Calendar

Apr
26
Fri
Spring Migration Celebration Weekend
Apr 26 – Apr 28 all-day

Minnesota has about 444 different species of birds, and almost 90% of them migrate! What is the advantage of traveling long distances? What are the things you must know to migrate? Does the whole population of a species go at once? How do you learn the routes? Is the timing different this year, it seems like things are moving earlier than normal this year? It is a complicated business, and each species has its own fascinating story of how they get it done.  Join us for an exploration of spring migration in Duluth.

Hawk Ridge has been monitoring the fall bird migration since the 1950’s, but did you know that the West Skyline Hawk Count ranks as one of the top sites in the US for numbers and diversity of raptors during the spring migration? Late April is likely to provide a wide variety and ages of raptors traveling through on their way north, as well as plenty of other species of birds.

This field-oriented program will explore different locations based on what is happening with the weather and the birds! Late April can be a mix of arriving birds, residents, and birds that have spent the winter here from points north. The weather can be unpredictable, so we have an indoor space where we can meet to warm up, dry off and explore things indoors if needed. We will take advantage of a variety of locations including time at the spring count locations to learn what raptors are flying and how to identify who is who. We will go where the birds are, so beyond the spring count sites, other locations might include Park Point, portions of Waabizheshikana: The Marten Trail (The Western Waterfront Trail), Mud Lake, Stony Point, and others. CLICK HERE FOR THE BASIC SCHEDULE or see below. Note: Schedule will maintain basic timeline, but locations may vary depending on conditions.

Field trips and sessions will be lead by Margie Menzies, Hawk Ridge Education Director, and assisted by other Hawk Ridge Staff/Volunteers, and other potential experts present through the weekend.

What to bring: Dress in layers for weather, hiking shoes/boots, binoculars (note: we will have loaner binoculars available for use), water/drink, and other optional items might include field guide, camera, spotting scope, snacks, and portable chair for the sessions at the West Skyline Spring Count.

REGISTRATION INFO

The workshop includes 8 sessions with breaks for meals and transit between locations. Full workshop fee is $180.00 ($200.00 after April 15) for Hawk Ridge Members, Students, Master Naturalists or $250.00 ($300.00 after April 15 for non-members.) If you’d like to attend, but need financial help to do it, please contact Janelle at jlong@hawkridge.org for assistance- we want our programming accessible to all.

NOTE:  Full weekend workshop discounted registration due by Mon. 4/15. The workshop is limited to 15 participants with minimum of 5. Please complete the following online form to register for the Hawk Ridge Spring Migration Weekend.

Further information regarding logistics will be provided to participants prior to the workshop. General visitor viewing at the West Skyline Spring Count takes place daily through May 31 (visiting the site is free of charge and does not require registration – you can just show up and enjoy the migration with us!). Questions? Contact Margie Menzies at mmenzies@hawkridge.org

CLICK BELOW REGISTER! 



Trip options



SCHEDULE

Friday, April 26- 6:30-8:00 PM

VIRTUAL Spring Migration Intro Session (via Zoom)

We will begin the workshop with an online overview session addressing the mechanics of migration, how weather impacts bird movement, and tools to use to predict bird movement, and other material better suited for online presentation. The Zoom link for the presentation will be emailed to you the week of the presentation.

Saturday, April 27- 6:30-8:30 AM

IN PERSON Park Point Field Trip

Join us bright and early Saturday morning to start our birding at Park Point and discover who’s on the lake, who’s in the harbor, and who’s present on the land between. Park Point is one of the great birding destinations in Duluth during migration. A wide variety of waterfowl can be seen here- unusual loon species, shorebirds, and plenty of songbirds as well. Many birds migrate over the length of the point as they move through the area, which can be breathtaking! Plan to meet at Park Point Recreation Area in the main parking area across from the restroom building and community sailing dock.

Saturday, April 27- 9:30-11:30 AM

IN PERSON West Skyline Spring Count Intro Field Session

We will spend the morning at the Hawk Ridge West Skyline Spring Count. We will focus on basic ID skills by families of birds, learn about where these birds are coming from and where they are likely headed, and learn basic flight styles at the count area. Note: We will plan to meet at Twin Ponds Parking area on West Skyline Parkway and have a short hike in via the road in to the Enger count site (below Enger Park). However, if the winds are from the East or Northeast directly off the lake, we may need to change meeting location to the Thompson Hill count site (below Thompson Hill rest area) or move indoors with inclement weather. We will give notice of this change via cell phone (be sure to include cell number in your registration information, so we can contact you if needed).

Saturday, April 27- 11:30 AM-1:00 PM

LUNCH BREAK (NO SESSION)

Lunch and creature comfort break. Restrooms are generally not very close- though there are usually porta-potties at Enger Park. We won’t cover content formally during this time- but feel free to bring a lunch if you just want to stick around the count area during this break. Otherwise plan to meet back at the same location as the morning count session for the afternoon session.

Saturday, April 27- 1:00-2:30 or 3:00 PM

IN PERSON Continue at West Skyline Spring Count Site

We will spend the afternoon at the Hawk Ridge West Skyline Spring Count. We will take advantage of whatever happens to fly by in the afternoon, but concentrate on specific flight behaviors, natural history information, Hawk Ridge research efforts, and of course identification basics for families of raptors covering Accipiters, Buteos, Falcons, Eagles, Vultures, Harriers, and Osprey during the weekend. Note: We will plan to meet at Twin Ponds Parking area on West Skyline Parkway and have a short hike in via the road to the Enger count site (below Enger Park). However, if the winds are from the East or Northeast directly off the lake, we may need to change meeting location to the Thompson Hill count site (below Thompson Hill rest area) or move indoors with inclement weather. We will give notice of this change via cell phone (be sure to include cell number in your registration information, so we can contact you if needed).

Saturday, April 27- 3:00-5:30 PM

IN PERSON Later Afternoon Field Trip

Late afternoon and early evening can be a good time for watching bird behaviors as they begin to settle prior to the night. Location TBD based on conditions. Specific directions for this location will be provided.

Sunday, April 28- 6:30-8:30 AM

IN PERSON Indian Point & Waabizheshikana: The Marten Trail Field Trip

Indian Point will be our destination this morning. This is a great location for exploring the arrival of early passerine species along the woody hillside that surrounds the public campground area. Wetlands and waterfowl also surround the campground area. Specific directions for this location will be provided.

Sunday, April 28- 9:30-11:30 AM

IN PERSON West Skyline Spring Count Field Session

We will spend the morning at the Hawk Ridge West Skyline Spring Count. We will of course take advantage of whatever happens to fly by in the morning, but concentrate on specific flight behaviors, natural history information, Hawk Ridge research efforts, and of course identification basics for families of raptors covering Accipiters, Buteos, Falcons, Eagles, Vultures, Harriers, and Osprey during the weekend. Note: We will plan to meet at Twin Ponds Parking area on West Skyline Parkway and have a short hike in via the road to the Enger count site (below Enger Park). However, if the winds are from the East or Northeast directly off the lake, we may need to change meeting location to the Thompson Hill count site (below Thompson Hill rest area) or move indoors with inclement weather. We will give notice of this change via cell phone (be sure to include cell number in your registration information, so we can contact you if needed).

Sunday, April 28, 11:30 AM-1:00 PM

LUNCH BREAK (NO SESSION)

Lunch and creature comfort break. Restrooms are generally not very close- though there are usually porta-potties at Enger Park. We won’t cover content formally during this time- but feel free to bring a lunch if you just want to stick around the count area during this break. Otherwise plan to meet back at the same location as the morning count session for the afternoon session.

Sunday, April 28, 1:00-3:00 PM

IN PERSON Location TBD determined by group- either continue at Spring Count Location or bird another Duluth area location.

Specific directions for this location will be provided as needed.

Margie Menzies is a lifelong naturalist, educator, and lover of birds, rocks and all things of the natural world. She spent years in the formal classroom as a science teacher but abandoned the indoors for the great outdoor classroom. Margie Menzies joined Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory in 2011 as a fall naturalist and is currently the full-time year-round Education Director at Hawk Ridge. She has a passion for birds and helps lead the songbird banding at Hawk Ridge during fall migration as well as two MAPS stations studying summer breeding birds at Hawk Ridge, Sugarloaf Cove, and assists at the Wolf Ridge station when she can. She recently added coordinating birding tours for Hawk Ridge to her job, exploring the diverse world of birds with fellow travelers in incredible international locations. She has served as the naturalist at Sugarloaf Cove Nature Center up the North Shore in Schroeder, MN and served as an adjunct member of the University of Minnesota Duluth, Education Department, and has long been an instructor in the UMN Extension Minnesota Master Naturalist certification program. She has a BA in Biology from Bethel University and a MA in Education from University of St. Thomas and was recently awarded the Minnesota Association for Environmental Education 2023 Non-formal Educator of the Year Award. Learning is a lifelong pursuit and sharing the wonders of the natural world with people of all ages is Margie’s happy place.  mmenzies@hawkridge.org or 218-428-8722.

Sep
20
Fri
Hawk Ridge Weekend Festival
Sep 20 – Sep 22 all-day
Hawk Weekend Festival 2024
Sep 20 – Sep 22 all-day
SAVE THE DATES!
Fri. Sept. 20th – Sun. Sept. 22nd

Come and celebrate the amazing fall bird migration with us! Hawk Weekend is the annual festival held by Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory in Duluth, MN. Bird migration research and education programs have been shared with visitors throughout the world each fall at Hawk Ridge Nature Reserve for over 50 years! Join us for a fun weekend with a variety of birding field trips, nature hikes, programs, and activities for all ages!

Registration and more info coming late spring!

General Schedule of Events 

Friday, September 20th: Morning/Afternoon Field Trip(s), Migration Viewing/Programs at Hawk Ridge Nature Reserve, Evening Kick-off Celebration (social, speaker, annual meeting) at Great Lakes Aquarium.

Saturday, September 21st: Morning Field Trip(s), Songbird Banding, Migration Viewing/Programs at Hawk Ridge Nature Reserve, Afternoon Hawkwatching Workshop, Evening Owl Programs

Sunday, September 22nd: Morning Field Trip(s), Songbird Banding, Migration Viewing/Programs at Hawk Ridge Nature Reserve, Afternoon Hawkwatching Workshop, Evening Owl Programs

*Potential for Additional Evening Owl Programs Thurs 9/19, Fri 9/20 & Mon 9/23

Lodging: Click HERE for some lodging information or go to visitduluth.com

Hope to see you at the festival this fall! 

Oct
20
Sun
Birding Guatemala’s Highlands and Lake Atitlán
Oct 20 – Oct 30 all-day

Guatemala is a richly diverse cultural center and a lush and vibrant paradise for birders. Set in the heart of Central America, it sits within one of the Western Hemisphere’s prime migratory corridors. Join Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory’s Margie Menzies and an expert local guide to explore a variety of low and high altitude habitats and see firsthand many of the rare and endemic species that inhabit this biodiverse area. Learn about local conservation efforts, including the Panajachel-based Asociación Vivamos Mejor, which seeks to train nearby residents to become birding and nature guides.

Highlights

  • Bird the lower and upper trails at Los Tarrales, a natural reserve with diverse forest types and a 340-species bird list that includes regional endemics like the Horned Guan, Highland Guan, Azure-rumped Tanager, and Blue-tailed Hummingbird.
  • Explore Santiago Atitlán, a town on a bay of Lake Atitlán known for its many women’s cooperatives, traditional textile weaving, and rich Maya culture.
  • Visit Corazón del Bosque Reserve for a chance to see Mountain Trogon, White-naped Brushfinch, and with luck, the uncommon Pink-headed Warbler.
  • Navigate across Lake Atitlán to visit the archaeological site of San Andrés Semetabaj to look for species like the Inca Dove, Great-tailed Grackle, Bronzed Cowbird, Vaux’s Swift, and more.
  • Meet representatives of Asociación Vivamos Mejor, a private nonprofit organization committed to improving the quality of life in communities surrounding Lake Atitlán.

Click HERE for an Overview, Itinerary, Pricing, Travel Information, How to Enroll and Resources. *Please note space is limited and deadline to register in full is July 17, 2024. For more information or questions, please contact Debbie Jordan at debbie@holbrooktravel.com or 866-748-6146. Or Margie Menzies at mmenzies@hawkridge.org or 218-428-8722.

Nov
7
Thu
Hawk Migration Association of North America (HMANA) 50th Conference
Nov 7 – Nov 10 all-day
HMANA 50th Conference in Duluth
Nov 7 – Nov 10 all-day
SAVE THE DATE!
HMANA 50th Conference in Duluth
November 7-10, 2024

The Hawk Migration Association of North America (HMANA) is holding their 50th Anniversary Conference in Duluth, MN with Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory as a partner in helping with their event and sharing the fall bird migration, as part of their celebration! Conference info and details will be found here: https://www.hmana.org/50thconference/

Join HMANA in celebrating the past 50 years, the people, the places, and the raptors while we also look to the future of the next 50 years, what it might bring and what we hope for.  We are calling on all hawk watchers, raptor enthusiasts, raptor biologists, and HMANA friends across the Americas to join us in person or virtually for this momentous conference and anniversary celebration!

Fifty years ago, HMANA was the first organization established to create standardized protocols for conducting long-term hawk migration counts. As a result, these data collection methods have been effectively used at over 200 spring and fall count sites across the Americas. Site data is centralized in HMANA’s database, HawkCount.org which has now grown to be the largest raptor migration monitoring database in the world.

Today HMANA is tracking trends in North American raptors better than ever before, thanks to thousands of hawkwatchers and HMANA’s steadfast, inspiring leadership. But perhaps just as important is how watchsites across the continent are connecting people to raptors and their conservation. A new education initiative with schools is being piloted in Michigan and will be shared by teachers attending the HMANA 50th conference as an exciting new step to engage young people. If you have ever witnessed  the enthusiasm of newcomers seeing an eagle sailing overhead for the first time, you know the special connections to birds that hawkwatches help provide.

Hawk Ridge Bird Observatory, in Duluth, Minnesota, has monitored hawks for more than 50 years. Its location is central to HMANA sites across the Americas and is well-known for its late fall hawk flights. Conference attendees will have the opportunity to visit the Hawk Ridge daily and take local birding trips to unique sites, such as Sax-Zim Bog. We expect birdwatchers and hawk enthusiasts from across the continent will flock to the conference to celebrate HMANA and to view the remarkable spectacle of raptor migration at the renowned Hawk Ridge.

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