Coyote Mercury

words, birds and whatever else by James Brush

Birds from Boliver to Galveston

Laughing Gull

Laughing Gull

Last week, after visiting Orange, we went to Galveston. We decided to take Highway 87 along Boliver Peninsula and see what was left after Hurricane Ike and then ride the Ferry over to Galveston. R and I have both spent a fair amount of time on Boliver over the years so it was shocking to see how much of it was gone. I’m not talking just houses destroyed but land that’s just not there anymore.

We watched the map on the car’s navigation showing roads leading off to the left, toward the sea, but those roads aren’t there any more. Just the gulf, much closer to the highway than I remember it being. Out on the water, we could see posts that once supported houses, now supporting pelicans.

Closer to Crystal Beach, there was much rebuilding going on. Despite the rebuilding effort, the ferries were running at reduced service so it took over an hour to get on, but when we did we were rewarded with the usual avian accompaniment, though we didn’t see any porpoises this time.

Brown Pelican following Boliver Ferry

Brown Pelican following Boliver Ferry

Among the laughing gulls, one bird stood out, but it was moving too fast for an ID. I snapped a bunch of pictures and when I got home I was able to ID him from this shot: Sandwich Tern. A lifer for me.

Sandwhich Tern

Sandwich Tern

And, because I love gulls, the squabble of laughing gulls one always finds chasing the ferry. Check out the dispute in the last one.

Squabble of Laghing Gulls 1

Squabble of Laghing Gulls 1

Squabble of Laghing Gulls 3

Squabble of Laghing Gulls 4

Squabble of Laghing Gulls 5

Squabble of Laghing Gulls 6


  1. what an excellent series of photos, especially those of the laughing gull dispute…

  2. The photo’s with the accompanying text was marvelous. The lead up to that last shot was well done.

  3. What fantastic shots, oh my goodness. All of the laughing gull shots are amazing.

  4. I can’t get enough of watching gulls. I’m glad you all enjoyed these.

  5. Wonderful gull shots. I saw my first Sandwich tern a couple of years ago in the Morbihan, and only id-ed it by a (fairly fuzzy) shot using the digital zoom after the event.

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