are welcome on our birding field trips!Bring your own binoculars.Some
trips require preregistration – see details.Others need no advance notice, but keep weather in mind.Contact field trip leaders (addresses below)
for more information if needed.
Dr. Woodrey has been researching grassland birds for many years
and has secrets to share!Learn about
this elusive and tricky-to-identify but fascinating group of birds in this free
Place and time: Meet at the MS
Sandhill Crane NWR Visitor Center in Gautier, MS (MAP)
at 8:00am. We will catch and release a few sparrows on the grounds and will
discuss the intricacies of sparrow identification at the same time. We
will be at the refuge until around 9:30 -10:00.
We will then caravan about five miles to The Nature Conservancy Old Fort Bayou
Mitigation Bank which has an excellent diversity of sparrows where we can
really work on our sparrow identification skills until around noon. Dress
appropriately for the weather. Boots that can get wet and muddy are a
must. Sunscreen, bug spray, water/drinks, snacks, and binoculars are also
Conditions: Walking on uneven ground through
grassland, driving between sites. Bathroom facilities at Crane Refuge but not
Old Fort Bayou.
If last-minute weather questions, call or text Mark Woodrey at 228 697-0460.
Fri. 2/9: Red-cockaded Woodpecker Workshop,
NOTICE: SPECIAL FRIDAY PROGRAM!
Ed Moody, DeSoto Forest Wildlife Biologist.
SPECIAL PROGRAM!Biologist Ed Moody has
overseen the hugely successful Red-cockaded Woodpecker recovery program for
many years.At RCW colonies, he’ll
explain the birds’ unique habits and show how habitat enhancements like
artificial nest inserts recreate nesting conditions for these Piney Forest
specialists. Opportunity for general birding after the talk. Place and time: Meet at the Community Center, intersection of Larue and
Old Biloxi Rd (MAP),
6:15am (these are early birds!). Conditions: Drive to one or two sites on gravel road. Bug spray a good
idea. Weather questions day of trip?
Call/text Janet Wright 228 238-4099.
Sat. 2/10: Triple Barrel (Pascagoula R. Marsh),
Leader: Bryan White, BWhite@audubon.org(913)
Audubon biological science technician Bryan White for an exclusive look at an
Audubon Coastal Bird Survey site normally closed to the public. Triple
Barrel (the site known to our old-time birders as Pascagoula River Marsh) is
good for both Passerines and Waterbirds having uplands, freshwater marsh, and
brackish water marsh. Knee boots or other footwear you can get wet and/or muddy
are recommended. Place and time: 7:30am till about 11. Meet at the
gravel lot on the northeast corner of Jerry St. Pe Hwy and USS Vicksburg Way
(Singing River Causeway) MAP. Conditions: Short
but steep path to top of berm, then easy walk on a 1.7 mile level earthen berm. Note:This site is not open to the public except for this
field trip. You MUST REGISTER for
this trip beforehand, by filling out a Hold Harmless form for Jackson County
Port Authority. Email Bryan (BWhite@audubon.org) to
Mon. 2/19 Presidents’ Day Gull Run, Hancock Co.
NOTICE:THIS IS A MONDAY TRIP, NOT
Join Hattiesburg’s Pine Woods Audubon chapter for an exciting
"Birding Along the Coast" trip. The group will start in Hancock
County and move east until whenever. Place
Meet at 7:45am at the Silver Slipper parking lot (SE corner next to beach, MAP) in Bay St Louis. Please note
Josh's contact information above so you can find the group if they have moved
on ahead. They would also like to know of any rare or uncommon birds
anywhere along the Mississippi Coast to target. Conditions: Driving with stops.
Fri. 2/23 and Sat. 2/24, MS Sandhill Crane Nat
Bird safari-style with the Crane
Refuge’s own guides!In addition to
Mississippi Sandhill Cranes, we will be looking for grassland and other birds
of the wet pine savanna, on Refuge lands not
usually accessible to the public.MCAS has TWO reserved time slots, Friday and Saturday morning.Please choose Friday if you can, to leave the
Saturday slot for worker bees.ONLY 8 BIRDERS EACH DAY, so you must SIGN UP AHEAD – call or email Janet
Wright (email@example.com, 228 238-4099).
Place and time:Meet at the
Crane Refuge Visitor Center at 7200 Crane Lane, Gautier, MS (MAP) at 8:00am the morning of the tour (Friday Feb 23
or Sat Feb 24); come a few minutes early to use the restroom facilities, as the
tour is 2 hours. Bring binoculars and field guides; there is room for one or
Conditions:Driving in Refuge van, but there may be
opportunities to get out, so wear comfortable shoes that can get a little wet
or muddy; wear layers for variable weather.
Sat. 3/3, Pascagoula Medley, Jackson Co.
Leaders:Brian Johnston, firstname.lastname@example.org, (228)
806-1712; Lucy Jacobson The Pascagoula area has some hidden
gems for birding. We’ll start at the Pascagoula River Audubon Center
(PRAC) with forest and marsh habitats, then visit 2-3 other spots according to
and time : Meet at Pascagoula River Audubon
Center parking lot in Moss Point (5107 Arthur St, MAP), 8:00am. Conditions: Alternating short walks with short drives.NOTICE:
Please bring a $5 cash donation for the PRAC portion unless you are a PRAC
member – or join PRAC before coming!
Sat. 3/10, Hancock County Beaches
Leader: Barbara Bowen email@example.com (602)
319-0538. Shorebirds and more!Including but not limited to Washington St.
Pier, the new Marina, the Yacht Club and/or beaches west of Washington St. Pier
– possibly forested areas north of the Yacht Club if conditions are right.
Place and time: Meet at Washington
St. Pier in Bay St Louis (MAP), 7:30 AM. Conditions: Short beach walks with driving from site to site.
Sat. 3/17, Fontainebleau Trail Birds & Botany,
Leaders:Janet Wright firstname.lastname@example.org (228) 238-4099,
and Charley Delmas.
We’ll look for year-round residents and early migrants in pine savanna and
bayhead habitat, while identifying wildflowers and leafing trees in full spring
glory. The Fontainebleau Trail is part of the Mississippi Sandhill Crane National
Wildlife Refuge. With no burning for several years the savanna started to fill
in, but recent management has opened up more bird habitat. Let’s see how well
it’s working! Place and time:Meet at trailhead
on Hanshaw Rd. Ocean Springs, N. of OS Middle School (MAP),
8:00am. Conditions: Easy 1-mile walking trail. Boots strongly recommended after
rain as parts of the trail can have standing water.
Sat. 3/24, Hiller Park & Biloxi Back Bay area,
Leader: Dave Reed email@example.com(985)
We will be looking for early season migrants as well as some possible rarities
at several Biloxi area parks. Starting at Hiller Park on Biloxi Back Bay,
we will then check Popps Ferry Causeway Park and James Hill Boardwalk.
Good way to learn some new birding spots if you don't know these. Place and Time: Meet at the Hiller Park
Tennis Courts (MAP) at 7:30 AM. Conditions: Easy walking, drive between spots.
Sat. 3/31, Spence’s Woods, Hancock Co.
Jason Pyron firstname.lastname@example.org
Spence’s Woods’ basic habitat
is bottomland hardwood forest near the Pearl River,
bordered by mixed hardwood and cypress swamps. In breeding season watch for Hairy
Woodpecker, Eastern Wood-pewee, Brown-headed Nuthatch, Yellow-breasted Chat and Blue
Grosbeak. Acadian Flycatcher, Prothonotary Warbler and Hooded Warbler are common
in the wooded swampy areas; watch for Swainson’s
Warbler near stands of cane and Yellow-throated Warbler in the
mature Bald Cypress. The boat landing is a good scanning spot for Anhinga and
Swallow-tailed and Mississippi Kites.
Place and time: Meet at Mississippi Welcome Center (south of Exit 2 on I-10),
A variety of habitats rich in spring migrants. Logtown is on the
Mississippi Coast Birding Trail: more info at http://mscoastbirdingtrail.audubon.org/logtown.html. Place and Time: Meet at the Stennis Exit (I-10 Exit 2) Welcome Center in
Bay St Louis between 7:15 and 7:30 AM (MAP). Conditions: Easy walking trail, up to 3 miles.
Tue. 4/10 Dauphin
Island, Mobile Co., Alabama NOTICE:THIS
IS A TUESDAY TRIP, NOT SATURDAY!
Place and time: Meet
at Ansley preserve parking lot (MAP), between 7:15 and 7:30am.
(Driving directions: From Hwy 90 in Waveland, south on Lower Bay Road 71/2
miles to Heron Bay Road (34th St). Left onto Heron Bay Road ca. 2
1/2 miles to Preserve).
Conditions: Alternating short walks with short drives. Biting
bugs may be present. Most walking areas should be dry.
Join Ship Island Excursions for a trip to the
barrier islands! Several species of Plovers good possibilities; Red Knot and/or
one of the rarer gulls not unreasonable. Depending on weather could be a
variety of migrants, and always a chance of a rare surprise.
Place and time:
Meet at Gulfport Harbor around 8:30am Ship Island Excursions dock (MAP) to board the boat which departs at 9am.Ship Island Excursions, Gulfport, MS. Ticket prices: Adult $32, Senior/Active
military $29. http://www.msshipisland.com for more information.
Conditions: Birding near fort and beach, then walking up
to~5 miles on beach, but participants
can opt out or shortcut at any point. Bring plenty of water and sunscreen. There are restrooms on the ferry. On the
island, there are restrooms at the Fort on the north side of the island and
snack bar on the south side of the island. If there is a threat of
bad weather, you can call Ship Island Excursions at 228-864-1014 for the status
of the trip that day.
NOTE: Alternate day Sunday, Apr. 22, 2018 if
cancelled due to weather.
Sat. 4/28, Boneyard Lake Rookery (Kayak trip),
haunting beauty hosts a spectacular heronry of Little Blue, Green and
Tri-colored Heron, Great, Snowy and Cattle Egret and White Ibis in spring.
Other birds that can be expected: Purple and Common Gallinules, nesting
warblers, vireos, variety of marsh-oriented birds. By kayaking in, we can get the
best views of the nesting rookery.A
and time:Meet at the Chevron Station in Wade at the
corner of Hwy 63 and 614 (MAP)
at 5:45am (early hour to give time to launch and see the rookery at its best).
instructions: Bring your own kayak
or small boat, life vest, bug repellent, water, snacks, etc.You must also have a Wildlife Management Area
User permit.Season and day permits are
sold at WalMart (see WMA
User Permit here, or ask about a day permit or a Senior Exempt
License) or online at https://www.ms.gov/mdwfp/hunting_fishing/
[the website is confusing, but fill out the application and you’ll get a
be hunting the iconic Red-cockaded Woodpecker (RCW), along with other nesting
birds of what used to be the South’s most widespread habitat, the pine savanna:
Pine and Prairie Warbler, Common Yellowthroat, Indigo Bunting, Blue Grosbeak,
Brown-headed Nuthatch, flycatchers and the elusive Bachman’s Sparrow.Great chance to learn bird songs!
and time: Meet at the park and ride at I-10 exit 50, Ocean Springs next to
Denny's, 6:45am (if you are coming from the north, contact Gerry about going
directly to the RCW site).
Driving on paved road, with stops and brief walks into habitat.
Mississippi beaches are primary nesting sites
for Least Terns, Black Skimmers, and other coastal birds.We will observe and identify nesting
behaviors, nests and eggs of terns and skimmers, and learn what stewards will
be doing through the spring and summer to guard nests and chicks at colony
Place and time: Meet at the
parking lot at Courthouse Rd and Beach Boulevard in Gulfport(MAP)
at 7:00am.We will drive from there to several
Conditions:Driving, with short walks on beach.Wear sunscreen and bring water.Good opportunity for spotting scopes.
you in the field!
Mississippi Coast Audubon Society:
We are a chapter
of the National Audubon Society, with
membership territory in the six coastal
counties of Mississippi (Hancock, Harrison,
Jackson, George, Stone, and Pearl
River). You can JOIN
National Audubon with a $20
or greater donation, and become a member of
MCAS for free (what a deal!) by clicking
HERE (the membership form specifies
chapter M53 - that's us).