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Winter Introduction


October through March

 Louisiana’s coast provides winter homes to an assortment of bird species that occur in spectacular numbers or are otherwise unique. Louisiana’s mild climate supports plentiful food and shelter for winter visitors. Many species choose Louisiana’s coast as the terminus of their fall migration and do not continue any further south; others may end up in Louisiana accidentally. Louisiana’s typical mild winter combined with the opportunity to see huge numbers of birds makes this an exciting time of the year.

The rice-growing areas of the state abound with ducks and geese. It is not unusual to encounter several flocks during the course of one day that contain thousands of individual Snow and White-fronted geese; the sight and sound of these flocks lifting from a field is not easily forgotten. Similar waterfowl spectacles can be seen during winter at our State and National Wildlife Refuges. And, other birds such as raptors, shorebirds, and songbirds are also plentiful. The Mississippi River Delta and Grand Isle are great places to look for individuals that got trapped at the ‘end of the world,’ flycatchers, warblers, and other species that should have continued farther south, making ‘rare’ birding during winter exciting in these areas.

Hummingbird gardening is very popular in the state, with an emphasis on attracting unusual species or numbers of individuals from late fall through early spring, and southern hospitality is eagerly offered to visitors and residents alike interested to see hummingbirds or the gardens they inhabit.