Clear Lake/Bay Area Houston/NASA

Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge

Brazoria NWR, County Road 227 Freeport, TX 77541 Map It
  • Address:
    Brazoria NWR, County Road 227
    Freeport, TX 77541

Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge, a freshwater slough winding through salt marshes, offers rare, native bluestem prairie that graces the uplands. Brazoria NWR is on a key location on the Texas Gulf, which helps Freeport draw one of the highest Audubon Christmas bird counts in the nation--more than 200 species. In winter, more than 100,000 snow geese, Canada geese, pintail, northern shoveler, teal, gadwall, American wigeon, and mottled ducks fill the plentiful ponds and sloughs to capacity. Sandhill cranes join in, too. In summer, birds that nest on the refuge include ten species of herons and egrets, white ibis, roseate spoonbill, mottled duck, white-tailed kite, clapper rail, horned lark, seaside sparrow, black skimmer, and scissor-tailed flycatcher.

Look for alligators year-round on Big Slough and in refuge ponds. In dry seasons, their trails thorough the mud and excavated gator holes are easy to spot. Roseate spoonbills capture the pink glow of sunrise in their wings in flight. Those same rosy feathers proved a near death sentence when demand for feather hats decimated spoonbills, great egrets, and other fine-feathered fowl until plume hunting ended before World War I.

More than 300 bird species, central flyaway migratory waterfowl in winter and neotropical migratory songbirds, create one of the highest audubon bird counts in the nation in freshwater marshes, sloughs, and ponds. There are four thousand acres of native coastal bluestem prairie, designated an internationally significant shorebird site by the Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network, with birds including roseate spoonbills, herons, yellow rails, ibis, and other wading and shorebirds. There are also alligators, upland birds, coyotes, and armadillos.

Waterfowl hunting is permitted on Christmas Point and Middle Bayou. Fishing is available year round, and bank fishing for redfish, spotted sea trout, black drum, and flounder is found at Clay Banks and salt lake area. During the winter, wildlife observation is popular for Audubon/Freeport bird count of Teal Pond, Rogers Pond, Middle Bayou, Big Slough, and Mottled Duck Marsh.
* Photography
* Visitor Center/Environmental Education Center
* Birding
* 2 Boat ramps
* Fishing
* Hiking
* Visitor Center/Environmental Education Center
* Wildlife observation
* TEKS-aligned lessons.


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