In this article, Cameron Carver details the birds that make three isolated west Texas mountain ranges special. Explicit directions and detailed maps of the Chisos, Davis, and Guadalupe mountains will help you find the region’s most-desired birds should you be fortunate enough to visit this beautiful corner of the United States. Of course, Colima Warbler is the region’s main draw for many visiting birders, but Lucifer Hummingbird, Montezuma Quail, and Varied Bunting are major lures, too.

Towering high above the surrounding Chihuahuan Desert, three Texas mountain ranges draw a variety of birders, from the casual enthusiast to the hardcore lister. The Chisos Mountains of Big Bend National Park are the biggest attraction, as they are the only place in the ABA Area where Colima Warbler can easily and reliably be found. Meanwhile, the Davis and Guadalupe Mountains (along with the Chisos) offer birds more often associated with Southeast Arizona and the Rockies than Texas. Here a short guide to these three mountain ranges—or sky islands. Each offers something different, from Mexican Jay in the Chisos Mountains to Montezuma Quail in the Davis Mountains to Juniper Titmouse in the Guadalupes. At the beginning of each section, you will find web links to additional information. When planning your next great birding adventure to the Southwest, don’t overlook Texas’s sky islands.

Texas’s Sky Islands

Cameron Carver

Birder’s Guide – Vol. 28 No. 1 March 2016

Full article available (free!) in flipbook format.