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Birding Around Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs
Birding Around Las Vegas, Urban Las Vegas Valley
Birding Around Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs
 
Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs

Description

Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs is located on the broad, flat northwestern edge of the Las Vegas Valley. Although the overall lay of the land is open and flat, the main park area sits on low rolling hills that are the result of spring deposits (mud) that have built up over the millennia.

Springs that emerge on park property feed four small lakes and provide water for groves of trees and expansive lawns. Beyond the built up area, the park stretches out into the open desert, encompassing a total of 2,040 acres.

Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs

This area once was a desert oasis far beyond the edge of town, but urban sprawl has swallow it up, and Floyd Lamb is now an urban park near the edge of town. However, the park still protects open space, four small lakes, groves of trees, and typical grassy urban-park-type areas. As town grows, this area (perhaps like Central Park in New York City) will become increasingly valuable as a place for people and wildlife to seek refuge from urban life.

Beyond the main park area, the lands have been developed as a floodwater retention basin with hiking trails around the edge.

Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs

This area was used by large prehistoric mammals, and the fossilized remains of several species (e.g., horses, camels, giant sloths, mammoths, and bison) have been found. The area later was used by Native Americans and then by white travelers. The area was "settled" and used for cattle and dude ranching, and the remains of these activities are now protected as the Tule Springs Ranch Historic Area. In 1964, the ranch became public land.

Activities in the park include bird watching, fishing, learning about local and prehistoric history, picnicking, and walking. The lakes are open for fishing (stocked with catfish during summer and trout during winter; bass and sunfish all year). Facilities include picnic areas with covered tables and grills, restrooms, group picnic areas, and paved paths that wind through the main park area.

Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs

Location

Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs is located in the northwest part of Las Vegas, about 15 miles (20 minutes) from downtown.

From downtown, drive north on Highway 95 to Durango Road. Exit the highway and turn right onto Durango. At this point, Durango runs diagonally to the northeast. Follow Durango as it curves to the left (north) and continue for about half-a-mile to Brent Lane. Watch for brown park signs. Turn right onto Brent Lane and drive east into the park (Table 1, Site 0587).

Link to map.

Floyd Lamb Park

Hours

The park is open daily. During winter, hours are 9 AM to 5 PM. During summer, hours are 8 AM to 8 PM. The closing time varies during the years, generally matching sunset.

Fees

Admission costs $6 per vehicle per day. Annual permits are available.

Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs
Cottonwood trees and riparian area at the outflow

Specialties

Check the ponds for domestic and wild waterfowl (various ducks and geese), Double-crested Cormorant, and Pied-billed Grebe; check the tule marshes for Yellow-headed Blackbird, Redwing Blackbird, Marsh Wren, and wading birds (Great Blue Heron, Green Heron); and check the trees and shrubs for black phoebe, warblers, towhees, and sparrows. Owls (Great Horned Owl) can sometimes be seen in the trees, and Greater Roadrunners prowl the picnic areas. Large numbers of sparrows can be found on the mowed lawns around the ponds and on the grassy edges of the ponds. A fair number of peacocks roam the park grounds too. This is also a good place to see dragonflies.

During winter, the ponds are good for waterfowl, grebes, and wading birds. In summer, check the trees for sparrows, warblers, flycatchers, and other passerines. Migration is a busy season. Check the trees for migrants, especially eastern migrant warblers, and check the grassy edges for sparrows.

Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs
When walking around, check the trees carefully; you never know who might be looking down on you

With the urban sprawl, the bird mix should change. It will be interesting to see who comes and who goes, but there probably will be fewer desert species as these birds retreat northward ahead of the housing developments.

Tule Springs is one of the best Pleistocene paleontology sites in Western North America, so be sure to read the signs and contemplate life we some 20,000 years ago when the environment was wetter than today.

For More Information

Visit the official park website or write the park at: Floyd Lamb Park, 9200 Tule Springs Road, Las Vegas, NV 89131. Download the park brochure (pdf).

Floyd Lamb
Floyd Lamb Park entrance gate on Brent Lane (view E)
Floyd Lamb
Floyd Lamb Park entrance station; pay fee here (view NE)
Floyd Lamb
Shade structure along trail in floodwater detention area
Floyd Lamb
Foot bridge along trail in floodwater detention area
Floyd Lamb Park
Tule Springs Lake (view N)
Floyd Lamb Park
Tule Springs Lake (view NE)
Floyd Lamb Park
Mulberry Lake (view NE)
Floyd Lamb Park
Paved trail (view NE)
Floyd Lamb Park Floyd Lamb Park
Floyd Lamb Park
Mulberry Lake, southeast corner (view SW)
Floyd Lamb
Double-crested Cormorant at Tule Springs Lake
Floyd Lamb Park
Peacock (Indian Peafowl)
Floyd Lamb Park
Canada Goose family
Floyd Lamb
Waddled Chinese Goose
Floyd Lamb
Up close with a juvenile Pied-billed Grebe
Floyd Lamb
Neotropic Cormorant
Floyd Lamb
Neotropic Cormorant and two Double-crested Cormorants
Floyd Lamb
Cooper's Hawks nest at Floyd Lamb Park
Floyd Lamb Park
Be sure to watch Dragonflies too!

 
Table 1. Highway Coordinates (NAD27; UTM Zone 11S). Download Highway GPS Waypoints (*.gpx) file.

Site # Location Latitude (°N) Longitude (°W) UTM Easting UTM Northing Elevation (feet) Verified
0587 Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs 36.3238 115.2664 655614 4021054 2,490 Yes

 
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© 2014 Jim Boone; Last updated 120901

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