August 10-13, 2017
The Southeast Arizona Birding Festival is a great opportunity to enjoy birds of the Sonoran Desert, grasslands, mountains and canyons of southeastern Arizona.
Southeast Arizona Birding Festival – Second Spring
This birding festival provides a dazzling array of watchable wildlife during short day trips in the Tucson, Arizona area.
The success of the annual festival is due to the seasonal monsoon rains in July and August. Many bird species wait for July and August to initiate courtship and nesting behaviors, which makes them much easier to observe.
The hummingbird numbers and species diversity also peak in August when as many as 15 species of hummingbirds can be observed. Warblers, buntings and other perching birds are migrating from the north through the region. The perfect storm of birds is completed by the arrival from south of a variety of Mexican rarities.
Festival bird list
The possible bird species visible during the festival include Montezuma Quail, Gray Hawk, Ruddy Ground Dove, Whiskered Screech-Owl, Mexican Whip-poor-will, Broad-billed Hummingbird, White-eared Hummingbird, Berylline Hummingbird, Violet-crowned Hummingbird, Blue-throated Hummingbird, Magnificent Hummingbird, Lucifer Hummingbird, Elegant Trogon Gila ,Woodpecker, Arizona Woodpecker, Gilded Flicker, Northern Beardless-Tyrannulet, Greater Pewee, Buff-breasted Flycatcher, Dusky-capped Flycatcher, Sulphur-bellied Flycatcher, Thick-billed Kingbird, Tropical Kingbird, Mexican Ja,y Bridled Titmouse, Mexican Chickadee, Black-capped Gnatcatcher, Bendire’s Thrasher, Crissal Thrasher, Lucy’s Warbler, Grace’s Warbler, Painted Redstart, Red-faced Warbler, Olive Warbler, Abert’s Towhee, Botteri’s Sparrow, Rufous-winged Sparrow, Five-striped Sparrow, Yellow-eyed Junco and many more.
Tucson Bird and Wildlife Festival Field Trips
There are so many field trips that picking one is a joyful anguish of anticipation.
Mt. Lemmon is the highest peak in the Santa Catalina with a wide range of vegetation on the drive from the saguaro-palo verde scrubland to mixed conifer forest at the summit.
Huachuca Mountains have some of the best birding in Arizona, expecially for hummingbirds, flycatchers, owls and the Elegant Trogon.
Santa Ritas and Madera Canyon are the most famous birding areas in Arizona for good reason. The area is accessed from desert grasslands and ends above live oak to the pind-oak woodlands and montane conifer forest at the 9,453-foot Mt. Wrightson.
Saguaro National Park is home to the Elf Owl, Gila Woodpecker, Gilded Flicker, Ash-throated and Brown-created Flycatchers, and Purple Martin.
Birding Festival Organizer
The Tucson Audubon Society, a powerhouse conservation organization, is focused on connecting people of the Southwest to the natural world through birds.
Tucson Audubon Society
Founded in 1949, Tucson Audubon has become the leading non-profit conservation organization in Arizona by a simple, but enormously challenging approach: involve participation in conservation projects through recreational birding, educational activities, conservation projects like planting trees and counting birds, and working effectively with local, state and national policy makers. The Tucson Audubon Society is a founding member of the Coalition for Sonoran Desert Protection.
The Tucson Audubon Society has a talented group of paid and volunteer leaders, all professionals. Executive Director since 2007, Paul Green grew up exploring the woods, hedgerows and streams around Fen Ditton, England, and after his Ph.D project describing the social organization of birds, he worked on conservation projects around the world.
Hummingbirds, Saguaros and natural history
The Tucson Audubon Society’s Paton Center for Hummingbirds is home or a migratory stopover for more than 200 bird species, including Violet-crowned Hummingbirds , Gray Hawks, Varied Buntings, Green-tailed Towhees, Thick-billed Kingbirds, and many more local specialties.
Tucson and Southeast Arizona may be most famous for their giant Saguaros, the nation’s largest cacti. Saguaro National Park is a symbol of the American Southwest. Tucson Audubon leads field trips to the national park, Patagonia, and a variety of other areas with a rich diversity of habitats and birds and other wildlife that inhabit them.
Tucson Audubon teams with the Riverpark Inn in Tucson to host the annual birding festival, an exciting weekend of outstanding birding and wildlife-watching.