If you have questions regarding field trips or would like to check the status of trips in case of unfavorable weather conditions, please call the trip leader. If he/she cannot be reached, call the scheduler. Trips geared for beginners are highlighted in red. To get directions, you can also use the Birding Sites Map. Due to insurance requirements, Sacramento Audubon leaders are not allowed to organize ridesharing/ carpools. Participants are, however, encouraged to voluntarily share rides. Any carpool arrangements are private arrangements between the driver and the passengers. Drivers must carry adequate insurance coverage. Please be courteous and share gas expenses with the driver.
These trips are not conducted by Sacramento Audubon Society, and are listed for your information.
Bufferlands Birds & Blooms Tour
Saturday, April 10th,1:30 p.m.-3:30 p.m.
The FishheadLake mitigation wetland is a nice example of wetlands created as mitigation for earlier wetland losses. The wetland has both a permanent and seasonal component as well as a surrounding upland buffer. Thousands of waterfowl winter at the wetland and many remain year-round to nest and raise young. Much of the area is planted to native wildflowers that bloom in early spring. California poppies, lupines, owl's clover, baby blue-eyes, and many others can bee seen spreading about the uplands and wetland edges. Visitors will receive a packet of native flower seeds to start their own native garden.
The meeting location is weather-dependant, so please contact Roger Jones at (916) 875-9174 or email firstname.lastname@example.org the week preceding the event for exact meeting location and directions.
Mather Vernal Pool Flower Walks
Sundays,April 11, 18 & 25 at 10:00 and 1:00 p.m.
Join the Mather vernal pool docents of the Sacramento Chapter of the California Native Plant Society for a 2-hour tour to explore this magic carpet of flowers. These unique wildflowers bloom only for a brief period in the spring. For more information and to sign up, call (916)364-2437 or go to sacsplash.org. The tour is provided free of charge by trained CNPS docents, however donations are greatly appreciated.
Local Fish Fauna
Wednesday, April 14th, 12:00 noon-2:00 p.m.
What lurks in the murky depths of Sacramento's urban creeks? Join SRCSD Bufferlands staff for an introduction to the local fish fauna. Bufferlands staff will demonstrate fish sampling techniques in a local lake, practice hands-on (for those who aren't too squeamish) fish identification, and discuss the natural history of California's diverse fish communities. In addition, we will be able to view one of the direct consumers of the local fish populations as we spy on a large heron and egret rookery. This tour includes a short, 1/2 mile walk and an opportunity to see some of the Bufferlands riparian and wetland habitat restoration projects.
The meeting location is weather-dependant, so please contact Steve Scott at (916) 875-9307 or email email@example.com the week preceding the event for exact meeting location and directions.
Steelhead Creek Beaver Pond Walk
Wednesday, April 14th, 6:30 p.m.
Early evening is the best time to see beaver activity and lots of other local wildlife. Take a stroll with Mary Tappel through Wolfe Ranch Wildlife Sanctuary. Meet at the Ueda Parkway Staging area parking lot on Elkhorn Blvd. and Sorento Rd. east of Steelhead Creek. Call 925-1933 or email firstname.lastname@example.org before April 22nd for further information or directions. No need to sign up in advance. NOTE: this event will be cancelled in the event of heavy rain.
Join Jack at Phoenix Field (Jim David Park) for a walk around the beautiful vernal pools.This trip will feature rare plants and spring blooms in the vernal pools.Jack will lend his expertise in identifying these unusual plants.Phoenix Field is located on Sunset Blvd. just east of Hazel Ave.Don’t forget your binoculars to view the resident birds.
Join Dan on his favorite spot along the Parkway in search of our late wintering, migrant and breeding birds, and get to know an area he knows well. Although he birds this spot almost daily, he has rarely seen other birders and is eager to share his knowledge of this oasis behind his home. In the last two years this area has produced a Palm and Chestnut-sided warbler and a California Thrasher. He will work the area well to locate any goodies in hopes of finding them for the group. There are well worn trails and some that require a little more work, so depending on everyone's ability, he will decide how strenuous the walk will be in the morning. The trip will last until lunch time, and is an excellent trip for beginning and more experienced birders. From Hwy 50, take the Howe Avenue exit and head north; from Howe, take the first exit before the bridge.To do this, you will need to be in the right-most lane.Cross La Riviera Drive and enter the Howe Avenue access to the AmericanRiver.Without a CountyParkPass there is a $5 fee to park in the lot, or parking is available on La Riviera Drive.
Join us as we explore several parks hidden in the suburbs of Citrus Heights and Carmichael.If we can filter out the cacophony of House Wrens and Oak Titmice, we may be able to hear a migrating warbler on his way to higher elevations.We will start with the old Stock Ranch property, and after a short walk there we will go on to a couple of other riparian parks.This trip will end by noon, and is great for beginners.Meet in the southeast corner of the Wal-Mart parking lot (drive along the east side of the store, by the gardening section) at 7010 Auburn Blvd. in Citrus Heights.
If you have never been to Hansen Ranch, you are in for a treat!Join us in a leisurely walk on the dyke above the pond that overlooks the preserve’s many unique qualities.The habitat is mainly marsh but also has open fields and a tree line in the distance, which hosts a heron and egret rookery in the spring.Turkey and coyote might be present strolling across the grasslands.The pond has many surprises hidden in the reeds; come join us and let us find them together! Meet at Main & the South end of Kelton Way at 8:00 a.m.This trip is good for beginners and will end before noon.Bring something to view birds. (Binoculars, cameras and/or spotting scopes are very helpful.) There are no restroom facilities
A combined Sacramento Audubon and California Native Plants Society trip.
As we enjoy the flora and fauna of this riparian corridor I will talk about naturalists of the 18th and 19th centuries whose names grace many of many of our western birds and flora; Nuttall’s Woodpecker, Bewick’s Wren, Townsend’s Warbler, Douglas fir, Freemont cottonwood…the list is endless. This is a Walk & Plop outing. Bring a totable three-legged stool or personal groundcloth so that we can sit occasionally and enjoy the overlook at the junction of the Feather and BearRivers. This trip is suitable for all levels of birders, botanizers and history buffs, especially those with nimble minds but well-experienced bodies.You may want to bring water and/or snacks.Meet John at the Bel Air shopping center on Arena Blvd. at 8:30am.From Sacramento, take I-5 north to Arena Blvd., go west (left) over the freeway. Take the first left, Duckhorn Rd., and then turn right into the parking area. We will meet on the north side of the parking lot between Wells Fargo and Golden 1. Or you can meet the group in the Bobelaine parking lot at about 9am.Take Hwy. 99 north toward Yuba City and about 2 miles north of the Feather River Bridge turn right on Laurel Avenue. Follow Laurel to the dead end at the Bobelaine parking lot.
We will be exploring the beautiful canyon of the Middle Fork of the AmericanRiver off Foresthill Road to look for spring migrants and resident breeding birds. This is Scott's favorite 'secret' birding spot. Possibilities include several species of flycatcher, including Gray, Hammond's and Pacific-slope; Hutton's, Cassin's and Warbling Vireos; up to 7 species of warbler; Black-headed Grosbeak; Lazuli Bunting and Bullock's Oriole. Walking will be up to a mile at a time with moderate inclines. This trip will end mid-day, but plan to lunch on the banks of the river. Meet at the Horseshoe Bar Road Park & Ride in Loomis, Exit 110 off I-80 at 7 am.
NOTE:there is now a $10 per car parking fee at Driver’s Flat.
At this favorite spring hotspot you should find wild flowers in bloom and hear the song of the Yellow-breasted Chat. Richard will scout for Lazuli Buntings, Wrentits, California Thrashers, migrating hummingbirds, and colorful warblers.Meet Richard at the Bella Bru in the shopping center on the northeast corner of El Dorado Hills Blvd. and Highway 50. This will be a half day trip and is a good one for beginners.
Meet Cathie in the first parking lot on your right, just past the entrance kiosk.We’ll walk through the oak woodland, looking for wrens, nuthatches and other birds, nesting or with young.We should also find some spring wildflowers and Pipevine Swallowtail butterflies. This is a good trip for beginners, and will end before noon.From Folsom Blvd., between Bradshaw and Mather Field Road, take Rod Beaudry Drive north into the park, (formerly called GoethePark).Without a CountyParkPass there is a $5 per car park entrance fee.
Saturday, May 1, 7am - 11am
Pine Hill Preserve Birding
Leader: Chris Conard and Graciela Hinshaw, preserve manager
The Preserve was established to protect rare native plants in El DoradoCounty that occur only on gabbro soils.It stretches from Folsom Lake in the north to Highway 50 in the south and contains more than 4,000 acres. We plan to visit newly acquired land in KanakaValley, with a combination of grasslands, open oak woodland, and areas of chaparral transition. For details and registration, contact Graciela at the e-mail address above.
Join Tim and Mark for a trip to Arbuckle and then up Sand Creek Road.Target birdsinclude Black-chinned Sparrow, Sage Sparrow, Lawrence’s Goldfinch, Western Kingbird, Roadrunner, Western Screech Owl, Pileated Woodpecker, Mountain Quail, and other migrants. The road can be rough and all wheel drive is recommended. Bring a lunch and liquids and be prepared for an afternoon return. We will meet at the Woodland Jack-in-the-Box.Take 1-5 north toward Woodland; exit at County Road 102 (#536); turn right (north) on 102 and turn right into the Jack-in-the-Box parking lot.FRS radios are helpful on this trip.
Sunday, May 2, 7am - 11am Spring Migration at the Bufferlands Leader: Chris Conard, 203-1610, email@example.com This morning tour of the Bufferlands will focus on finding migrant songbirds, resident breeders, and lingering winter residents.The heron, egret and cormorant rookery will be in full swing, and if water levels are right, we could have excellent shorebirding conditions.The Sac Reg. County Sanitation District Bufferlands contain 2,650 acres of wetlands, riparian forest, grasslands, vernal pools, and restored habitats.From Sacramento, take I-5 south. Exit at Meadowview/Pocket Rd (just south of Florin Rd) and turn left (east) over the freeway. Turn right (south) on Freeport Blvd (the third light).After one mile, just before the town of Freeport, turn left on Stonecrest and follow it over the freeway and south to a locked gate.Be prepared for potentially muddy trails and up to 3 miles of walking.
This scenic recreational area of rolling hillsides, streams, reservoirs and ponds offers a variety of wildlife. This trip will include several short hikes over uneven terrain. Possible birds include Yellow-breasted Chat, Lewis’s Woodpecker, rails, warblers, and more. Bring lunch, plenty of water, and dress for changeable weather. Meet Richard at the Brookfield’s Restaurant parking lot, 1817 Taylor Road, in Roseville. From Sacramento on I-80, take the Eureka Road offramp (Exit 105A) and continue straight through the signal light at Eureka Road and you’ll be on Taylor Road.Turn left just past the Shell Station.Brookfield’s is behind Shell.
Join Maureen for a walk in beautiful grasslands and oak woodlands off Hwy. 49 near Coloma.The Cronan Ranch is home to a large variety of foothill birds including raptor species such as White-tailed Kite, Red-tailed and Red-shouldered Hawk, and Northern Harrier.Other species may include area specialties such as Rufous-crowned Sparrows, Lazuli Buntings (which nest on the Ranch) and resident and migrating passerines. Grasshopper Sparrows were found last year. This hike is 3.7 miles long; trails are uneven and can be muddy. There are portable toilets in the Ranch parking lot and at several locations along the way.Meet in El Dorado Hills just off Hwy. 50 in the coffee shop inside the Raley’s Supermarket.From Hwy 50 east take Exit #30B; turn right on El Dorado Hills Blvd. and go north under the freeway to the shopping center on your right.
Where Bewick’s Wrens and Song Sparrows share habitat it is easy to get their songs confused.The Bewick’s employs many short buzzes and quick notes joining longer and louder trills, plus, he has many different songs.The Song Sparrow has less variety but can vary the order of his phrases which adds to the confusion.We will key into the repertories of these two great songsters.Bring a pencil and notebook to create your own mnemonics.The park is located at the east end of Arden Way, south of Fair Oaks Blvd. in Carmichael.We will meet at the gazebo at the very end of the park road.A CountyParkPass or a $5 parking fee is required.This trip will end before noon.
Wednesday, May 12, 9am till noon
Sailor Bar Area
Leader:Jack Hiehle, 967-0777
Meet Jack at the end of Emperor Street to explore the plants, birds and animals of this riparian corridor along the American River Parkway.From Winding Way, turn south on Kenneth, then east on Emperor Street to the end.
Saturday, May 15, 7am
Bothe-Napa Valley State Park Leader: Dan Williams, (714) 943-1266, firstname.lastname@example.org Join Dan for a full day of birding the Coast Range above beautiful Napa Valley Wine Country. Bring a lunch and be prepared for a moderate hike, as we explore this park's fern-lined trails that wind through tanoak, madrone, and redwood forests. Birds we will seek out there include spring arrivals such as Allen's Hummingbird, Olive-sided Flycatcher, Swainson's Thrush, and Hermit Warbler. We also hope to see park residents like Pileated Woodpecker, Chestnut-backed Chickadee, Winter Wren, and maybe even a snoozing Spotted Owl (definitely not a guarantee)! Please meet at the I-80 Park and Ride on West Capitol Ave. by 7am. We will bird until early afternoon, so those of you who wish to can stay and do a little tasting!
Join Mark for a morning walk along the American River Parkway.We will see a nice variety of resident birds and hopefully some migrating songbirds.From the intersection of Sunrise and Fair Oaks Blvd., go west on Fair Oaks, then make an immediate left turn onto Pennsylvania Avenue and follow it into the park.Without a CountyParkPass there is a $5 parking fee.This is an excellent trip for beginners.