Frontera invites public to observe 200 turkey vultures en masse

WESLACO — Why are they here; why are there so many; do they scare other birds away; are they harmful to the habitat?

These are among the more frequently asked questions Sarah Williams-Salazar fields about the presence of turkey vultures and hawks in the area during this time of year.

Salazar, however, assures that these birds of prey elicit more wonderment than worry.

“They come down really low, roosting in the thicket, and you can hear their wings flap — so they are kind of ominous and spooky, I’ll admit it, but it’s because they’re so unassuming,” Salazar, executive director of the Frontera Audubon Society, said about the species of vultures. “People enjoy seeing the bats in Austin, and I kind of liken it to that, because it’s en masse and even though they’re not necessarily the most favorable of species, it’s just really cool to see them all together like that.”

The public will have the opportunity to participate in a turkey vulture and hawk watch, which is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on Thursday. The event will be hosted by Frontera, located at 1101 S. Texas Blvd. in Weslaco, and presented by Bill Clark, an author, researcher and photographer who has written a raptor field guide for Europe.

Those interested in attending are encouraged to arrive at 4:30 p.m. and gather on the Frontera lawn behind the historic Skaggs House. For more information, call 956-968-3275.

For the rest of this story and many other EXTRAS, go to our premium site,

Subscribe to it for only $6.99 per month or purchase a print subscription and receive the online version free, which includes an electronic version of the full newspaper and extra photo galleries, links and other information you can’t find anywhere else.