U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service logo A Unit of the National Wildlife Refuge System
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National Wildlife Refuge

1 Wildlife Circle
Austwell, TX   77950
E-mail: Laura_Bonneau@fws.gov
Phone Number: 361-286-3559
Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
Aransas NWR is the wintering location for the last migrating population of whooping cranes.
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  Wildlife and Habitat

Continued . . .

On their journey between North and Central America, warblers concentrate on the refuge from mid-April to early May. Mild winters, bay waters, and abundant food supplies attract over 400 species of birds to Aransas including pelicans, herons, egrets, spoonbills, shorebirds, ducks, and geese. The endangered whooping crane makes these same saltwater marshes their winter feeding grounds. Productive tidal flats provide clams and crabs for the whoopers to eat.

One of the rarest creatures in North America, the whooping crane is making a comeback from a low of 16 birds in 1941. The only naturally migrating flock of whooping cranes nests in northern Canada during the summer. They spend their winters along the Texas coast at Aransas National Wildlife Refuge. These cranes can usually be seen from the observation tower from late October to mid-April.

Moving inland, the water changes from salty flats to freshwater ponds. These ponds teem with life. Created by rain and ranging in size from puddles to lakes, they are a haven for alligators, turtles, frogs, snakes, and birds.

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