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Mike Austin

Mike-AustinMike grew up in southwestern Ontario, Canada and has been birding since the age of seven. He lived in British Columbia for a short time while completing his medical internship, then practiced in Ontario for a short time. He moved to the Upper Texas Coast in 1978 & has lived here since.

Mike has traveled extensively in North America, building a life list over eight hundred species and around the state of Texas, with a state list over 570. More recently, he has become interested in tropical birds and has traveled to several countries in the American and southeast Asian tropics.

He has regularly participated in Breeding Bird Surveys and Christmas Bird Counts (he is compiler of the Freeport count) since moving to Texas. He has lectured and led field trips for Houston Audubon, the Houston Outdoor Nature Club, the Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival, Galveston’s Featherfest, the Texas Ornithological Society, and the American Birding Association. He ran the North American Rare Bird Alert for the Houston Audubon Society for fourteen years and wrote a column for A.B.A.’s “Winging It” magazine during that time.

Mike has musical training in church choir as a youth & as a lead in the musical “Camelot” in college. This led naturally to an interest in bird vocalization. Currently, he is familiar with most of the songs & calls of the 700 or so regularly occurring North American birds. He also enjoys recording bird sounds.

Mike lives on two wooded acres in Friendswood in extreme northwestern Galveston County and enjoys trips to his cottage on Lake Erie near the gates of Point Pelee National Park, Ontario.

Upcoming Events

April 2018
April 19 @ 8:00 am - 12:30 pm

FeatherFest favorite Glenn Olsen is so much fun to bird with that we decided to add a trip where he will concentrate on just Galveston Island! We’ll let Glenn decide where he wants to go depending on what he’s scouted out before the festival. He’ll check out Corps Woods, Lafitte’s Cove, the East End Flats, Sportsman Road and sites all the way to San Luis Pass so that he’ll be able to take you to all the best birding spots…

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April 20 @ 6:00 am - 2:00 pm

Photo: Dave Williams We are pleased to offer a very special birding adventure with one of the worlds foremost birders (or in his own words “bird lover”), our own Victor Emanuel! Join Victor on a trip to one of the finest migratory locations in North America – the western end of the Bolivar Peninsula. Here are the Houston Audubon Horseshoe Marsh and Bolivar Flats bird sanctuaries. This combination of salt marsh, mud flats and beachfront hold the highest rated designation…

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April 21 @ 6:00 am - 2:00 pm

Birding Bolivar is Dick Peake’s favorite local event! Guests will explore various habitats on the peninsula, e.g., sand flats, grassy prairies, jetties, tidal sloughs, wooded lots, and Fort Travis. The Bolivar sand flats area is known as one of the finest migratory locations in North America for shorebirds, terns, herons, egrets and other water birds. It is a designated habitat for the protection of the endangered, wintering Piping Plover. Targets: Expect to see at least 80 – 100 species! For…

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April 22 @ 8:30 am - 12:30 pm

Participants new to coastal birding and novice birders will find this workshop and field trip the perfect opportunity to learn about songbirds. The workshop will focus on identification of wintering and early migrating songbirds seen on the Upper Texas Coast. Slides of common songbirds found this time of year will be presented and tips on becoming a better birder will be shared. After the workshop, you’ll have the perfect opportunity to put what you’ve learned to practice on an easy-going…

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