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Monday, April 3, 2017

Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival and others

I've already raved about it last November, but the Link again.

This probably vies with

as the best birding Festival in the U.S.

Upcoming birding festivals

Apr 19, 2017 to Apr 26, 2017 
Lek Treks & More: The Lesser Prairie-Chicken Festival
Woodward, Oklahoma
Join us in northwest Oklahoma to view Lesser Prairie-Chickens from blinds or vans. Our keynote speaker is Sheri Williamson. 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 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. Contact: John Kennington, 918-809-6325,

May 1, 2017 to May 22, 2017 
Festival of Birds
Point Pelee National Park, Leamington, Ontario
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. Forty-two (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; seawtaching; 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 5, 2017 to May 14, 2017 
The Biggest Week in American Birding
Maumee Bay Lodge and Conference Center, 1750 State Park Road #2, Oregon, Ohio 43616
The “Biggest Week” is a 10-day birding festival organized and hosted by Black Swamp Bird Observatory and features some of the best birding in North America. In mid-May, you won’t want to be anywhere else but Northwest Ohio. With a myriad of workshops, guided birding activities, half-day birding bus tours, keynote speakers, and more, The “Biggest Week” has something to offer beginner and seasoned birders alike. Learn photography skills and bird identification tips from leading experts, take a sketching class with a local artist, or join one of our daily walks at the world famous Magee Marsh boardwalk. If it is bird related, you can find it at The Biggest Week In American Birding! 2017 Keynote speakers include Lili Taylor, Jeff Gordon & Lisa White, Auriel Fornier, Pete Dunne & Kevin Karlson, Louise Zemaitis, Noah Strycker, Dr. Peter Marra, and Ken Kaufman. Contact: 419-898-4070,

May 18, 2017 to May 21, 2017 
Cape May Spring Festival
Cape May, New Jersey
The 2017 Cape May Spring Fest has a new twist; an emphasis on wildlife habitat. Sure, we're at the center of the Atlantic Flyway, but another reason we have such an amazing variety of birds is our variety of habitats, some of which are greatly enhanced by human intervention to preserve native habitats, and remove invasive plants and replace them with native plants. And we've got the experts on the subject for this Spring Festival. Our Saturday Luncheon Speaker is Dr. Doug Tallamy, author of BRINGING NATURE HOME, and his presentation is entitled, "A Chickadee’s Guide to Gardening." On Friday night, we will feature home-town favorites, Pat and Clay Sutton on "How to Spot an Owl." With walks, boat trips, trolley trips, and indoor programs, we have a terrific lineup for birders of all levels. Contact Deb Shaw at 609-400-3836 or visit Cape May Fall Festival, October 19-22, 2017. This three-day festival showcases Cape May Bird Observatory’s migration monitoring work: the Cape May Hawkwatch, Avalon Seawatch, Monarch Monitoring Project and Morning Flight Songbird Count. There are many exclusive walks, indoor programs, trolley trips, and boat trips, and most likely a Pelagic Trip, too. The weekend will feature keynotes by Pete Dunne and Kevin Karlson on their new Raptor book, as well as a program by CMBO’s partner organizations abroad, SPURN in the UK, and Falsterbo in Sweden. In addition, we take over the Cape May Convention Hall with some terrific wildlife-related vendors and the amazing shows of Jonathan Wood’s The Raptor Project. Contact Deb Shaw at 609-400-3836 or visit

Point Pelee, Magee Marsh and Cape May are legendary birding hotspots. Should be every birder's dream to bird there.

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