field trips

All field trips, unless otherwise posted, will meet at 8 AM at the parking lot in front of the Wild Bird Haven in the Del Monte Shopping Center in Monterey.


First Saturday of each month: Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine bird walks
Start out your first weekend of every month with a bird walk around the Elkhorn National Esuarine Research Reserve in Moss Landing. Contact: Rick Fournier 831- 633-0572 or the reserve office at 831-728-2822.

Sat. Sep. 6 - 9am-noon: Laguna Grande Park – Ebirding workshop using “Bird Log”
Although we will be birding the area, the primary purpose of this trip is learning how to use “Bird Log” on your smart phone. Keeping track of your bird sightings can be fun and easy. Make sure you have an Ebird account and have downloaded the Bird Log NA app. Meet: 9am Russian Orthodox Church parking lot. RSVP: Rita Carratello 831-375-0794

Sat. Sep. 13 – 8am-noon: Carmel River mouth
Join us for an excursion to the special access Odello restoration area. A former artichoke field, this area now has excellent riparian and marshland habitat and is a good place for waterfowl, raptors, and songbirds. We will bird parts of the lagoon and also the woodland along the Carmel River. Meet: 8am at Wild Bird Haven for carpooling. RSVP: Bill Hill 831-624-3300 or Michael Rieser 831-521-2499 

Sat. Sep. 20th - 7:30am-3pm: Andrew Molera State Park
Approximately 2.5 mile round trip on easily navigated trails, Andrew Molera State Park offers one of the most diverse ecosystems anywhere in California with a current eBird HotSpot count of 326 different species! From beginning to experienced birders, the walk will start in coastal scrub and quickly move into oak woodlands that gently slope toward the Big Sur River riparian habitat and end in a finale of panoramic views of the Pacific Coast that offers excellent sea watching opportunities. We can expect to see 50-80 different species on this outing ranging from warblers to gulls! My focus for the trip will be basic bird identification as well as introducing you to a route that will provide you with the greatest opportunity to find that rarity! After the main trip I will offer a side excursion to “Condor Overlook” where, with luck, we will have lunch amongst soaring California Condors Meet: 7:30am behind Crossroads Starbucks. RSVP: Paul Fenwick 831-262-0782 Rain Cancels.

Sat. Oct. 4 – 7:30am-noon: Moon Glow Dairy/Jetty Rd. Moss Landing
On the Central Coast, the last week in September through the first week of October is the premiere time to find a true rarity. During the peak of fall migration, Moonglow Dairy is just the spot that a Sharp-tailed Sandpiper or Ruff would likely make their appearance! Meet: 7:30am at Wild Bird Haven. RSVP: Paul Fenwick 831-262-0782 Rain cancels, and if access into Moonglow is too muddy we will reroute to Zumudowski SB.

Sat. Oct.11 – 7:50am-noon: Pajaro Dunes/Lee Rd. Watsonville
This half-day trip will focus on Watsonville Slough and the Pajaro River mouth. We'll start at the Lee Road warehouse area and enjoy waders and waterfowl, as well as any passerines in the weedy area. Then, it's on to Pajaro Dunes South for raptors, shorebirds, gulls, and waterfowl. Anything from a Snowy Plover to an American Bittern or a Bald Eagle is possible. Meet: 7:50am at Wild Bird Haven in Monterey to carpool, or those coming from the Santa Cruz area: please meet at 8:30am on the road’s edge by the fruit stand just past the Chevron station on Lee Rd., off of the Riverside Drive exit on Highway 1. RSVP: Nanci Adams 831-728-5803.

Sat. Oct. 18 – 8am-noon: Point Pinos Vagrant Traps
The season for vagrant songbirds peaks from Mid-Sept through Mid-Oct. Join us as we explore classic haunts around Pacific Grove's Point Pinos, including El Carmelo Cemetery, Esplanade Park, and the Point itself, in search of off-course migrants in addition to our regular avifauna. Meet: 8am Crespi Pond parking lot. RSVP: Blake Matheson 831-324-4914.

Sat. Nov. 1st –7:30-3PM: Andrew Molera State Park
See Sep. 20th description above for details.
Meet: 7:30am behind Crossroads Starbucks. RSVP: Paul Fenwick 831-262-0782
Rain Cancels.

Sat. Nov. 8 – 8am-noon: Kirby Park/Elkhorn Slough
Kirby Park is a great location to give you a real appreciation for the Elkhorn Slough Estuary and the important habitat it offers our wintering migrants. We can expect to see a good variety of shorebirds, loons, and gulls, along with a vast majority of the duck/goose species that make this area their home over the winter, like Blue-winged Teal. If we are lucky, we may even catch a glimpse of a Bald Eagle soaring the thermals above! We will bird 2 miles round-trip down the slough trail to the boardwalk that crosses over the pickleweed where there can be outstanding views of the slough and mudflats. Meet:  8am at Wild Bird Haven for carpooling. RSVP: Paul Fenwick 831-262-0782.

Sat. Nov. 15  – 7:50am-noon: Struve Slough/Watsonville
These two locales provide some of Watsonville's best birding, and drought permitting, host a wide variety of birds from Hooded Mergansers to occasional Mew Gulls to American Bitterns. For this half-day trip, we'll start at the Harkins Slough Road bridge; the parking lot area there can host wintering Townsend's Warblers, Cedar Waxwings, and other passerines. After birding the slough itself, we'll move on to the Kearney-Ford loop and Watsonville Slough. Shoreline willows, islands, and open water provide habitat for a large variety of birds. Meet: 7:50am at Wild Bird Haven in Monterey to carpool, or those coming from the Santa Cruz area: meet at 8:30am in Watsonville in the right-hand parking lot just past Westridge Drive on Harkins Slough Road. Please do not go to the trail head at the back of the West Marine parking lot. RSVP: Nanci Adams 831-728-5803.

Sat. Nov. 29 – 8AM-noon: Laguna Grande Park – SPECIAL INTERIOR TRIP!
This city lake area is one of our best locations for seeing a variety of birds, from vagrant warblers in the willow and eucalyptus trees to some of the marsh species like Sora. Join Chris for this special trip into the interior of the park where new public access is being enhanced. We will spend our time exploring previously inaccessible areas inside the 10 acres at the Southeast end as well as new access into Monterey’s one acre portion at the Northwest end.
Meet: 8am at the bridge below the Russian Orthodox Church. RSVP: Chris Hartzell 831-375-9533

Sat. Dec. 13 – 7:30am-3pm: Andrew Molera State Park
See above Sept. 20th description above for details.
Meet: 7:30am behind Crossroads Starbucks. RSVP: Paul Fenwick 831-262-0782
Rain Cancels.

Sat. Dec. 20 – 8am-noon: Moss Landing/Zmudowski Beach State Park
The Moss Landing area is a great location that will offer us a large variety of species that call this area home during the winter. This trip will be an adventure for the first time birder to the experienced individual with a focus on Shorebird and basic Gull ID’s. During the 2013 Moss Landing Christmas Bird Count 101 species were counted for the day and a large count number is to be expected. Meet: 8:00am at Wild Bird Haven for carpooling. RSVP: Paul Fenwick 831-263-0782.

Monterey Audubon Society, P.O Box 5656, Carmel, CA 93921                                         © Chris R Tenney 2012