Snowy Egret. Photo by Bill and Sharon Draker, 2009 Coastal Bend Wildlife Photo Contest.

Bird Collection

The Welder Wildlife Foundation bird collection is the largest of our vertebrate collections. It consists of two categories of specimens, scientific study skins and taxidermy specimens. Most of the study skins have been collected on the Refuge or within the region. This collection totals 2,316 birds representing 545 species from 21 orders. Interesting specimens include the scissor-tailed flycatcher (Tyrannus forficatus), painted bunting (Passerina ciris), and green jay (Cyanocorax yncas). Approximately 300 study skins were added to the collection with the donation of the Roy W. Quillin egg collection. The second category consists of taxidermy specimens acquired through a generous donation by Donald E. Bowman. The collection contains 405 specimens, 300 of which are currently housed at the Foundation. One hundred sixty-eight species of birds are represented in this group. The Bowman collection contains two extinct species, the passenger pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius), and heath hen (Tympanuchus cupido cupido).