Festivals and Events

Birding festivals and events are an exciting experience for many avid birder watchers.

If you’re wild about wild birds, birding festivals & events are the place to be! With feathered fun for everyone, birding festivals are a wonderful way to learn about birds and connect with other birders. Meet fellow birding enthusiasts through guided tours, arts & crafts, educational seminars, talks from keynote speakers, children’s activities, vendors of bird feeders & birding products, and so much more! Fly to new heights with avian experts who answer your questions and give you birding tips & techniques to enrich your passion for birds!

Many birding festivals focus on bird species with plentiful populations in the local area, and attending festivals outside your region gives you the chance to see new birds & habitats beyond your own backyard. Your support helps birding festivals raise awareness about the importance of protecting & connecting with nature, because the more birders attend birding festivals, the more respect for nature, habitat, and the environment will spread to our communities. So take flight, expand your horizons, and explore new worlds of birds!

Droll Yankees has compiled a list of birding festivals and events:

Nov 1 to Nov 6, 2017 • Yellow Rails & Rice Festival • Jennings, LA, USA
A unique opportunity to view Yellow Rails in the working wetlands of Louisiana’s SW prairie region, well known for great birding. The festival schedule is casual: participants can (weather permitting) come and go at their leisure from harvest sites where facilitators are positioned to help spot and identify birds, provide information, and answer questions. Explore nearby birding areas or venture farther afield to search for specialty birds in other Louisiana habitats such as the piney woods, marsh, and gulf coast beaches, as well as enjoy local cuisine, and the area’s rich history and culture in the heart of Cajun Country. For more information, please contact Donna L Dittmann; 225-642-5763 (leave message), yellowrailsandrice@gmail.com.

Nov 4, 2017 • Annual Bird Fest of the Santa Monica Mountains • Calabasas, CA, USA
A day to celebrate the bird! FREE event from 9am to 3pm (early morning bird walks at 8am & 8:30am). See live birds, listen to talks from local experts, take a guided bird walk, meet representatives from bird-friendly agencies, and more! Bring the kids for special family-friendly activities. Food vendors will be on-site. Presented by Conejo Valley Audubon Society, San Fernando Valley Audubon Society, Santa Monica Bay Audubon Society, The Mountains Recreation and Conservation Authority, National Park Service, and Western National Parks Association. Contact: samo@wnpa.org or call 805-370-2301.

Nov 8 to Nov 12, 2017 • 24th Annual Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival • Harlingen, TX, USA
See why birders have been flocking to this festival for the past 23 years—great birds (at least 30 new ones if you’ve never been to the Rio Grande Valley!), fantastic professional guides, reunion-like socials, Keynotes Noah Strycker & Nathan Pieplow, workshops, huge trade show, and lots of goodies in the silent auction. We are TEXAS FRIENDLY! Visit our website for details & registration dates. For more information, please contact (209) 227-4823 or (956) 423-5565; info@rgvbf.org.

Nov 18 to Nov 19, 2017 • Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival • Mission, BC, Canada
The Annual Fraser Valley Bald Eagle Festival is a 2-day celebration of nature, increasing awareness of the bald eagle and its habitat in a fun and educational way. It’s a free family event with eagle viewing by land and by water, activity sites, and walk & talks featuring talent such as biologist David Hancock of Hancock Wildlife.org. It’s the fastest-growing eagle festival in North America, as thousands of raptors descend on the area during the salmon spawn. For more information, please contact Jo-Anne Chadwick, 604-826-7361; info@fraservalleybaldeaglefestival.ca.

Jan 11 to Jan 14, 2018 • 25th Annual Wings Over Willcox • Willcox, AZ, USA
From the rugged peaks of the Dos Cabezas & Chiricahua Mountains to the Dragoon Mountains stretches the Sulphur Springs Valley, home to a great variety of plant and animal life. This bio-diverse area from grasslands to sky islands is home to a unique mix of flora, fauna, and nearly 500 avian species. The Magic Circle of Cochise—which begins and ends in Willcox—offers the outdoor nature enthusiast the opportunity to visit some of the best birding and wildlife attractions in Southeastern Arizona. Guest speakers, seminars, workshops, birding tours, evening programs, the Nature Expo (vendors & activities for kids), and Southeastern Arizona cuisine & hospitality. For more information, please call 520-384-2272.

Jan 11 to Jan 15, 2018 • Everglades Birding Festival • Davie, FL, USA
Explore the Everglades ecosystem while searching for 150 plus species such as Snail Kite, Painted Bunting, Limpkin, Short-tailed Hawk, Red-whiskered Bulbul, and more. Full-day field trips to E.N.P., Corkscrew, Keys, STA 5, & South Florida Hotspots with lunch. A focus on gaining advanced birding skills with mini-workshops, small groups, & expert guides. Keynotes, Dinners, & Evening Programs. For more information, please contact Paddy Cunningham, 754-201-1141, birdpaddy@yahoo.com.

Jan 12 to Jan 15, 2018 • Morro Bay Winter Bird Festival • Morro Bay, CA, USA
Morro Bay, California, is a Globally Important Bird Area, located halfway between Los Angeles and San Francisco on the Pacific Flyway. Over 200 bird species have been seen during the festival weekend! Keynote Speaker George Armistead, “My Ornithologist: The Unique Life of the Birder.” Field trips, Bird Festival Bazaar, and more TBA! Registration opens early November. For more information, please contact 805-234-1170, registrar@morrobaybirdfestival.org.

Jan 18 to Jan 21, 2018 • Lake Apopka Wildlife Festival & Birdapalooza Birding Festival • Apopka, FL, USA
The Lake Apopka Wildlife Festival & Birdapalooza Birding Festival, January 18-21, 2018, is perfect for birders visiting Florida or locals wanting to learn more from knowledgeable birding guides. Add to your life list at an amazing birding area, the 20,000-acre Lake Apopka North Shore, where 360+ species have been sighted, more than any other inland location. 2 full-day trips and 9 half-day trips are offered, along with keynotes and dinners. On Saturday, participate in the 6th annual free family-oriented Birdapalooza festival with bird banding & guided bus tours. For details & registration, please visit our website or call 407-637-2525.

Jan 24 to Jan 29, 2018 • 21st Space Coast Birding & Wildlife Festival • Titusville, FL, USA
The festival is a premier event that offers opportunities for participants to explore world-renowned natural areas of Florida’s Space Coast, home of the largest collection of endangered wildlife and plants in the continental United States. Activities include field trips and outdoor workshops, an offshore birding boat trip, nature-based exhibits, an art show & competition, classroom presentations, and informal opportunities to meet national authorities on birds, plants, photography, optics, and technology. The festival has been named for many years as a “Top 20 Event” by the Southeastern Tourism Society. For more information, please call 321-268-5224 or visit our website.

Feb 7 to Feb 10, 2018 • 6th Annual Laredo Birding Festival • Laredo, TX, USA
Come bird on the border! We invite you to join us for our 6th annual Laredo Birding Festival, as we bird Laredo hotspots along the Rio Grande and riparian creek systems, as well as thousands of acres of brush land at dozens of scenic South Texas ranches. The Laredo Birding Festival offers birders an opportunity to explore and observe hundreds of species of birds, with a professional field guide on our small and intimate custom-tailored trips, with several specialty trips not to be missed. Keynote Speaker and presenters to be announced. Registration opens in mid-August. Contact 956-718-1063, laredobirdingfestival@rgisc.org.

Feb 9 to Feb 11, 2018 • Birds of a Feather Fest • Palm Coast, FL, USA
With more than 125 miles of hiking, biking, & walking trails, miles of coastline, varied habitats, and more than 200 identified species, Flagler County is a birder’s paradise. Along with such biodiversity and recreational opportunities comes something that sets our community apart—accessibility. Few places offer as many wonderful opportunities to enjoy nature while being so connected, accessible, and clean. Our parks and trails make the perfect place to host a Birding and Nature festival. For more information, please contact Jason Giraulo (event coordinator) at 386-986-2484 or jgiraulo@palmcoastgov.com.

Feb 21 to Feb 25, 2018 • San Diego Bird Festival • San Diego, CA, USA
San Diego Bird Festival is a celebration of the wild birds and habitats of San Diego County. Each year we host over 500 birders and nature lovers on more than 60 field trips, workshops, and activities for all ages. Proceeds benefit the San Diego Audubon Society and conservation & education programs throughout San Diego County. For more information, please contact Jennifer Hajj, hajj@sandiegoaudubon.org.

Feb 22 to Feb 25, 2018 • 22nd Annual Whooping Crane Festival • Port Aransas, TX, USA
The Coastal Bend is the only spot in the United States where the endangered Whooping Crane can be viewed at close range, and the Port Aransas Chamber of Commerce celebrates this astonishing natural wonder with an annual festival honoring these grand birds. In addition to the Whooping Crane, an awesome array of wintering migratory birds flock into the wetlands and onto the Texas shorelines of Mustang Island in and around Port Aransas. Birding tours by land and sea are highlights during the festival. Visitors of all ages will enjoy the many festivities during the celebration. Nature is the theme of the free trade show featuring numerous unique vendors. A wide selection of optics, paintings, photography and one-of-a-kind gift items for the nature lover in all of us will be featured. Other activities include world-renowned speakers, photography workshops and a variety of field trips.

Feb 22 to Feb 24, 2018 • 13th Annual Eagle Expo and More • Morgan City, LA, USA
The American Bald Eagle is a common visitor on the Cajun Coast. Join us to view these majestic birds perched in a tree, soaring overhead, tending their young, or hunting for food. Our annual Eagle Expo includes boat tours into various waterways to view eagles, a Birds of Prey educational program, presentations on wildlife, a walking/hiking trail, photography workshop, and keynote addresses. Admission and registration required. For more information, please email info@canjuncoast.com, or call 800-256-2931 or 985-380-8224.

Feb 24, 2018 • 23rd California Duck Days • Davis, CA, USA
California Duck Days is an annual northern California wetlands and wildlife festival, from 9am to 3pm on Saturday, February 24. It’s a terrific day for people of all ages. Families with young children tend to stay at the headquarters, enjoying many workshops and activities, while adults often like to go on half-day or full-day field trips to sites around the region. These include an educational trip to a rice farm, a tour of the Knaggs Ranch fish project in the Yolo Bypass, as well as many birding trips. Workshops throughout the day, including dog training, wood duck box building, fly tying for young anglers, and learning about bats. A falconry demonstration will be held. The Duck Days Exhibit Hall will have interactive displays from area environmental organizations and will feature the crowd-pleasing Mallard ducklings, as well as live birds of prey from the California Raptor Center, including Sullivan the Bald Eagle. One of the most popular events at Duck Days is the kids’ fishing activity sponsored by the Department of Fish and Wildlife. Children may fish for trout in the demonstration wetlands and then have their fish cleaned and refrigerated to take home. There will be a large mobile aquarium filled with local fish, including many native species, Please pre-register due to limited space on field trips. For more information, please contact the Yolo Basin Foundation at 530-7573780 or DuckDays@yolobasin.org.

Mar 2 to Mar 4, 2018 • International Festival of Owls • Houston, MN, USA
Immerse yourself in owls at the only annual, full-weekend, all-owl festival in North America. Highlights include seven species of live owls (including a Snowy Owl and a flying Barn Owl), owl prowls to call in wild owls, a birding and natural history bus trip, and learn from owl experts from around the world. Families can build an owl nest box, dissect an owl pellet, make a variety of owl crafts, buy owl merchandise, enjoy owl art and photography, and have a hoot eating owl-themed food. The whole city of Houston gets involved! For more information, please contact Karla Bloem at 507-896-6957 or karla@internationalowlcenter.org.

Mar 2 to Mar 3, 2018 • Friends of Goose Pond Marsh Madness Sandhill Crane Festival • Lincoln City Park, Linton, IN, USA
The festival begins with a Friday night dinner and an environmental keynote speaker (to be announced), with a live auction fundraiser. On Saturday, from 8am to 4 pm, there will be guided bus tours and/or self-guided tours to the Goose Pond FWA property, Birds of Prey demonstration, herpetology demonstration, breakout session by experts on owls, snakes, birds, & other environment issues, craft & information vendors, and food & refreshments on site at the Linton City Park. For more information, please contact mail@friendsofgoosepond.org or visit our website.

Mar 2 to Apr 8, 2018 • Audubon’s Rowe Sanctuary Guided Sandhill Crane Viewing Experiences • Gibbon, NE, USA
Every March, over 600,000 Sandhill Cranes converge on the Platte River valley in central Nebraska to fuel up before continuing north to their nesting grounds. One of the greatest wildlife spectacles in North America, this gathering of cranes is the largest in the world. Audubon’s Rowe Sanctuary is at the heart of this magnificent crane staging area. Rowe Sanctuary offers guided viewing experiences to see the spectacular concentrations of Sandhill Cranes. For more information about viewing options, check out our website or call 308-468-5282. Reservations are open Tuesday, January 2, 2018, 9 am CST. Online reservations: reservations.rowesanctuary.org.

Mar 3 to Mar 25, 2018 • SOAR With The Eagles • Wabasha, MN, USA
SOAR With The Eagles is the National Eagle Center’s annual festival that celebrates the spring bald eagle migration along the Mississippi River. During weekends in March, visitors enjoy a variety of special programming hosted by the National Eagle Center. The festival includes animal presentations, nationally renowned flying bird shows, environmental exhibits, demonstrations by the DNR and US Fish and Wildlife Service, Native American crafts, wild eagle viewing, and much more! There is programming for all ages and exciting opportunities to experience and learn new things about the natural world! For more information, please contact 651-565-4989 or info@nationaleaglecenter.org.

Mar 3 to Apr 2, 2018 • Crane Migration Tours • Wood River, NE, USA
Experience the magic of half a million Sandhill Cranes coming in to roost on the Platte River in the evening or waking up to greet the sun each morning on a guided viewing blind tour at the largest crane roost in the world! Speaking events follow morning tours or precede evening tours each weekend. Reservations can be made after January 4th. Reservations online or by phone. Full experience with lodging included is available. Book now as these fill quickly! See VIP experience on the website. For more information, please contact 308-382-1820 or info@cranetrust.org.

Mar 9 to Mar 11, 2018 • 34th Monte Vista Crane Festival • Monte Vista, CO, USA
Every year, like clockwork, nearly 20,000 Sandhill Cranes descend on Colorado’s scenic San Luis Valley for a six-week stopover to rest and refuel before continuing their northward spring migration. Activities during the Monte Vista Crane Festival include interpreter-led bus tours to view the cranes as well as field trips to the Great Sand Dunes National Park and Preserve, Penitente Canyon Recreational Area and tours to view local raptors. Photography workshop and more to be announced. For more information, please contact Deb Callahan, mvcfpub@gmail.com.

Mar 9 to Mar 11, 2018 • Vallarta Bird Festival • Cabo Corrientes, Jalisco, Mexico
The Vallarta Botanical Garden will host the Vallarta Bird Festival this coming March 9 to 11, 2018, and will include daily guided garden birding walks along with workshops, tours, and presentations. Tours will meet at the Garden at 7:30am and activities will go on throughout the day. Pre-registration is not required to participate in this year’s Vallarta Bird Festival, but an email to let us know how many guests to expect would be highly appreciated. The cost of admission to the Garden is $150 pesos per day, and there will be a 3-day pass available. For more information, please contact 608-886-3902 or nancycholland@gmail.com.

Mar 10, 2018 • Cape Ann Winter Birding Boat Trip • Gloucester, MA, USA
Birdwatchers from New England and beyond flock to Cape Ann each year to participate in the Cape Ann Winter Birding Weekend. Weather permitting, we are hosting the Winter Birding Boat Trip, aboard the PRIVATEER IV, with 7 Seas Whale Watch. Saturday, March 10, 2018, from 8:00am – Noon. Cape Ann is known worldwide for its exciting concentrations of Winter Seabirds, and the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce is planning a morning at sea sure to delight Birders of all levels. Expert Guides, including Wayne Petersen, the Director of the Mass. Important Bird Area Program, will help identify the Winter Birds you will see. We will visit one of New England’s most productive marine habitats: Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary. For more information, please contact Kerry McKenna of the Cape Ann Chamber of Commerce at 978-281-7857 or Kerry@capeannchamber.com.

Mar 12 to Apr 22, 2018 • 28th Annual Brant Wildlife Festival • North Vancouver, BC, Canada
Join us for the 28th annual Brant Wildlife Festival during March and April 2018. This festival celebrates nature, particularly Brant geese, on mid-Vancouver Island through many fun activities for all ages. Events range from Spring Break Nature Camps for kids to wildlife viewing opportunities and guest speakers across Parksville, Qualicum Beach, and surrounding areas. For a full list of confirmed events and for specific locations, check out our Events page. For more information, please contact Robin Rivers at 866-288-7878 (604-924-9771 ext 226) or rrivers@naturetrust.bc.ca.

Mar 17 to Mar 19, 2018 • Wings Over Water Northwest Birding Festival • Blaine, Birch Bay, & Semiahmoo, WA, USA
Join us for a birding adventure along the coastal areas of Blaine, Birch Bay, and Semiahmoo in the northwest corner of Washington State. This premiere birding area is the anchor to the North Cascade Loop of the Great Washington Birding Trail and offers the opportunity to view an abundance of bird species intimately. The festival will feature a guided field trip to Reifel Bird Sanctuary and open water birding cruises aboard the 50” Salish Sea. The all-day birding expo on Saturday provides indoor and outdoor activities for the whole family, with birding and geology field trips, wildlife speakers, live raptor presentations, exhibits, children’s activities, photography workshops, and more! For festival details, visit please our website or call Debbie Harger at 360-543-9982.

Mar 22 to Mar 25, 2018 • Audubon’s Nebraska Crane Festival • Kearney, NE, USA
Enjoy the crane migration, scientific & general talks, vendors, and guided general birding tours with Audubon’s Rowe Sanctuary. Details to come, but make a note of the date and consider your lodgings. For more information, please contact 308-468-5282 or nebraska@audubon.org.

Mar 23 to Mar 25, 2018 • 21st Othello Sandhill Crane Festival • Othello, WA, USA
For two decades we have celebrated the annual return of nearly 35,000 Sandhill Cranes to Othello, Washington, every March as they migrate north to their breeding grounds in Alaska. The Festival offers an incredible opportunity to view the cranes up-close, with tours led by local experts. The Festival also boasts other specialty tours of the flora, fauna, and geology of the area, and many lectures, as well as children’s activities. The festival has grown over the years with returning participants attending from across the country. Friday night activities to be announced, and Saturday and Sunday activities at the Othello High School, 340 Seventh Avenue, South. For more information, please contact Marie Lotz at 866-726-3445 or marie-lotz@conservewa.net.

Apr 1 to Apr 30, 2018 • A Celebration of Swans • Whitehorse, YT, Canada
Yukon’s premier birding festival brings residents and visitors alike out to great swan viewing areas to welcome spring to the North. The mass migration of tens of thousands of swans, ducks and geese is not to be missed. The Swan Haven Interpretive Centre, open daily in April, is the hub of the festival. Events include photography and art workshops, presentations, campfire storytelling, children’s activities and more. For more information, please contact 867-667-8291 or wildlife.viewing@gov.yk.ca.

Apr 5 to Apr 8, 2018 • Harney County Migratory Bird Festival • Burns, OR, USA
Spend an amazing weekend witnessing the spectacular spring migration in the Harney Basin of Southeast Oregon. View thousands of migratory birds as they rest and feed in the wide open spaces of Oregon’s high desert. From waterfowl to shorebirds, cranes to raptors, wading birds to songbirds, you’ll see it all! The festival offers nonstop birding activities as well as historical and cultural information sure to entertain you and your family. So whether you’re a beginner or a life-long wildlife enthusiast, the festival has something for everyone! Keynote speaker to be announced. For more information, please contact the Harney County Chamber of Commerce at 541-573-2636 or info@migratorybirdfestival.com.

Apr 6 to Apr 8, 2018 • Mackinaw Raptor Fest • Mackinaw City, MI, USA
Come see hawks, owls, and waterbirds as they are studied by biologists. Along with outdoor birding, enjoy indoor programs on Saturday. Keynote speakers and break-out sessions about owl research, how data from hawk counts is compiled and used. Registration begins in early January. For more information, please contact Kathy Bricker at kathynaturelover@gmail.com or 231-627-4830.

Apr 6 to Apr 8, 2018 • Nebraska Prairie Chicken Festival • Burwell, NE, USA
Our festival celebrates prairie grouse species, the grasslands they inhabit, and the culture that surrounds them. A lek tour is in the early morning with cool temps. During the festival, you will visit both a Sharp-tailed Grouse and Greater Prairie-chicken lek, have 5 meals provided, enjoy speakers and entertainment, as well as guided daytime adventures. Lodging available, but book early. Lek tours are also available March 15-April 15. For more information, please contact 3083464697 or hbswitzer@ntc.net.

Apr 13 to Apr 15, 2018 • Olympic Birdfest 2017 • Sequim, WA, USA
The North Olympic Peninsula is widely known as a great place for bird watching with a wide variety of bird species. Field trip locations include bays, fields, and wooded areas. The locations are part of the Olympic Loop of the Great Washington State Birding Trail and are known as Important Bird Areas (IBA). The Dungeness River Audubon Center in Sequim will become “Bird Central” for the festival. When you arrive we will have maps and information about the Sequim Dungeness Valley in addition to all the maps and information about the demonstrations and events offered during the festival. Keynote speaker to be announced. For more information, please contact info@olympicbirdfest.org or 360-681-4076.

Apr 13 to Apr 15, 2018 • 22nd Annual Great Louisiana BirdFest • Mandeville, LA, USA
For the past 21 years, the Northlake Nature Center has sponsored the Great Louisiana BirdFest during spring migration. This is the time when numerous migrant bird species come from Mexico and South America across the Gulf of Mexico and pass through south Louisiana on their way to their summer territories. Birders travel from all corners of the USA and from other countries to participate because our area is a prime bird-watching location, and the Great Louisiana BirdFest is considered one of the premier birding events in the country. Join us and enjoy what people travel long distances to see: this wonderful environment of Southeast Louisiana that is in our own backyard. Expert birdwatchers as well as novices are welcome to attend one or more of the available birding trips via foot, pontoon boat or paddled canoes; the social; and/or the photography workshop. For more information, please contact Rue McNeill at 985-626-1238 or birdfest@northlakenature.org.

Apr 14 to May 13, 2018 • Atlanta Bird Fest 2018 • Atlanta, GA, USA
Birds, y’all! Enjoy a full month of bird & nature-centric activities during Georgia’s largest bird festival. Events include exclusive field trips at metro-Atlanta hotspots with expert guides, a weekend coastal trip, educational workshops, special guest speakers, and more. This year’s keynote speaker will be local Georgia writer, environmental activist and naturalist Janisse Ray, author of Ecology of a Cracker Childhood and The Seed Underground. Registration will open March 1, 2018, for members of Atlanta Audubon and on March 8, 2018, for non-members. For more information, please contact Michelle Hamner at michelle@atlantaaudubon.org or 678-973-2437.

Apr 18 to Apr 24, 2018 • Godwit Days Spring Migration Bird Festival • Arcata, CA, USA
Godwit Days is held at the peak of spring migration and celebrates the thousands of shorebirds that flock to the shores of Humboldt Bay. Arcata is nestled between Humboldt Bay and Redwood forest, providing access for day trips to see Northern Spotted Owl, Marbled Murrelet, Western Snowy Plover, Black Oystercatcher, Ruffed Grouse, and other North Coast specialties. Keynote Speakers and around 100 field trips to choose from! For more information, please contact 707-826-7050 or godwitdaysreg@yahoo.com.

Apr 18 to Apr 25, 2018 • Lek Treks & More: The Lesser Prairie-Chicken Festival • Woodward, OK, USA
Join us in northwest Oklahoma to view Lesser Prairie-Chickens from blinds or vans. We offer an extended trip to view Greater Prairie-Chickens at the Tallgrass Prairie in northeast Oklahoma. Get both species of prairie-chickens in one trip! For photographers we offer special packages, with dedicated blinds and special access to the Selman Ranch. A unique feature of our festival is that everyone has an opportunity to participate in fence marking, a conservation action that is easy to do and critical to the survival of these birds. Additional field trips are scheduled to areas around northwest Oklahoma, including the Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge, Black Mesa at the end of the Oklahoma Panhandle, where the plains meet the Rocky Mountains, and the Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge, where we’ll see Black-capped Vireos. Other activities include star gazing, bat and owl watches, and workshops. Keynote speaker TBA. For more information, please contact John Kennington at 918-809-6325 or johnkennington@gmail.com.

Apr 19 to Apr 22, 2018 • 16th Galveston FeatherFest • Galveston Island, TX, USA
This event is the Island’s annual birding and nature photography festival held during spring migration. Galveston is one of the top locations in the country for birding because it hosts a wide variety of habitats in a small geographical area where some 300 species make their permanent or temporary home throughout the year. Mark your calendar now to attend the largest birding festival on the Upper Texas Coast and the only one with a dedicated nature photography track! Well known speakers and regional experts lead memorable trips (including High Island), workshops, birding & photography events, with 200+ species. For more information, please contact Julie Ann Brown, GINTC, at 409-789-8125 or info@gintc.org.

Apr 19 to Apr 22, 2018 • South Texas Birdiest Festival in America • Corpus Christi, TX, USA
Named the “Birdiest City in North America” for a decade, Corpus Christi’s location in key spring migration pathways draws in birders from around America and around the world. General admission to the festival is included with Botanical Gardens Admission ($8 for vendors, Raptor Project, and Botanical Gardens self-guided tour). Education Upgrade ($20) allows access to all seminars and guided nature walk. Separately-priced field trips available with Premium Upgrade ($35), including seminars, Thursday BBQ Dinner, and Tour registration access. For more information, please contact wmwomack@stxbot.org or 361-852-2100 x225.

Apr 20 to Apr 22, 2018 • 14th Annual Pacific City Birding and Blues Festival • Pacific City, OR, USA
Visit Pacific City on the Oregon Coast for a weekend of birding and blues music. This nonprofit community festival aims to educate as well as entertain its participants. The three days include presentations from photographers, conservationists, and bird enthusiasts, live bird exhibitions, birding field trips led by regional experts and biologists, and one night of excellent blues music. Keynote speaker to be announced. Experience spring migration like never before from dawn until well after dark at the Pacific City Birding and Blues Festival on the Oregon Coast! For more information call us at 503-965-6247 or visit our website at birdingandblues.org.

Apr 20 to Apr 22, 2018 • 18th Annual Balcones Songbird Festival • Marble Falls, TX, USA
Migrating birds consider the Texas Hill Country a sort of freeway rest stop—a way station where they can relax, catch a good meal, and gather strength for the rest of their journey. Nestled in the hill country is the 24,000-acre Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge that provides critical habitat for 2 endangered songbird migrant species—the Black-capped Vireo and the Golden-cheeked Warbler. They not only stop to rest—they stop to nest! The Balcones Songbird Festival is a celebration of nature through a collection of interpretive events to experience both bird species and their habitat. Experienced guides help you add to your life list. For more information, please contact 512-965-2473 or Friends@friendsofbalcones.org.

Apr 20 to Apr 22, 2018 • Grand Isle Migratory Bird Celebration • Grand Isle, LA, USA
See songbirds in oak-hackberry woods, shorebirds & waders on beaches and in the marshes, and raptors overhead. Grand Isle is an essential stop for songbirds during their spring and fall migrations across the Gulf of Mexico. The celebration is held annually to correspond with peak bird migration in April. For more information, please contact 985-787-2229 or email jlandry@tnc.org.

Apr 21, 2018 • Birding the Bay • Eastpoint, FL, USA
Day-long birding event on Apalachicola Bay for birders of all levels, from advanced to beginners. Professionally-led tours will focus on shorebirds, migratory birds, and/or woodland species. See colorful song birds like Indigo Buntings and Summer Tanagers on St. George Island on their migratory stop over, view shorebirds in the shallow waters around St. George Island State Park, visit the pine woodlands where the Red Cockaded Woodpecker thrives, or learn the basics of birding with Audubon at the Apalachicola National Estuarine Research Reserve (ANERR). After a morning in the field, participants will return to the Nature Center for lunch and a lecture on how to photograph birds. The afternoon will feature educational booths, a bird banding demonstration, and more! For more information, please contact 850-670-7743 or Emily.A.Jackson@dep.state.fl.us.

Apr 26 to Apr 29, 2018 • Stikine River Birding Festival • Wrangell, AK, USA
Wrangell Stikine River Birding Festival provides an ideal opportunity for all ages to celebrate the spring migration of Bald Eagles, Snow Geese, Sandhill Cranes, and thousands of shorebirds. Events are scheduled for all ages including art and photo contests, build-a-feeder, guest speakers, and of course – an opportunity to explore the surrounding islands and Stikine River flats for birds! For more information, please contact 800-367-9745 or fun@wrangellalaska.org.

Apr 26 to Apr 29, 2018 • Verde Valley Birding and Nature Festival • Cottonwood, AZ, USA
Registration begins February 1. The festival includes field trips, workshops, guided walks, seminars, exhibit hall and vendors, and more. Registration fee is $15 plus additional fees for field trips. Saturday is the free “Family Nature Fair” with games and activities for children and parents alike from 10am to 2pm at Dead Horse Ranch State Park’s river day-use area. New trips are added each year. Returning trips include kayak trips down the Verde and the popular Cadillac Canoe Brunch. Favorite field trips to local birding hot spots and trips to explore the geology of the Verde Valley with a knowledgeable guide who will describe the processes that created this amazingly unique landscape. This is an extraordinary festival for everyone, from birding beginners to experts, lovers of nature, and lovers of learning. Keynote speaker to be announced. Events fill quickly, so register as soon as possible. For more information, please contact Barbie Hart at birdyverde@gmail.com or 928-282-2202.

Apr 27 to Apr 29, 2018 • Wings Over the Hills Nature Festival • Fredericksburg, TX, USA
All things wings in the beautiful Texas Hill Country! Enjoy a variety of lecturers and birding field trips to many Hill Country hotspots with the opportunity to see Texas’ 2 endangered species: Golden-cheeked Warbler and Black-Capped Vireo. Live raptor demonstration, Hummingbird banding field trips, a photography workshop, free children’s activities, and shopping at nature-themed vendor booths. For more information, please contact Jane Crone at 218-912-5920.

Apr 27 to Apr 29, 2018 • Grays Harbor Shorebird Festival • Hoquiam, WA, USA
Each spring, hundreds of thousands of shorebirds stop to rest and feed along the Washington Coast and in the Grays Harbor estuary during their migration northward. Coming from as far south as Argentina, these Arctic-bound shorebirds are among the world’s greatest migrants. The concentration of birds during spring migration offers people a great chance to view a number of shorebird species. The shorebird spectacle happens every year at Grays Harbor National Wildlife Refuge and in other parts of the county. People from around the world come to view this event of hemispheric importance. The festival works to bring people together for this incredible natural phenomenon. For more information, please contact Jennifer Cutillo at 360-753-9467.

Apr 27 to Apr 29, 2018 • Owens Lake Bird Festival • Bishop, CA, USA
Join Friends of the Inyo for the Owens Lake Bird Festival on Owens Lake where water, vast open sky, the high rise of the Sierra Nevada, thousands of migratory birds, and the story of human presence come together to define the geography of a special place. Join local experts for birding and natural history outings on and around Owens Lake. Keynote speakers with dinner reception. Celebrate the return of thousands of migratory birds to a rejuvenated landscape at Owens Lake, a National Audubon Society designated Important Bird Area. Contact Ben Wickham, 760-873-6500, info@friendsoftheheinyo.org.

Apr 27 to Apr 29, 2018 • Point Reyes Birding and Nature Festival • Point Reyes Station, CA, USA
This three-day event is a program of the Environmental Action Committee of West Marin (EAC) and allows attendees to experience one of the most ecologically significant areas along the Pacific Coast with experienced naturalists and biologists. Just outside the magnificent Point Reyes National Seashore, participants will enjoy the biological diversity of plants and animals of this area and the surrounding regional habitats of the rural landscapes of West Marin County. The Festival takes place at the height of spring migration with opportunities for over 184 bird species! Over 50 field events and indoor workshops focused on a variety of birds, habitat, plants, and mammals. Keynote speakers to be announced. For more information, please contact 415-663-9312 or events@eacmarin.org.

Apr 28 to Apr 29, 2018 • Spring Fling • Paradise, MI, USA
Join us for Michigan Audubon’s annual celebration of bird migration at Whitefish Point Bird Observatory. Spring Fling is held each year during the last weekend in April. Life listers, photographers, beginners, and birders of all ages will enjoy this weekend at the premier birding spot in Michigan. The event includes bird walks, informative workshops, a banquet with keynote speaker Josh Haas, pre- and post-event birding field trips, family-friendly activities, and more! For more information, please contact Lindsay Cain at 517-580-7364 or lcain@michiganaudubon.org.

Apr 30 to May 5, 2018 • New River Birding and Nature Festival • Fayetteville, WV, USA
Since 2002, the New River Birding & Nature Festival takes place annually in and around the New River Gorge National River, in the heart of the upland, hardwood forests that Cornell Lab of Ornithology has identified as a crucial stopover habitat for the continued survival of species such as Golden-winged, Blue-winged, and Swainson’s Warbler, as well as the Scarlet Tanager. This bird-watching nature festival highlights more than 100 bird species on a variety of birding tours. A friendly birding vacation for everyone, the week-long event features guided birding and nature excursions, world-class speakers, the finest collection of guides, tasty food, and a back-porch atmosphere unmatched by any other birding festival. Signature guided bird-watching experiences include the opportunity to visit a wide range of habitats, world-class instruction for those wanting to enhance their birding skills, and the best guide-to-guest ratio on the festival circuit. Keynote Speakers to be announced. For more information or to contact us, please visit our website.

Apr 30 to May 21, 2018 • Festival of Birds • Leamington, ON, Canada
Point Pelee is located at the crossroads of two major migration routes, extending into the western basin of Lake Erie. It is one of the first migration stops when birds cross Lake Erie at night. By the end of April, the first wave of songbirds arrives. 42 of the 55 regularly occurring warbler species in North America have been recorded at Point Pelee. All festival programs are included with Point Pelee National Park admission. Workshops, programs, and bird walks for beginners to experts: birding 101; sparrow, warbler, shorebird, waterbird, and raptor ID; photography; introduction to eBird; digiscoping and photography; seawatching; 100 Species Challenge. Birder breakfast and lunch. Reserve your birding hike online or call 519-326-6173, 888-707-3533. Birding hikes limited to 12 participants.

May 2 to May 4, 2018 • Southwest Wings Spring Fling & Southwest Wings Birding and Nature Festival • Sierra Vista, AZ, USA
Southwest Wings Birding and Nature Festival is entering its 27nd year in 2018. This is the premiere nature festival in Arizona, voted one of the top 5 birding and nature festivals in the country. Due to the abundance and variety of wildlife species we offer two birding events. May is our Spring Fling with field trips only. August is our larger festival, Southwest Wings, with Keynote Speaker, Wildlife exhibits and Vendors with birding paraphernalia. Both events offer field trips to all the birding hotspots in Southeast Arizona. We offer small group birding with a limit of ten people plus a guide. We are very proud of our guiding roster that we have developed in the last quarter century. Many come to see our 15 species of hummingbirds, but many other rarities show up on our event bird list. For more information, like lists of birds seen last year, please visit our website, or contact 520-266-0149 or admin@swwings.org.