General Birding Resources:

Birding Code of Ethics (American Birding Association) -- click here to download

What binoculars are best for observing birds? Cornell's Lab of Ornothology offers some useful information on selecting binoculars for birding.  See --

Nine Tips for Beginning Bird Watchers. Cornell's Lab of Ornithology provides some useful tips for beginners. See --

Where to place your bird nest boxes? -- Cornell's Lab or Ornothology provides a concise description of nesting and habitat requirements for cavity-nesting birds, along with links to their species accounts, see

Local/Regional Birding/Wildlife Resources:

State Resources:

National Resources:

Various birding festivals throughout the United States (in chronological order):

Wichita Mountains Eagle Watch
January 6, 12, 13, 19, 20, 26, 27 and
February 2, 3, 9, 10 — Wichita Mountains National Wildlife Refuge, OK
An interpretive program at refuge headquarters is followed by a bus tour of the refuge’s Here's special use area to search for bald and golden eagles. $5 fee. Children must be 8 or older. Wheelchair accommodations by request. Tours begin at 1:30 p.m. and last about two and a half hours; tours include a short walk. Reserve beginning Dec. 31: 580-429-2151. Dress warmly and bring binoculars if possible.

Festival of the Cranes
Saturday, January 12, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. – Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge, AL
See resident sandhill cranes, whooping cranes and white pelicans. Enjoy a storyteller, nature films, live raptors, kids’ activities. The festival kicks off a year-long celebration of the refuge’s 75th anniversary.

Eagle Watch
Saturday, January 19, 26
Saturday February 2, 9, 16, 23
Saturday, March 2 — Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge, OK
Begin with an orientation at the refuge office at 9 a.m. Then take a guided bus tour to viewing sites to see nests through scopes.

Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival
Wednesday, January 23 – Monday, January 28 — Titusville, FL
The 16th annual event is the largest birding and wildlife festival in the United States, say organizers. Festival includes field trips to Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge.

San Francisco Bay Flyway Festival
Friday, February 8 – Sunday, February 10 — Mare Island, CA
The 17th annual festival includes field trips to San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge.

Bald Eagle Day
Saturday, February 9, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. — Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge, UT
Family festivities here are among eagle celebrations taking place this day around the state. The refuge will offer eagle-viewing guides, maps to other eagle locations and eagle education.

Winter Wings Festival
Thursday, February 16 – Sunday, February 19 — Klamath Basin, OR and CA
The 34nd annual festival celebrates the waterfowl-rich Klamath Basin, a major migratory stop on the Pacific Flyway. More than 80 percent of birds that use the flyway stop over in the Klamath Basin. The basin’s six national wildlife refuges attract a wide variety of waterfowl and raptors, many in astounding numbers. Popular festival events include an “owl prowl” at Klamath Marsh National Wildlife Refuge and field trips to other Klamath Basin refuges. See updates at

Whooping Crane Festival
Thursday, February 23 – Sunday, February 26 — Port Aransas, TX
“America's Birdiest Small Coastal City” hosts a festival that includes a field trip to Aransas National Wildlife Refuge to see cranes in their winter habitat.

San Diego Bird Festival
February 23 – 26 — San Diego, CA
This annual festival features field trips to three coastal San Diego National Wildlife Refuges. Birds to see include: Brandt’s cormorant, pied-billed grebe, black-vented shearwater.

Eagle Festival
Saturday, March 11 — Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, MD
The refuge’s 13th annual Eagle Festival features live raptor programs, kids’ activities, a photography workshop, a guided bird walk, exhibits and the popular Eagle Prowls. Free events for the whole family.

April 6 - 9 – Galveston, TX
The festival includes field trips to Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge and Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge.

Harney County Migratory Bird Festival
April 6 – 9 − Burns, OR
The festival features field trips to Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

Prairie Chicken Festival
April 8 – 9 — Attwater Prairie Chicken National Wildlife Refuge, TX
Enjoy tours of the refuge, native plants and Attwater prairie chickens on their booming grounds.

Bayou Teche Black Bear and Birding Festival
April 21 – 22— Franklin, Louisiana
The annual festival celebrates species found in North America’s largest river swamp, such as white pelicans and roseate spoonbills. Guided boat tours and paddling trips into Bayou Teche National Wildlife Refuge are featured attractions, along with a photo show, music and fireworks.

Birds and Blues Festival
Friday, April 19 – Sunday, April 21— 23, Pacific City, Oregon

Great Dismal Swamp Birding Festival 

April 20 - 22— Great Dismal Swamp National Wildlife Refuge, VA
Enjoy guided bird walks, owl prowls, refuge bus tours, photography and birding workshops. Free event registration begins mid-March. To register, call 757-986-3705.

Santee Birding and Nature Festival
April 26 – 28 — Santee National Wildlife Refuge, South Carolina
Join birders and naturalists at one of the state’s only nature festivals. Take field trips throughout the midlands of South Carolina. Learn about wonderful natural places and their inhabitants.

Balcones Songbird Festival
Friday, April 26 – Monday, April 29 — Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge, TX
Enjoy refuge tours and workshops.

Birding and Crystal Festival
April 21 – 22 — Salt Plains National Wildlife Refuge, OK
The annual festival typically features guided tours, workshops, decoy-carving demonstrations and selenite crystal digging contests.

Grays Harbor Shorebird Festival
May 5 – 7 — Hoquiam, WA
The festival, which coincides with the peak of spring shorebird migration on the Washington coast, includes field trips to Grays Harbor National Wildlife Refuge and other birding hot spots.

The Biggest Week in American Birding
May 5 – 14 — Northwest Ohio
This major bird festival takes place at the peak of spring warbler migration in the Lake Erie Marsh region of the state. The festival features field trips to Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge.

Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival
May 4 – 7 -- Homer, AK
The festival features workshops, tours, hikes and field trips to Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge. Birds to see include: Rufous hummingbird, horned puffin, red-necked stint.

Horicon Marsh Bird Festival
May 12 – 15 — Horicon National Wildlife Refuge, WI
Enjoy guided birding hikes, bus and boat tours, bird banding demonstrations and more.

Tualatin River Bird Festival
Saturday, May 12 — Tualatin River National Wildlife Refuge, OR
Enjoy nature photography workshops, a bike ride, river paddle trips, native basketry, nature journaling workshops, art and musicSpring Wings Bird Festival 

Kenai Pennisula Birding Festival
May 18 – 21 — Kenai Peninsula, AK
Festival features thousands of birds, children’s activities, discussions and field trips to Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. All ages and levels of experience welcome.

Festival of Birds
May 18 − 21 – Detroit Lakes, MN
Festival includes field trips to Tamarac, Hamden Slough and Agassiz National Wildlife Refuges.

Great Salt Lake Bird Festival
May 18 – 22 — Farmington, UT
This birding festival features field trips to Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge, a festival sponsor. Birds to see include: burrowing owl.

Ladd Marsh Bird Festival
May 19 – 21 — La Grande, OR
All events except field trips are free.  Registration is required to receive a passport to access the marsh for the weekend.

Down East Spring Birding Festival
May 26 – 29 — Near Calais, ME
The annual festival includes guided hikes, boat tours and expert presentations. It features field trips to Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge, one of the event sponsors.

Potholes & Prairie Birding Festival
June 14- 18 – Carrington, ND
Field trips to Arrowwood National Wildlife Refuge and Chase Lake National Wildlife Refuge are highlights of this festival celebrating remote prairie, wetland and meadow birding hot spots. .

Wings over Water Wildlife Festival
October 17 - 22— Outer Banks, NC
Pick from scores of talks and trips on birding, paddling, wildlife photography and natural history. Field trips will go to Pea Island and Alligator River National Wildlife Refuges. All proceeds go to the Coastal Wildlife Refuge Society, a nonprofit that supports national wildlife refuges in eastern North Carolina.

Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival
Thursday, November 7 – Monday, November 11 — Harlingen, TX
The festival includes field trips to Laguna Atascosa, Lower Rio Grande Valley and Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuges. Featured events include lectures, workshops, birding trips, boating on the Arroyo and other guided trips. Look for great kiskadees, green jays, Altamira orioles and chachalacas.

Festival of the Cranes
November 19 – 24 — Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, NM
Thrill to skiesful of sandhill cranes and snow geese at a world-famous birding festival. Enjoy tours, talks, workshops, field trips, dusk fly-ins and dawn fly-outs.