Spring Big Day

A Thorough Birding Exploration Of WNC

White-eyed Vireo by Ventures Birding

May 18, 2021

Summer Tanager by Keith Watson

Register by clicking the ‘book now’ button above, or by contacting the Ventures office. We accept credit cards for an additional fee (2.9% for MC, Visa, Discover; 3.9% for AmEx), but you may also pay by bank transfer, cash, check, or money order. This Venture is limited to 12 participants

Departure: We will meet and carpool from the Folk Art Center, located at milepost 382 on the Blue Ridge Parkway in Asheville, NC. Time: 4:00 AM (so that we can hear/see owls and nightjars!) – 6:00 PM (no obligation to stay the full day!) Cost: $100 (because of COVID, meals are not included)

This Venture has been designed around the goal of seeing and hearing as many bird species as possible in one day in the WNC region. This is a perfect trip for birders looking to expand their NC state list or life list, or for those who are simply looking for a fun, bird-filled day (we should see over 100 species!). Since we will have limited daylight to find all our targets, we will be moving at a faster pace and we'll be out for longer than our typical day trips. Be sure to bring a water bottle (we will have water), comfortable footwear, rain jacket or umbrella, hat and sunscreen, and a light jacket.

Our day will begin before sunrise with the hope of finding nocturnal species such as Great Horned, Eastern Screech and Northern Saw-whet Owl, as well as Eastern Whip-poor-will. Once the sun comes up, we plan on visiting as many different habitats as possible to maximize our species total. Between cruising the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Green River Gamelands, we will expect a whole host of warblers, vireos, thrushes, flycatchers and more. We’ll check the broad Mills River Valley for open country species like Eastern Meadowlark, raptors, and any shorebirds that might still be passing through. We will also visit several city lakes for any straggling ducks or wading species, as well as any spots where there are rare, uncommon or otherwise unusual birds hanging out. We will bird until 6:00 PM or so, or until participants want to end! There is of course, no obligation to stay for longer than you wish – it will certainly be a long day! Our exact itinerary is to be determined – let us know of any specific targets you have beforehand and we will do our best to accommodate everyone’s wishes.

In addition to all the typical backyard birds, we hope to see/hear: Northern Saw-whet, Barred, Great Horned, and Eastern Screech-Owls; 15-20 species of warbler (including Cerulean, Swainson’s and Kentucky); Hermit and Wood Thrushes, Veery; Blue-headed, Red-eyed and Yellow-throated Vireos; Red Crossbill; Winter Wren; Red-breasted, White-breasted and Brown-headed Nuthatches; Yellow-billed and Black-billed Cuckoos; 5 species of hawk; Indigo Bunting; Rose-breasted and Blue Grosbeaks; Summer and Scarlet Tanagers; Least, Alder and Willow Flycatchers, Eastern Wood-Pewee, and so much more.