2020 Spring Gathering & Field Trips

From: $15.00

 

All trips on Saturday are a full day (approximately 6:00 am – 3:30 p.m.) Please indicate only ONE choice for Saturday and ONE choice for Sunday morning. BIG DAY trips will begin at 4:30 a.m.  As trips reach maximum capacity they will be indicated as FIELD TRIPS FULL/Out of Stock.

Registrants will be notified by the email provided of exact start times prior to the Spring Gathering weekend.

A $15 registration fee (per person) will be automatically added to your cart at checkout.

Register one or more people below. Enter attendee information, select field trips and meal choices.  When finished, click on “Add to Cart” and another blank registration form will appear.  Add additional persons or go directly to your cart and check-out. You will receive confirmation of your purchase transaction by email.

Deadline for registration is April 15 and refunds will not be granted after this date. 

 

Spring Gathering

Available

Name as you’d like it to appear on badge. * 

Emergency Contact Name * 

Please list someone who will NOT be accompanying you on this trip.

Emergency Contact Phone Number * 

(XXX) XXX-XXXX

Chapter / Affiliate

Friday Night Program * 

Pizza, light snacks and cash bar followed by weekend welcome and program.

Saturday Lunch * 

Saturday Night Dinner * 

Sunday Lunch * 

No Field Trips Selected – optional

Check this option if you are only purchasing meals.

Available

Exploration of the Geological & Archaeological History of the Central Illinois River Valley (Saturday) FIELD TRIP FULL – optional

Join us for a 300-million-year journey of the geological and archaeological history of the central Illinois River valley in one day. With field guide in hand, we will begin the day at the remains of an ocean beach formed when Illinois was located near the planet’s equator. Overlooking the present-day valley, we will imagine the confluence of the Ancient Mississippi and Teays rivers. Standing among colossal boulders transported by a late Ice Age flood, we will recount the formation of the Illinois River. Inspection of massive mounds of earth constructed by Native Americans provides an opportunity to reflect on the extraordinary record of human history in this valley. And on the banks of the restored Thompson Lake, we will envision the ecological past of the Illinois River and the importance of its future. While on our journey, each vantage of history also provides an opportunity to witness the current avian residents of the valley. Registration fee for this trip includes van transportation.

Out of stock

BIG DAY Team Josh (Saturday) – optional

New for 2020 ! READY - SET - BIRD !! Fast paced competition hits the Illinois River Valley. Team Josh Engel versus Team Adam Sell will launch early in search of as many birds as possible. The team with the most birds will be declared winners of the first Spring Gathering Big Day Competition. Side bets encouraged. Registrants will travel by van. No boundaries, only birds.

Available

BIG DAY Team Adam (Saturday) – optional

Available

Emiquon Preserve/Chautauqua NWR (Saturday) FIELD TRIP FULL – optional

Tour with Illinois Audubon Society Executive Director, Jim Herkert at The Nature Conservancy's Emiquon Preserve and Emiquon National Fish & Wildlife Refuge. Trip will continue after lunch across the river at and around the Chautauqua National Fish & Wildlife Refuge guided by Andy Gilbert, Waterfowl Ecologist with the Forbes Biological Station. Search both sides of the river in wetland and upland areas for migrants. In past years eBirders have recorded 161 species at these sites between April 28 and May 6. Species include plovers, sandpipers, willet, whimbrel; white-faced ibis, dowitchers, rails, ducks, gulls, terns, sandhill crane, herons; great egret, pipit, warblers, vireos, flycatchers, sparrows, bobolink, dickcissel, horned lark, swallows, woodpeckers, bald eagle, osprey, peregrine falcon and Cooper’s hawk.

Out of stock

Chautauqua NWR/Emiquon Preserve (Saturday) – optional

Tour in and around the Chautauqua National Fish & Wildlife Refuge guided by Andy Gilbert, Waterfowl Ecologist with the Forbes Biological Station. Trip will continue after lunch across the river at the Nature Conservancy's Emiquon Preserve and Emiquon National Fish & Wildlife Refuge with Illinois Audubon Society Executive Director, Jim Herkert. Search wetland and upland areas for migrants on both sides of the river. In past years eBirders have recorded 161 species at these sites between April 28 and May 6. Species include plovers, sandpipers, willet, whimbrel; white-faced ibis, dowitchers, rails, ducks, gulls, terns, sandhill crane, herons; great egret, pipit, warblers, vireos, flycatchers, sparrows, bobolink, dickcissel, horned lark, swallows, woodpeckers, bald eagle, osprey, peregrine falcon and Cooper’s hawk.

Out of stock

Dickson Mounds Museum Trail & Therkildsen Field Station (Saturday) – optional

Early morning birding on and around the grounds of Dickson Mounds Museum with field trip leader Randy Schietzelt. Hike through prairie and woodland habitats with plenty of edges to find migrants, including warblers (blackpoll, blue-winged, common yellowthroat, Kentucky, northern waterthrush, ovenbird, prairie, Tennessee, yellow-breasted chat), Bell’s and blue-headed vireo, sparrows (lark, vesper, white-throated), gray cheeked thrush, ruby-crowned kinglet, and pileated woodpecker. Walking will be slightly unlevel at times on primitive paths. After lunch, Tom Rothfus, Director of the Therkildsen Field Station at Emiquon, will take us on a tour of the field station and discuss the science and research being conducted. Attendees will enjoy the opportunity to participate in a hands-on lake water sampling activity at the station.

Available

Sand Ridge State Forest (Saturday) FIELD TRIP FULL – optional

Plenty of birding opportunity in this 7,200-acre forest, the largest of Illinois' state forests, with sweeping expanses of native oak-hickory woodland, extensive pine plantations, sprawling open fields, grasslands and completely unique sand prairies. Today it remains one of the few places in Illinois that supports an intriguing variety of plants and animals more associated with the southwest than the Midwest, including badger, pocket gopher, silvery bladderpod and prickly pear cactus. Veteran field trip leader Pat Ward will guide the group on a journey through this unique property located in Mason County. We can expect to see ovenbird, indigo bunting, veery, scarlet tanager Connecticut, blackpoll and hooded warblers, sparrows and even possibly an American bittern. The lunch location will be Forbes Field Station where we might even pick up a few shorebirds or waterfowl too. Participants on this trip will be transported by van.

Out of stock

Illinois Nature Preserves of Mason County (Saturday) – optional

Discover some of the hidden gems of Mason County on a field trip lead by Angell Moorehouse, Natural Areas Preservation Specialist with the Illinois Nature Preserves Commission. Locations such as Sand Prairie Scrub Oak Nature Preserve, Long Branch Nature Preserve and Revis Hill Prairie Nature Preserve will provide opportunities for spring migrant viewing of warblers, vireos, sparrows, tanagers, nuthatch, grosbeak, kinglet, and wild turkey . Hiking will be strenuous at times, but will be worth the effort in order to visit some of these lesser known areas.

Available

Banner Marsh State Fish & Wildlife Area (Saturday) – optional

Join regional premier birders Pete Fenner and Maury Brucker as they bird one of their often-visited and very favorite areas in the Illinois River valley. Formerly farmed and strip mined, Banner Marsh has been restored to freshwater marsh with nearly 200 lakes. Its vast acres of grassland and shrubland provide excellent habitat for migrating and local waterfowl. Expect a good variety of ducks and coots by the thousands. Shorebirds, waders, black-crowned night herons, marsh wrens and sora rails. Sparrows and other birds of open fields. Ospreys and northern harriers.

Available

Emiquon Preserve Hoover Trail Hike/Illinois River Biological Field Station (Saturday) FIELD TRIP FULL – optional

The Hoover Trail traverses the upland area of The Emiquon Preserve on its western ridge. The hike takes us past forest along Dickson Creek and across open fields at the top of the ridge, with opportunities to see a wide variety of warblers, vireos, thrushes, woodpeckers, flycatchers, and sparrows. The route will cover various elevations, with uneven surfaces on a primitive pathway; approximately 2 miles in distance. Hikers will make a one-way trip and be picked up by van and transported to Havana's riverfront for lunch. Afterwards our guide for the afternoon will be Dr. Jim Lamer, Director of the Illinois River Biological Field Station. The group will get a quick tour of the facility and then board research boats for a trip on the river to learn about river ecology in the area. Some jumping carp will certainly show up.

Out of stock

Exploring Native American Use of Bird Motifs (Sunday) – optional

A variety of ancient Native American artifacts feature bird motifs. Rendered in a variety of media such as pottery and engraved stone, bird images are presented in both representational and abstract forms. In the central Illinois River valley, bird motifs appear more than 2,000 years ago during the Woodland Period. They become a hallmark of the Mississippian Period about 900 years ago. Beginning with a guided behind-the-scenes exploration of the Illinois State Museum-Dickson Mounds collection, participants will also explore bird motifs in Museum exhibits before embarking on a journey to three nearby archaeological sites that vary in age between 2,000 and 700-years-old. Each site will serve as a backdrop for more detailed conversations about the relationship between Native Americans and birds and provide opportunities to discover current avian residents.

Out of stock

Birding at the Double "T" State Fish & Wildlife Area (Sunday) FIELD TRIP FULL – optional

Pete Fenner and Maury Brucker are back again with us on Sunday. This time they will be leading the trip to an area that is managed for hunting and fishing, but also offers great birding. Potentials include bobolink, upland sandpiper, Virginia rail, black-necked stilt, swans, cerulean warblers, both black-bellied and american golden-plover, and a variety of other interesting things in the spring. Registration fee includes van transportation.

Out of stock

Dickson Mounds Museum Trail (Sunday) FIELD TRIP FULL – optional

Early morning birding on and around the grounds of Dickson Mounds Museum with field trip leader Randy Schietzelt. Hike through prairie and woodland habitats with plenty of edges to find migrants,including warblers (blackpoll, blue-winged, common yellowthroat, Kentucky, northern waterthrush, ovenbird, prairie, Tennessee, yellow-breasted chat), Bell’s and blue-headed vireo, sparrows (lark, vesper, white-throated), gray cheeked thrush, ruby-crowned kinglet, and pileated woodpecker..Walking will be slightly unlevel at times on primitive paths.

Out of stock

Emiquon Preserve Hoover Trail Hike (Sunday) – optional

The Hoover Trail traverses the upland area of The Emiquon Preserve on its western ridge. The hike will cover various elevations, with uneven surfaces on a primitive pathway. Approximately 2 miles in distance, the hike will be in forest along Dickson Creek and across open fields at the top of the ridge, with opportunity to see a wide variety of warblers, vireos, thrushes, woodpeckers, flycatchers, and sparrows, Hikers will make a one-way trip and be picked up by van and be transported back to their cars.

Out of stock

Emiquon Preserve (Sunday) FIELD TRIP FULL – optional

Tour with Illinois Audubon Society Executive Director, Jim Herkert at The Nature Conservancy's Emiquon Preserve and Emiquon National Fish & Wildlife Refuge. In the past, over 100 species have been recorded between April 28 and May 6 on eBird at the various Emiquon locations. Possibilities include plovers, sandpipers, willet, whimbrel; white-faced ibis, dowitchers, rails, ducks, gulls, terns, sandhill crane, herons; great egret, pipit, warblers, vireos, flycatchers, sparrows, bobolink, dickcissel, horned lark, swallows, woodpeckers, bald eagle, peregrine falcon.

Out of stock

Chautauqua NWR (Sunday) – optional

Tour in and around the Chautauqua National Fish & Wildlife Refuge guided by Andy Gilbert, Waterfowl Ecologist with the Forbes Biological Station. In past years eBirders have recorded 117 species at the various Chautauqua sites between April 28 and May 6. Species recorded include plovers, sandpipers, willet, whimbrel, Wilson’s phalarope, white-faced ibis, dowitchers, rails, ducks, gulls, terns, sandhill crane, herons; great egret, pipit, belted kingfisher, fish crow, warblers, vireos, flycatchers, sparrows, grosbeaks, bobolink, dickcissel, horned lark, swallows, woodpeckers, bald eagle, osprey, and Cooper’s hawk.

Out of stock

Available

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