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Raptors fly through Texas on fall migration; learn more at program

Red-tailed hawks are one of the many raptors found in Texas and the Highland Lakes. Byron Stone, a birder with more than 40 decades of experience, will present a program during the Highland Lakes Birding and Wildflower Society meeting Sept. 1 on ‘Fall Migrant Raptors of Texas.’ The meeting starts at 9:30 a.m. at the Marble Falls Public Library, 101 Main St. The public is welcome. Photo by Byron Stone

MARBLE FALLS — The monarch butterfly migration garners much well-deserved attention. But there’s another migration, one that occurs during the fall, that might go unnoticed — though the creatures are hundreds of times larger than the butterfly.

The fall hawk, or raptor, migration takes hundreds of thousands of these birds from their North American breeding grounds to their wintering grounds, usually in the southern reaches of the continent or as far south as South America.

And Texas lines up right on the raptors’ migration route.

On Sept. 1, the Highland Lakes Birding and Wildflower Society is hosting Byron Stone, a noted birder and raptor expert, to discuss this fall event. Stone leads birding tours, including a mid-October field trip for the society to the Texas Coast to observe the fall migration. “Fall Migrant Raptors of Texas” is at 9:30 a.m. at the Marble Falls Public Library, 101 Main St. The event begins with the regular meet-and-greet with Stone taking over at 10 a.m.

The public is invited to attend the meeting and learn about this incredible migration.

Stone, a physician, began birding about four decades ago and has traveled across Texas and North America viewing birds and wildlife. He helped create SparrowFest, a winter celebration of sparrow abundance and diversity at the Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge, where he also leads birding tours.

He is the president of the Texas Ornithological Society and serves on the Texas Bird Records Committee.

The Sept. 1 program will feature photographs, identification tips and observations about behavior, conservation and biology of the nearly two dozen diurnal raptors that are regularly seen in the fall migration in central and south-central Texas.

There is no charge to attend the society meeting. Email Margy Butler at for more information on the meeting and the Highland Lakes Birding and Wildflower Society.

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There are 2 comments.

Sean —
Saw about 300 plus heading south over Lewisville Tx yesterday. Quite a magnificent sight.
A Hix —
Saw couple hundred raptors heading north northwest from Boerne on August 2016.

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