Audubon Florida News

Field Trips at the 2011 Audubon Assembly

posted on September 9, 2011 in Assembly,Birding,Calendar,Chapters

Field trips at the Audubon Assembly are always one of the most-anticipated events. These outings are a wonderful opportunity for nature-lovers to do what they do best – get outdoors in some of Florida’s Special Places! Going on a birdwalk with staff and local chapter leaders is a great way to learn about native wildlife and ecology – not to mention a fun way to spend some time with friends! Early-bird tickets to Assembly are still available, but not for long! Registration for the following field trips can be done at the registration table in the hotel at Assembly. We hope to see you in Lake Mary for Florida’s signature conservation event!

Birdwalks – Oct. 14th 

(Leaving the hotel lobby at 7:45-ish and returning by 11:30 to give you some time before lunch)

Seminole Audubon will host a trip to Seminole State Forest. There are birds (Florida Scrub-jays, Red-headed Woodpeckers, Bluebirds, etc…) and beautiful springs on the property. The distinctive character of Seminole State Forest is it’s ecological diversity which includes almost all of the naturally occurring vegetative communities found in Central Florida. There are more than 13 different natural communities, each with unique plants, animals and physical characteristics. A few examples are flatwoods, scrub, blackwater streams and bottomland forests. The forest contains approximately 1,725 acres of sand pine scrub, a rapidly disappearing biological community found predominately in Florida.

West Volusia Audubon will host a trip to Blue Springs State Park. The Park covers more than 2,600 acres, including the largest spring on the St. Johns River. Blue Spring is a designated manatee refuge and the winter home to a growing population of West Indian Manatees. You will take a board walk along the spring run and also see the river area where the spring run enters the St. Johns. Featured will be water birds, warblers and migrating birds & possibly some Florida Scrub-jays!

Jacqui Sulek of Fort White, Audubon of Florida Chapter Conservation Manager, looks for birds at Devils Millhopper Geological State Park, Gainesvilile. Florida. Photo by Lucy Beebe Tobias

Orange Audubon will host a trip to Rock Springs Run State Reserve. Sand Pine scrub, pine flatwoods, swamps and mile of pristine shoreline along Rock Springs Run and the Wekiva River make this reserve a refuge of natural beauty. The Florida black bear, Florida Scrub-jay, Sandhill Crane, indigo snake, gopher tortoise and a variety of more common species often are seen. This will be a driving trip with stops.

Late-comers Option: Friday at 9:30am –  Seminole Audubon is also providing a short option for a limited number of folks to the nearby Crystal Lake Preserve.  This group will be limited to the number of people that can fit into 4 cars since the parking at the site is very limited.

Birdwalks – Oct. 15th

(7:45am – 8:45am)

Seminole Audubon will be leading a limited number of folks on a short trip to the nearby Crystal Lake Preserve.  We hope to have everyone back in time to attend the conservation sessions that begin at 9:00.  More details coming soon. 

Birding on Your Own

Scrub Jay by RJ Wiley

There is a self guided loop trail on the lower Wekiva approximately 5 miles from the hotel.  This would be a great option for those of you who would like to do some birding on your own.  Directions will be provided at the Assembly registration desk at the hotel.

Make your plans to attend the Flyways Fiesta on Thursday (for a behind the scenes tour at the Center for Birds of Prey),  a Field trip to one of Florida’s Special Places on Friday morning and the exciting activities planned for this year’s Assembly in Lake Mary! To register, please click here.  (To register by mail, contact Jonathan Webber at 850-222-2473 or jwebber@audubon.org.)

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