McALLEN – In the United States, there is no better area for bird-watching than the Rio Grande Valley. Many birds cross into the US and fly no farther north than South Texas. Join us Thursday evening, Nov. 17, at 6:00 p.m. as Roy Rodriguez from Texas Parks and Wildlife talks about "The Next New Bird."

Rodriguez is a lifelong Texan, hunter and fisherman working as a Naturalist at Bentsen State Park, TPWD, in Mission. His passion for bird ecology and environmental education has taken him from the Arctic Circle in Barrow, Alaska to the shores of South Korea on the Yellow Sea.  Roy is committed to fostering awareness and appreciation for the unique wildlife among the culturally and economically diverse communities of the Valley. Rodriguez is a Charter member of the Rio Grande Valley Chapter of Texas Master Naturalists, as well as a Hawk-watch volunteer instructor and canoe guide on the Rio Grande.  He is also lead instructor for the National Hispanic Environmental Council scholarship institutes.

The Valley is famous for many specialties occurring here and nowhere else in the United States. Birders throughout the world log onto the "Rare Bird Alert" in the Rio Grande Valley. In fact John Vanderpoel, from Colorado, is on the chase across North America this year to try and beat the 1998 record featured in the "Big Year" movie. He is hoping to get on a plane and head south as soon as the "Next New Bird" is spotted!

The McAllen Great Outdoor Nature Series takes place Thursday evenings through April 2012 and is proudly sponsored by Thurmond Eye Associates.

The program fee is $2 per person and no advance reservation is required. Quinta Mazatlan, the McAllen Wing of the World Birding Center, is located at 600 Sunset in McAllen, one block south of La Plaza Mall on 10th Street. For more information contact Quinta Mazatlan at 956-681-3370 or visit www.quintamazatlan.com.