Winter Bird Festival has something for everyone

ST. GEORGE – The Red Cliffs chapter of the National Audubon Society will be holding its annual St. George Winter Bird Festival on Jan. 26-28.

A part of the Red Cliffs Audubon’s annual community outreach program, the festival will feature a plethora of presentations, workshops and field trips. Each night of the festival will include speakers who are experts in their fields. There will also be children’s activities and live bird exhibits.

“There’s something for everyone,” said Marilyn Davis, the festival’s chairwoman.

A bird photo contest will also be held, with entries being featured at the Red Cliffs Mall from Jan. 13-28. Winners of the contest will be announced at a banquet on Jan. 28.

The event will kick-off at 6 p.m. on Jan. 26, at the Best Western Abby Inn. Rick Fridell, a wildlife photographer with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, will give a presentation on the wintering birds of Washington County.

A series of presentations will take place over the next two days at the Tonaquint Nature Area and Nature Center.  Among the presentations offered during the festival will be an introduction to birding, the economic benefits of wildlife watching, the facts and fictions of desert life, and many other subjects related to birding and the natural world.

Field trips will go to such areas as Zion National Park, Sand Hollow and Quail Creek, Lytle Ranch, Beaver Dam Wash, a variety of local ponds and other locations.

Davis described each presenter and field guide as “great people who have been [involved in birding] for years.”

Registration for certain field trips is required, as seating is limited.

Lynn Chamberlain, a conservation outreach manager for DWR, will be speaking on Utah wildlife at the Eccles Art Center on the Dixie State College campus from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Jan. 27. Chamberlain will also be taking a group on a photography trip at 7:30 a.m. the following morning.

A banquet will be held be at the Best Western Abby Inn on the night of Jan. 28, and will feature keynote speaker Chris Parish. Parish is a wildlife biologist and supervisor of the Condor Field Project for the Peregrine Fund. A registration fee of $20 is required for the banquet.

With the exception of the banquet, all presentations and field trips are free to the public.

Additional information can be found at the City of St. George and Red Cliffs Audubon websites

The Tonaguint Center is located at 1851 S. Dixie Dr. is St. George. Anyone with questions concerning the Winter Bird Festival is encouraged to call Marilyn Davis at 435-673-0996.

mkessler@stgnews.com

Copyright 2011 St. George News. This material may not be published or rewritten without written consent.

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