November 5 -9 finds Harlingen swimming with birders from all around the country - they're here to take part in the Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival. I'm just a backyard birder - but every two or three years I sign up for one of the festival trips. This year I have a canoe trip on the Rio Grande in my sights. I've always wanted to boat down the river - and with that ridiculous border fence being constructed, this may be the last opportunity to see the river like it is today.
Birds and butterflies are a couple of the bonuses to gardening. First, your landscape attracts them to your garden and second, you are physically out there to see and enjoy them. I do not take pictures of wildlife (would need to invest in a big lens and learn a few new tricks) - but this hummer perched on a Frangipani, Plumeria rubra was the perfect subject.
I can't say the same for this Black Bellied Whistling Duck and Ducklings below. Every evening, this mom and her mate had their ducklings out for a swim on the resaca. I don't know what we'll see from our canoes - but fall in the Valley is a great time to be outdoors.