U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service logo A Unit of the National Wildlife Refuge System
Banner graphic displaying the Fish & Wildlife Service logo and National Wildlife Refuge System tagline

Lower Rio Grande Valley
National Wildlife Refuge

3325 Green Jay Road
Alamo, TX   78516
E-mail: christine_donald@fws.gov
Phone Number: 956-784-7500
Visit the Refuge's Web Site:
Gray horizontal line
  Wildlife and Habitat

Continued . . .

During migration, species from the Central and Mississippi flyway converge in the Lower Rio Grande Valley. They avoid flying too far east (over the Gulf Coast) or too far west (over the desert) and end up funneling through this four county area. In addition, many birds from South and Central America reach the northernmost extent of their range on the Rio Grande.

The 520+ documented bird species of this region include neotropical migratory birds, shorebirds, raptors and waterfowl. The plain chachalaca, green jay, great kiskadee, red-billed pigeon, Altamira oriole, ringed kingfisher and many other species exclusive to this area make this region a premier bird watching destination.

Four converging climates (temperate, desert, coastal and sub-tropical), a 365 day growing season and the rich soils of the Rio Grande delta have resulted in a documented 1,200 plant species within this four county area. This plant diversity is what supports the many species of birds and butterflies that can only be found here. Visitors to the area will marvel at the diversity of plants and the wildlife they support. Butterflies don't have to worry about frosts and hibernation here. On fall days, many butterfly watchers have counted more than 65 species. The lower Rio Grande Valley is considered one of the best butterfly watching areas in the United States with approximately 300 documented species and many species that cannot be seen elsewhere in the United States. This is because many species come up from Mexico and reach their northernmost range here. The Julia and Zebra heliconians, Silver-banded Hairstreak and Red-bordered Pixie are just a few of the species you will find here.

- Back -