RIO GRANDE VALLEY, Texas (ValleyCentral) — Well, it may not feel like it, but the first day of fall officially arrives on September 23.
This weekend marks the beginning of autumn or fall; a changing of season betwixt summer’s sizzling heat and the foreboding chill of winter.
With temperatures dipping into the low 100s, autumn’s arrival will not bring much relief from summer’s scorching heat, and unfortunately, abnormally dry conditions prevail throughout South Texas.
Despite extreme heat and lack of rainfall, seasonal change is in the air, as throughout the Rio Grande Valley colorful songbirds are flitting through backyards while overhead first waterfowl of the season are winging it south.
Southernmost coastal Texas is the most important migratory corridor in North America, with literally hundreds of millions of birds funneling through the area.
Some birds, like the vast majority of Ruby-throated hummingbirds passing through now, don’t overwinter in the RGV.
Others, like White pelicans that are just starting to arrive, may spend winter on Valley resacas.
While migratory birds soar southward, native White-tailed deer are shedding their velvet revealing newly hardened antlers.
The autumnal season signals decreasing daylight triggering hormonal changes in white-tailed bucks. Blood flow to their growing antlers becomes restricted, and with falls imminent arrival they begin scraping off the velvet-like sheath encasing newly formed antlers.
Soon, haunting calls of wild geese and Sandhill cranes will echo through wildlands, as autumnal season slips into winter, but migratory waterfowl may not linger if freshwater sources continue to vanish.
It is a magical time of transition to be in the thrall of nature, and there is no better place to savor fall than the Rio Grande Valley, but it sure would enhance seasonal shift if Mother Nature provided much-needed rainfall.