Sleep-in Special: Paton Center for Hummingbirds with David Tonnessen

Difficulty: Easy (Some wheelchair accessibility. Will include short walks on mostly flat walking trails)
The famous Paton Center for Hummingbirds is known for its backyard birds and scenic location. Wally and Marion Paton first began inviting birders into their yard shortly after moving to Patagonia in 1973, and after their passing, the center was acquired by the Tucson Audubon Society with generous help from the American Bird Conservancy and Victor Emanuel Nature Tours. It is a place to explore and experience the special birds of southeast Arizona and it is dedicated to the celebration and conservation of hummingbirds—and all of southeast Arizona’s astounding biodiversity. Violet-crowned Hummingbirds are common and the many feeders attract a wide array of bird species. Drive time to meeting location from festival venue is about 70 minutes, specific meeting instructions will be emailed beforehand.  Limited to 8 participants.

Violet-crowned Hummingbird, Lois Manowitz

Kentucky Camp Common Nighthawks with David Tonnessen

Difficulty: Moderate (Some walking on mild slopes, and possibly rocky/uneven surfaces. Drive time to location approximately just over one hour on some dirt road)

Our main goal will be to look and listen for Common Nighthawks which give a recognizable “peent” call and are very local in the Southeast Arizona region. Kentucky Camp and the surrounding areas around Las Cienegas grasslands have proven to be a reliable location for this goatsucker. We’ll drive up the dirt road leading to Kentucky Camp checking the area before dusk for species like American Kestrel, Say’s Phoebe, Botteri’s Sparrow, and Blue Grosbeak. On the way back down after dusk we’ll also listen for Common Poorwill and Great Horned Owls. Limited to 8 participants.

Common Nighthawk by Greg Lavaty

Mt. Lemmon Area with David Tonnessen 

Difficulty: Moderate (possibly some steeper slopes or more rocky/rooted trails)

We’ll start at the Gordon Hirabayashi Campground to search for birds of oak woodland such as Woodhouse’s Scrub Jay, Bushtit, and Scott’s Oriole before heading up to higher elevations and new habitats. A stop in Bear Canyon puts us in a beautiful canyon where we’ll search for Mexican Jay, Plumbeous Vireo, and Grace’s Warbler among others in the sycamores and pines. Depending on timing and activity we may visit other locations as well. Drive time to initial meeting location from festival venue is about 40 minutes, specific meeting instructions will be emailed beforehand.  Limited to 8 participants

Grace’s Warbler by Jim Burns

Birding & Photography with Hunt’s Photo at Madera Canyon with Simon Tolzmann and Christopher Smith

Arizona Woodpecker by Mick Thompson

Difficulty: Moderate to Difficult (1-2 miles of bumpy/rocky trail depending on activity of birds and the desire of group)

Enjoy a mix of birding and photography with leaders representing your favorite photography retailer, Hunt’s Photo. Some of the special species found here include Arizona Woodpecker, Broad-billed, Anna’s, Rivoli’s, and more species of hummingbird are possible, Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher, and Elegant Trogon just to name a few. $8 Coronado National Forest parking pass not included. Specific meeting instructions will be emailed beforehand. Limited to 10 participants.

Arizona Woodpecker by Mick Thompson

Birding & Photography with Hunt’s Photo at Rose Canyon Lake with Simon Tolzmann and Christopher Smith

Olive Warbler by Shawn Cooper

Difficulty: Easy – Moderate (Little more than a mile walking on a dirt path, along with some incline on paved road)

Enjoy a mix of birding and photography with leaders representing your favorite photography retailer, Hunt’s Photo. Notable birds found at this location include Painted Redstart, Greater Peewee, Red-faced Warbler, Olive Warbler, and if we’re lucky, maybe a Common Black Hawk. $10 vehicle entry fee not included. Specific meeting instructions will be emailed beforehand. Limited to 10 participants.

Olive Warbler by Shawn Cooper

Festival Celebration in the Nature Expo

This is the last two hours of the festival Nature Expo! Prepare for your next birding adventure by talking with your favorite birding guides from around the world. You’ll have a chance to win some special door prizes and receive our final update on festival bird sightings before your last day of field trips. A cash bar will be on-site along with free appetizers.

Raptors with Arizona Game & Fish and Nancy Kreuder

There are few birds that capture our attention more than hawks and owls. Come see a variety of raptors found here in Southeast Arizona at the festival’s Nature Expo thanks to our friends, Arizona Game & Fish.

Reid Park Zoo with Live Animals

Our favorite zoo will be in the Nature Expo area with live animals! Bring the family by to check out a mix of wildlife up close thanks to the Reid Park Zoo.

Nature Expo is Open with Festival Friends & Partners

Explore the festival’s Nature Expo after a morning (or day!) of birding. Check the “Big Boards” (birds and wildlife checklists) to see if you can mark off any new birds, snakes, or butterflies seen that day on your field trip and engage with our exhibitors and volunteers who are happy to share their expertise and hospitality with you.

Festival Celebration in the Nature Expo

Drop by the Nature Expo for a chance to win some special door prizes and get an update on festival bird sightings. A cash bar will be on-site along with free appetizers.