Late August is the time for festivals in Arizona, Minnesota, Oregon, Alaska, and England — and for a vitally important conference in Utah.
Tucson Bird & Wildlife Festival
Enjoy guided field trips to Madera Canyon, California Gulch, Mt. Lemmon, and other Sonoran Desert and Sky Islands hotspots. Christopher Cokinos, author of Hope Is the Thing with Feathers: A Personal Chronicle of Vanished Birds and other books, and J. Drew Lanham, professor of wildlife biology at Clemson University, will give keynote presentations.
Rutland Waters Nature Preserve, Egleton, Rutland, England
Birdfair, the British Birdwatching Fair, is celebrating its 25th anniversary. That’s reason enough to mark the calendar, we think, but here’s another: This year’s festival will focus on the Americas. The organisers are raising funds to support conservation efforts to protect birds that breed in grasslands here in North America and spend the winter in the pampas of South America.
Henderson Hummingbird Hurrah
See hummingbird-banding demonstrations and hear presentations on gardening for hummingbirds and attracting birds to your yard with native plants. A workshop about monarch butterflies will be presented for young birdwatchers.
27th Annual Oregon Shorebird Festival
Based at the Oregon Institute of Marine Biology in Charleston, this intimate festival offers guided trips to Bandon Marsh NWR, New River, and the Coos Bay area. Plus, there’s a pelagic trip on Saturday.
Tanana Valley Sandhill Crane Festival
Enjoy bird banding, nature walks, and a crane-calling contest, and hear a presentation by photographer Michael Forsberg, author of the lovely book On Ancient Wings: The Sandhill Cranes of North America.
5th International Partners in Flight Conference and Conservation Workshop
This may be the most important meeting of the whole year, since it will bring together members of the bird-conservation community from all over the hemisphere to create a unified vision for birds’ full life-cycle needs and how to address them.
August 30-September 2
Tucson Audubon field trip to Q Ranch, Arizona
Carpool from Tucson and Phoenix, Arizona
Expect great birds and lots of other natural beauty, including post-monsoon wildflowers and dragonflies and dark, clear night skies filled with stars. This trip combines birding with brief hikes to nearby scenic and historic locations. You’ll tour the 1,000-year-old Q Ranch Mogollon-Culture Pueblo ruins. Limited to 12 participants.
We highlight fun birding events in “Birding Briefs” in every issue of BirdWatching magazine. Most of the events above appeared in our August 2013 issue.