Wildlife in The Woodlands

Life in The Woodlands brings the discovery and adventure of nature to our back door. The 1,800-acre George Mitchell Nature Preserve and more than 3,000 acres of open space reserves provide habitat for a diverse wildlife population. Many local species, like opossums, armadillos and hummingbirds, are unique to the Americas.

Nature photography, critter watching and butterfly gardening provide countless hours of recreation to residents of all ages. The diversity of birds, including the endangered red-cockaded woodpecker, attracts birdwatchers from around the globe.

Wildlife are the native inhabitants of The Woodlands and perform a vital role in our environment. Living in harmony with foraging wildlife requires a little planning and sound property management.

Important Wildlife Phone Numbers

The Woodlands Township provides a list of important phone numbers for local agencies as a resource to community members who need assistance with wildlife issues and inquiries.

Birding Backpack Program

The Woodlands The Environmental Services Department is now offering high quality, Osprey daypacks filled with all the necessary supplies to start birding, FREE of charge to residents.

  • Who can borrow a backpack? Residents, 18 and older, may borrow a backpack for up to one week.
  • What’s included? Vortex Diamondback HD 8x32 binoculars, bird identification guides (Spanish version available), local birding checklist, park and pathways map, folding chair, and note taking supplies.
  • How do I reserve a backpack? Call 281-210-2058 to reserve a backpack for your next adventure.

Nature Lecture Series

Want to lean more about the unique species that inhabit our community? Join the Environmental Services Department for the Walk in the Woods Nature Lecture Series which features guest speakers presenting various topics ranging from bats and owls to hummingbirds and habitat gardening.

Honeybee Landed
  1. Egrets
  2. Feral Hogs
  3. Bees
  4. Coyotes
Graceful, long-legged water birds, egrets and herons nest communally in colonies called rookeries or heronries. Hundreds to tens of thousands of individuals representing three to five species come together during nesting season from late winter through mid summer. Despite abundant natural habitat, colonial nesting waterbirds have created a rookery in the Wedgewood Forest area. When wildlife loses its innate fear and adapts to close contact with humans, problems arise.

Egret Problem and Solution

Despite abundant natural habitat, colonial nesting waterbirds have created a rookery in the Wedgewood Forest area. When wildlife loses its innate fear and adapts to close contact with humans, problems arise.
  • In 2008, the colony had over 100 nests and an estimated 500 birds.
  • Noise and odor from the volume of guano, regurgitated food and fallen nestlings are a nuisance and may pose a health concern.
  • In December, birds begin nesting in tall trees, usually returning to a previous site with growing numbers each year.

Before egg laying, birds can be persuaded to move. In consultation with wildlife biologists, Parks and Recreation Department developed an Action Plan:
  • Old nests were removed and trees were pruned at Wedgewood Park. Residents were advised to do likewise.
  • When birds arrive, a combination of low-impact methods in a highly randomized pattern will be used to make the area undesirable to them.
  • Broadcasting distress and predator calls, laser lights and water may be used to discourage nesting in the residential area.
  • Some noise is unavoidable.

What You Can Do


It is impossible to predict where the egrets and herons will go. Residents should monitor tall trees, particularly at dawn and dusk. To persuade birds to move, try these techniques: making loud noises (banging pots and pans, drums, etc); using light and movement (strobe or laser lights, tennis balls tossed in air); using water (high pressure water hose, motion activated sprinklers). 

NOTE: Once birds nest, they must be left alone. 
Protected by the Federal Migratory Birds Treaty Act, nesting birds, their young, eggs and active nests cannot be disturbed in any way under penalty of law.