Field Trips: Saturday, May 19

MORNING TRIPS

Cox Creek/Swan Creek Wetlands (HIKING)
7:00 – 11:00 am
Cost: $25/person
Meeting Location: Cox Creek Dredged Material Containment Facility at 1000 Kembo Road, Curtis Bay, MD 21226

The Cox Creek facility is located just south of the Francis Scott Key Bridge, on the western shore of the Patapsco River. Thanks to the Maryland Environmental Service and partners, 11.3 acres of tidal wetland have been created downstream of the Swan Creek Watershed. This mitigation area includes open water, low marsh and high marsh, and provides habitat for waterfowl, shorebirds, and songbirds. 196 species have been recorded here in May! Participants must sign a waiver prior to entering the facility, and all must be prepared for hiking on muddy trails with at least one shallow-water stream crossing. Restrooms available.

Swann Park to Ridgely’s Cove (HIKING/DRIVING)
8:00 – 11:00 am
Cost: $25/person
Meeting Location: Swann Park at 200 West McComas Street (near Downtown Dog Resort & Spa)

This adventure connects four of the best urban birding hotspots along the South Baltimore waterfront. We’ll begin at Swann Park, where we’ll scan the shallow water and exposed mudflats for gulls, herons and waterfowl. We’ll then drive a short distance to Harbor Hospital, where we’ll enjoy open views of the Patapsco River and Masonville Cove. From here, we’ll migrate to Middle Branch Park to scope the shoreline for sandpipers and the forested edges for songbirds. We’ll end in the shadows of M&T Bank Stadium for a short hike along the Gwynn’s Falls Trail South to add a few species hiding out in Ridgely’s Cove. With this many fantastic birding opportunities, this trip could easily tally 50 or more species. Transportation is not provided, but guides will provide detailed driving directions between sites. Restrooms available.

Gwynns Falls Leakin Park (HIKING)
8:00 – 11:00 am
Cost: $25/person
Meeting Location: Winans Meadow Trailhead

The forests of West Baltimore are brimming with birds in May. This field trip will begin at the Winans Meadow Trailhead along the Gwynns Falls Trail. Birders will hike in the mature hardwood forest, and may drive to another trailhead in the park to search for more birds. More than 100 species have been recorded here in May. Species may include Wood Thrush, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, and more than a dozen species of warbler. This trip will include up to three miles of hiking along hilly nature trails. Restrooms unavailable at this site.

AFTERNOON TRIPS

Fort McHenry (HIKING)
1:00 – 4:00 pm
Cost: $25/person
Meeting Location: Fort McHenry

“O say can you see…the Eastern Kingbird perched at 9 o’clock on that snag?” Fort McHenry is one of Baltimore’s most notable landmarks, and one the best birding hotspots in all of Maryland.196 species have been recorded here in May. Species seen during this trip may include Osprey and terns over the water, Great Blue Heron and shorebirds in the marsh, and several species of warbler, vireo and flycatcher in the trees. This hike will feature up to two miles of hiking on Fort McHenry’s pathways. Restrooms available.

Herring Run Park (HIKING)
1:00 – 4:00 pm
Cost: $25/person
Meeting Location: Hall Spring entrance near intersection of Harford Road and Argonne Drive

Masonville Cove is 70 acres of water and 54 acres of restored wetlands, nature trails, and a protected bird sanctuary on a formerly neglected parcel of land in the Middle Branch. More than 135 species have been recorded here during the month of May. Species may include shorebirds such as Dunlin and Solitary Sandpiper, Bald Eagles, and both Orchard and Baltimore Orioles. This hike will feature up to two miles of hiking on mostly flat nature trails and dirt roads. Restrooms available.

Middle Branch Paddle (PADDLING)
1:00 – 4:00 pm
Cost: $35/person for solo kayak, or per person in canoe
Meeting Location: Middle Branch Park at 3301 Waterview Avenue

Audubon is partnering with Baltimore County Recreation and Parks to host this paddling adventure on the Middle Branch of the Patapsco River. We’ll explore the shoreline for shorebirds and herons, and keep our eyes on the skies for gulls, terns, Osprey and Bald Eagles. If conditions allow, we’ll paddle to Ridgely’s Cove at the outfall of the Gwynns Falls. There is a limited availability of solo kayaks and 2-person canoes, so please select your choice when purchasing this trip. Note: this trip may be canceled due to high winds. If canceled, participants will be notified before noon on May 19, and will be offered a choice to join other Saturday afternoon field trips or be provided with a refund. Restrooms available.

 

Birding by Boat on the Patapsco River (BOAT)
5:00 – 6:00 pm
Cost: $35/person
Meeting Location: Baltimore Water Taxi dock at Locust Point (end of Hull Street)

We’ve chartered with Baltimore Water Taxi for a guided birding tour to explore the waters and shoreline of the Patapsco River, just south of the Inner Harbor. The boat will serve as a floating oberservation blind while we search for terns and Osprey in the sky, and herons, egrets and Spotted Sandpipers along the water’s edge. After the boat trip, join us for the Tally Rally just a short drive away at Nick’s Fish House at 6:00 pm! Restrooms unavailable for this trip.

Tally Rally at Nick’s Fish House
6:00 – 7:30 pm
Cost: free, food and drink available for purchase
Meeting Location: Nick’s Fish House

Audubon’s Baltimore Birding Weekend is more than a great opportunity to see unique local birds…it is also a time to meet unique local birders! Birders will enjoy great food and drink at Nick’s Fish House at 2600 Insulator Drive. See what birds have been reported on the Friday and Saturday ABBW trips, and learn about local birding hotspots from our Audubon guides. Join us to swap birding stories and add to the BBW checklist for the weekend. There is no fee for attending the tally rally, but craft beer will be available for purchase.

 

 

Please note:
Food and drink are not included in the cost for trips and tally rallies.
No cancellations are accepted after May 8, 2018.
Trips will go rain or shine. If the trip is canceled due to dangerous conditions, a full refund will be provided.
Please read our waiver and photo release form prior to registering for field trips.

PHOTO CREDITS: All bird photos courtesy of Middleton Evans. Birder photographs courtesy of Camilla Cerea.