rookery or the wildlife refuge (group choice) before heading back to the airport for early afternoon flights home.

Cost

Cost is $2,500 per person, based upon double occupancy, from Houston, Texas (Airport code IAH.
This trip ends in same as arrival city (Airport code IAH).

Cost Includes

Cost includes airport transfers, all ground transportation, accommodations, entrance fees and services of your professional leader(s).

Cost does not Include

Flights to/from destination city, meals, trip insurance, or anything that is not specifically mentioned in the itinerary.

Minimum Number

If fewer than the minimum number of participants registered the trip can still run with a small-group supplement fee per person determined by the number of participants.

 

Single Supplement

If a single hotel room is preferred, or we are unable to find a suitable roommate for you, a single supplement fee of $225 will be assessed.

NOTE: For boat-based tours, see pricing options for single cabins. Single cabin cost includes the single hotel cost above.

 

Minimum Number

If fewer than the minimum number of required participants are registered, we may still be able to run the trip by adding a small-group supplement fee, per person, determined by the number of participants registered.

 

Deposit Requirements

A $750 deposit per person is required to hold each space on this tour. Deposit may be made online by clicking the "Book Your Trip Now" button and using any credit card. If you prefer, you may call us at 888-875-9453 to pay by phone. You may also mail us a check, however, remember that all space is held on a first come-first served basis as deposits are received.

How to Book

In order to hold your space, click the "Book Your Trip Now" button above and complete the deposit process, including payment of the deposit through our Paypal portal using ANY CREDIT CARD. Upon completion of deposit, please visit our secure, online CLIENT INFORMATION FORM to complete your registration.

Final Payment

For all land-based tours: full payment by check is due 120 days prior to the departure date.

For all boat-based adventure cruises of 7-days or longer: full payment by check is required 180 days prior to departure.

NOTE: If you prefer to use credit card for final payment, a 3% fee may be added to cover the credit card merchant fees we incur.

This tour includes standard hotel accommodations.

Activity Level Rating: (Note: 1 is easy and 5 is difficult)

Easy – gentle walking over relatively flat surfaces of gravel, grass, sand, and boardwalks with some stairs. Longer hours of standing may be required.

Since this tour focuses on the nesting birds, telephoto lenses are going to be key to achieving the best images that require little cropping. Feel free to bring wider lenses but understand the majority of photo opportunities will be in the 300-600mm. Here are my suggestions:

• Your longest telephoto for birds and other wildlife – I use the Tamron 150-600mm G2 and highly recommend it if you are looking for a lens in this range. Anything 500mm or longer is going to create the best results. 

• A shorter telephoto such as a 70-300mm or 100-400mm for wider environmental shots – I typically carry the Tamron 18-400mm or Tamron 100-400mm for covering this range.

• Tripod for extra support of long lenses during longer field sessions. 

• Gear and trip insurance – because you never know what might happen. Working out in the elements, I always highly suggest having gear insurance as, should the worst come to pass, you want to know that at least you can replace what’s been damaged when you return home.

*Although we will eat our meals as a group, meals costs are not included in this tour.

Purchasing Flights

Do not purchase your flights until the trip has been confirmed to go.

Detailed Trip Information

Upon notification that final payment is due (120 days prior to departure for land based tours / 180 days for boat based tours), you will receive a trip package of detailed information for your tour.

Any additional information about the trip, including lodgings, contacts, participants, meeting locations, etc., will sent about 2 weeks prior to the trip departure, or after final payment is received for late registrants.

Travel Insurance

As with all tours, we highly recommend purchasing Travel Insurance to cover your investment. Please see our section on Travel Insurance.

Passport & Visa

US Citizens may require a visa to enter certain foreign countries. See above for any required visa information.

Participants arriving to the USA from a foreign country may need to get a travel visa to enter the United States. Be sure to check the requirements for your country of origin.

Itinerary Changes

The trip itinerary is developed many months ahead of time. Occasionally, despite our best planning, changes may occur during the trip, or we may be forced to alter our plans. Changes may occur because of weather, road conditions, safety concerns or other circumstances. In these situations, it is the leader(s) responsibility to carefully consider and implement appropriate alternatives. Any additional costs incurred because of changes will be the responsibility of each individual participant. Refunds will not be issued as a result of itinerary changes.

Location Map