Flora & Fauna

February 14, 2015

How this Little Fellow Generates Thousands of Dollars for the RGV

Estero Llano Grande

Some people don’t know the impact a rare bird sighting can have on a community. Seldom does the news reach the local media like they did a couple of years ago when an Amazon Kingfisher was spotted during the RGV Birding Festival creating excitement and havoc.

This cute little fellow’s  name is Gray-crowned Yellowthroat and was  photographed by Estero Llano Grande Park Host Dave Elder. Yesterday I visited the park that was still filled with people wanting to catch a glimpse of this little guy.  While there I found out what those of us in the tourism/destination management folks know too well; this is a very fortunate circumstance, for birders from all over the USA  - and sometimes even other countries – flock here to see the area’s rare visitor for themselves. 

I heard people from Florida came last week, and some even drove all the way from Minnesota to see this bird not to mention nearby cities in Texas. These visitors purchase airline tickets, use taxis or rent cars and hotel accommodations. They love to eat at our local Mexican restaurants – food is a big part of our charm – and some might even do some shopping. Visitors purchase gas and food. and most importantly. they discover the Valley’s culture. The economic impact of this rare bird sighting is well in the thousands of dollars. And this is only a particular circumstance that adds to the total  economic impact of nature tourism in the Valley which reaches the millions of dollars.

South Texas Nature is the group in which I feel honored to serve as director. Our main goal is to promote the Valley’s natural resources outside of the state and in Europe. Tourism professionals from the Valley understand that we cannot succeed in the destination competition without a joint effort, but it is also important to share stories like these so Valley folks can help out.

We are experiencing amazing warm weather. Why not consider visiting one of the many nature parks in the area? Find out what birding in South Texas is all about!

 

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About the Author

Nydia O
A bird does not sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song.-Maya Angelou. La Vida Valle is where I write about "la vida" my life in the Rio Grande Valley. From this bi-cultural corner on the tip of Texas, I share my poems and spiritual and travel experiences. I also blog about the arts, nature and my passion for historic preservation and architecture. But most importantly, let's talk about "la vida" - living our lives - in a vacation state of mind. Contributions and comments are always welcome .




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