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Field Trip: Wehle Nature Center
June 22, 2019, 7:00 am–5:00 pm
We’re excited to bring back a field trip to the Wehle Nature Center and Forever Wild tract in Bullock County—a popular spot on the Alabama Birding Trail. June is an ideal time for birding at Wehle because so many of the breeding birds are actively engaged in defending territories and raising young. A good portion of the tract is managed as open pine-grassland savanna using controlled burns, but other habitats include a pond in a forested setting and bottomland hardwoods, all of which are accessible via two hiking trail loops.
In the afternoon, Ken Hare, a birder living in Montgomery and a good friend of Birmingham Audubon, will guide us to some local birding sites in the Montgomery area before we continue to yet another favorite birding destination that evening. At day’s end, we’ll have an optional side trip to visit the alligator farm near Grady, Alabama. We normally visit this site in July, but a June visit instead might yield more young birds on the nest. We’ll have dinner around 5:15–5:30 p.m. at Red’s Little Schoolhouse, then depart for the gator farm at 6:30 p.m. If you plan on participating in this optional side trip, be warned that it can make for a very long day in the field: leaving the gator farm at sunset still leaves us with a two-hour drive back to Birmingham!
The details: Meetup is at 7 a.m. at the Alabaster McDonald’s (205 South Colonial Drive), located just off I-65 (Exit 238) on US 31. From there, we’ll carpool and caravan to the Wehle Nature Center, where John Trent will be waiting to greet us. It is about a two-hour drive, and we expect to arrive around 9–9:15 a.m. It’ll most likely be a long, hot day, so be sure to bring the usual supplies: rehydrating drinks, snacks, a full tank of gas, insect repellant, rain gear, summer attire, and a healthy dollop of sunscreen.
In the case of inclement weather, the event may be cancelled. You may contact the trip leader the morning of the event if the weather is questionable.
Accessibility: Not wheelchair accessible; fair amount of walking on established paths with some uneven terrain.
The food: Please plan to bring your own picnic lunch as there are no nearby dining options at Wehle. If you choose to do the optional trip to the alligator farm later in the day, we’ll have dinner at Red’s Little Schoolhouse before going to the farm.
The birds: Specialties at Wehle include Bachman’s Sparrows and Northern Bobwhite. We can also hope to see and hear Common Ground-Dove, Kentucky Warbler, Louisiana Waterthrush, Yellow-throated Warbler, and Brown-headed Nuthatch.
Trip leader: Greg Harber leads this trip (205-807-8055; please contact on the day of the trip only). Feel free to email us if you have questions.