Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service Presents:
Birding the Hills
Monday, October 7, 2019 to Friday, October 11, 2019
Tour Duration: 5 days (Monday 4:30 pm – Friday 1:30 PM)
Registration Fee: $850
(Includes lunch and dinner during program and transportation)
$500 Deposit due to reserve your spot
Tour Host City: Fredericksburg, TX
Participation Limited to 15 Participants
Great for Beginner and Intermediate Birders
Photography Opportunities – including a famous nature photography location
ACCESS TO AMAZING PRIVATE LANDS – some have NEVER been birded before!
Join us in Gillespie County in the heart of the Texas Hill Country for three full days of birding in the Edwards Plateau ecoregion! Upon arrival, you will learn about the area and expected species while enjoying a wonderful welcome dinner. The next three days will be full of birding on private ranches in a variety of habitats, with educational programs each day at lunchtime. We will travel through the unique habitats of the Fredericksburg area to find target species such as Golden-cheeked Warbler, Black-Capped Vireo, Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Blue Grosbeak, and Zone-tailed Hawk. *Schedule & Locations are subject to change based upon landowners, birds, and weather issues*
Hotel Recommendations (if you need more please call Emily Grant at 830-774-7591):
Inn on Barons Creek: 830-990-9202
Peach Tree Inn: 830-997-2117
Vacasa Home Rentals: 830-515-4787 (We highly recommend the Fredericksburg office.)
*There are weekend festivals every week in Fredericksburg so please book your hotel or home early…NOW is not too early*
*A detailed schedule will be sent out to participants once registered*
Departure each morning will be between 6:30 – 7:30am from the Gillespie County Extension Office. We will be in the filed all day Tuesday – Thursday. We will have meals in the field and return to the Gillespie County Extension Office each evening between 8 – 9:30 pm.
These days will be FULL days with about 1-2 hours of down time each day during lunch. Walking will be moderate to difficult terrain depending on the ranch. Participants should be prepared to walk between 2-5 miles each day. You will get your steps in!
We will have a variety of catered meals throughout the trip. We will have a vegetarian option and some gluten-free and dairy-free options at each meal.
Fall in southwest Texas can be lovely! Daytime highs are usually in the low 80s, with nighttime lows in the mid 50s. However, unexpected weather can occur at any time, including temperatures far above or below the averages. Check the forecast before your trip and pack accordingly. We recommend a good rain coat and any protective gear needed for your birding equipment in case of rain.
We recommend that you check the weather as you pack for your trip and be prepared for the unexpected! Fall in Texas can be lovely but is also unpredictable. Recommended clothing to pack includes a light jacket, a rain jacket, long pants, shorts, long-sleeved shirts, and short-sleeved shirts. Sturdy walking/hiking shoes are a must. We will be fairly remote for most of the trip: cell phone service will be limited. In the case of inclement weather during the program, we may modify our schedule. No refunds will given due to weather.
Please bring any equipment that you would like to use for birding, such as binoculars, spotting scopes, cameras, and field guides.
Cell phone service is limited throughout the areas we will travel.
Insect and snake protection
Mosquitoes, horse flies, gnats, chiggers, and other biting insects live in this region. While they will not be out in full force at this time of year, biting insects may be still be encountered during hikes and walks. Please bring insect repellent. Snake gaiters will be provided if participants desire to use them, although we will mainly be walking in well-maintained areas.
Participants will be required to sign a liability waiver. Waivers will be emailed to participants to bring with them to check in on Monday at 4:30 pm. Participants who do not sign a form will not be able to join in the program activities.