Visiting Southeast Arizona
Your first birding visit
Be sure to check out the guidebooks in our Online Nature Shop— a great way to gear up for birding in Arizona! And definitely pick up a copy of Finding Birds in Southeastern Arizona (2015, Revised 8th Edition), the ultimate birding guide to southeast Arizona.
If you are coming to southeast Arizona for the first time, it is helpful to become acquainted with the common birds and habitats. You could begin in the Tucson area palo verde/saguaro desertscrub where the typical species include Gambel’s Quail, Greater Roadrunner, Gila Woodpecker, Gilded Flicker, Verdin, Cactus Wren, Curve-billed Thrasher, Pyrrhuloxia, Canyon Towhee and in summer, White-winged Dove and Black-chinned Hummingbird, or in winter White-crowned Sparrow and Anna’s Hummingbird. Agua Caliente Park, Catalina State Park, Tucson Mountain Park, the two units of Saguaro National Park and Sabino Canyon are good examples of desertscrub near Tucson. To see water birds and shorebirds, the ponds at Sweetwater Wetlands and Arthur Pack Park are good from fall through spring.
Local Birding Guides for Hire
If you are looking to hire a local birding guide, you have come to the right place! As a service to the birding community, Tucson Audubon refers local guides who we know to be knowledgeable and reputable. These local guides and guide companies support Tucson Audubon as partners in our efforts to serve the community through environmental conservation, education, and recreational programs.
Guides who are members of the Tucson Audubon Birds Benefit Business Alliance are indicated with a logo below. If you’re looking for accommodations or other services, please visit our Birds Benefit Business Alliance Members list.
|Adventure Birding Company||adventurebirding.com
|Specializing in flexible, personalized guiding in SE Arizona|
|Gavin Bieber, WINGS||Kingbird77@hotmail.com||SE AZ and beyond|
|Ken Blankenship, East West Birding Tours
|Bird Guiding and Tours in SE Arizona, LRGV Texas, and the Southeast.|
|Richard Fray, Fun Birding Toursemail@example.com
|Professional guide based in Rio Rico, covering all SE AZ|
|Laurens Halsey, Desert Harrier Birding and Nature Guide Servicesfirstname.lastname@example.org
|Personal and Custom Birdwatching Guide Services throughout Southeast Arizona|
|Rich Hoyer, Senior leader for WINGSemail@example.com||Top-notch ear-birder with much Neotropical experience, all-around naturalist|
|Melody Kehl, Melody’s Birding||www.melodysbirding.com
|Individualized tours designed to meet your specific needs and wish list, covering all Southeast Arizona|
|Jake Mohlmann, WINGS and Adventure Birding Companyfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Vincent Pinto, Ravens Way Wild Journeys||ravensnatureschool.org
|Birder, Naturalist, Ethnobotanist, Wildlife Biologist, and Wilderness Survival Instructor. Personalized birding experiences.|
|John Yerger, Adventure Birding Companyemail@example.com||Based in Portal, AZ. Tours throughout southwestern Arizona|
|WINGS Birding Toursfirstname.lastname@example.org
|Small group and private tours for birders of all levels.|
These referrals are not vetted by Tucson Audubon with regard to permitting or insurance. Tucson Audubon takes no responsibility for the guided trip that is chosen. When hiring a local birding guide, check that they have the required materials in place to operate on public lands managed by the National Forest Service, Bureau of Land Management, or other agencies (permits, liability insurance, etc.). You may also want to ask the guide to provide you with references. Some guides may use recorded bird calls; please check with your guide in advance if this is a concern to you.
Important resources to help you plan a trip to southeast Arizona:
- Check out our online Tucson Birding Trail Map at tucsonaudubon.org/tucsonbirdtrail. Find info on 45 birding locations in and around Tucson, separated by habitat type! Pick up a FREE printed copy at our Nature Shops.
- Look for an upcoming free Tucson Audubon field trip
- Check the Southeast Arizona Rare Bird Alert
- Accessible Tucson birding locations
- Explore Tucson area birding month by month
- Learn tips for safe desert birding
Tucson Audubon's Paton Center for HummingbirdsThe Paton Center for Hummingbirds is a place to explore and experience the special birds of southeast Arizona. It is dedicated to the celebration and conservation of hummingbirds—and all of southeast Arizona's astounding biodiversity—through recreation, education, and sustainable living. Learn more
Finding Birds in Southeast Arizona, Revised 8th Edition, 2015
Tucson Audubon’s updated edition brings together all the latest information on finding birds in southeast Arizona. This is your best source of detailed information that will help in planning bird watching adventures throughout southeast Arizona. New for the Revised Eighth Edition:
- New birding sites across Southeast Arizona
- New maps and updated older maps
- Updated contact information and web addresses
- Updated information on existing site locations
- Updated information on entering Mexico
- Updated IBA (Important Bird Areas) information, including sites
- Updated bar graphs and species accounts for all species
Sweetwater Wetlands is a gem of urban bird and wildlife activity right in urban Tucson. So far 306 bird species have been documented here. Join our weekly bird walks on Wednesdays and see what you can find!Learn more