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 this article on choosing binoculars.

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

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.

Local/Regional Birding/Wildlife Resources

State Resources

National Resources

Birding Festivals

Due to COVID-19, many festivals have been cancelled, suspended, or changed to an online format. We encourage you to investigate the options using the links below.

Wichita Mountains Eagle Watch 
As of the most recent check, this festival has been suspended. Please check their website for updates.

Festival of the Cranes
January 9, 2021. Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge, AL
More about the festival here.
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
January-March — Sequoyah National Wildlife Refuge, OK
As of the most recent check, events are ongoing. Please check their website for current event information.

Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival
January 29-31, 2021 — Titusville, FL
Online in 2021. Promoted as the largest birding and wildlife festival in the United States.

San Francisco Bay Flyway Festival
February 5-7, 2021 — Mare Island, CA
While the dates of this event have been changed to 2021, the information does not appear to be up to date.

Bear River Migratory Bird Refuge, UT
As of the most recent check, events are ongoing, but traditional events are being announced on Twitter and Facebook and do not appear to include the eagle festival of past years.

Winter Wings Festival
The 2021 festival has been cancelled, but we are hopeful a 2022 festival will happen. See updates at

Whooping Crane Festival— Port Aransas, TX
As of the most recent check, events are ongoing, but are limited. The traditional festival has been cancelled.

San Diego Bird Festival
February 17-21, 2021 — San Diego, CA
This annual festival features field trips to three coastal San Diego National Wildlife Refuges. The festival is happening in 2021, but due to COVID-19 the format is changing.

Eagle Festival — Blackwater National Wildlife Refuge, MD
This event appears to have been cancelled.

Wings and Wetlands Birding Festival (virtual)
March 24-26, 2021 — Kansas at Cheyenne Bottoms and Quivira National Wildlife Refuge

April 15-18, 2021 – Galveston, TX
The festival includes field trips to Brazoria National Wildlife Refuge and Anahuac National Wildlife Refuge.

Harney County Migratory Bird Festival
April 22-25, 2021 − Burns, OR
The festival features field trips to Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. For 2021, the festival will be virtual.

Prairie Chicken Festival
April 8-9, 2021 — 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
Postponed until further notice — 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
Postponed until further notice  — Pacific City, Oregon

Great Dismal Swamp Birding Festival 
No information at this time — 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.

Balcones Songbird Festival
No information at this time — Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge, TX
Enjoy refuge tours and workshops.

Grays Harbor Shorebird Festival
May (tba) — 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 6-10, 2021 — Northwest Ohio
For 2021, this festival will be virtual. 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 6-9, 2021 — Homer, AK
This festival will be in a "hybird" format for 2021. 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
2021 details have not been released. — Horicon National Wildlife Refuge, WI
Enjoy guided birding hikes, bus and boat tours, bird banding demonstrations and more.

Tualatin River Bird Festival
2021 event tba, 2020 event was virtual — 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 

Festival of Birds
May 20, 2021 – Detroit Lakes, MN
Final plans for the festival have not been announced. Festival includes field trips to Tamarac, Hamden Slough and Agassiz National Wildlife Refuges.

Great Salt Lake Bird Festival
May 13-16, 2021 — 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
2021 details have not been released — 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 2-31, 2021 — Near Calais, ME
The 2021 festival will be a hybrid format.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
2021 details have not been released; the 2020 festival was cancelled – 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
2021 details have not been released — 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
November 10-14, 2021 — 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 2021; there will be a festival, but the dates have not been released yet — 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.