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Field Trip: Shoal Creek Park and Ebenezer Swamp


Birding at Shoal Creek Park.

May 13, 2023 , 7:00 am 12:00 pm

Pre-registration is required by 12 p.m. CDT on Friday, May 12th.

Participants must complete the mandatory online waiver. Please do not request registration for others when submitting your request.

Explore this remarkably diverse habitat just a short drive south of Birmingham. Our first stop will be at Shoal Creek Park consisting of 167 acres of largely open lands and wooded margins with Shoal Creek running through the property. There are several bridges, making crossing the creek easy and safe, and providing nice views of the watershed. Some trails are wide and even, making walking easy. There are a few narrow trails, with somewhat challenging stream crossings, but these are easy to manage for the inclined and easy to avoid for those looking for an easier walk.

Our second stop will be at nearby Ebenezer Swamp Ecological Preserve, a Tupelo gum swamp located near Montevallo on Spring Creek. Handicap-accessible boardwalks through the swamp provide the birder with intimate views of the diverse plant and bird life of this upland hardwood swamp. The unpaved trail leading to the boardwalk passes through open fields and hardwood and pine thickets. Rich with warblers, woodpeckers, long-legged waders, and woodland songbirds, the swamp will be a bit cooler for a stroll later in the morning once it’s getting hot.

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 caravan to Shoal Creek and arrive between 7:30–7:45 a.m. for those who want to meet us there. 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.

As always, remember to bring plenty of water and snacks, a full tank of gas, insect repellent, rain gear, sunblock, and seasonally appropriate attire.

Registration: To register, click on the button above. If you’re new to our online system and don’t yet have a username and password, simply click the “X” on the pop up and fill out the basic form. If you do have a login, please use it as this helps us tremendously on our end! You should receive an automated email upon registering.

Accessibility: Both locations are semi-accessible. There is dirt/thick grass then a 3″ step to get on the boardwalk at Ebenezer Swamp. Shoal Creek has packed dirt paths with some potential for moderate inclines.

Prothonotary warbler at Ebenezer Swamp by Matt Hunter.

Questions about accessibility? Email us for more information about how we can meet your needs.

The food: Bring any snacks and drinks you might want. We should be done by lunchtime.

The birds: We’ll be looking for spring migrants, including warblers, as well as many resident songbirds and raptors. Check out the eBird list for Ebenezer Swamp here and Shoal Creek Park here.

Trip leaders: Jonah Cohen (860-202-9259) and Susan Barrow (205-253-8667) will lead this trip. Please contact on the day of the field trip only.

Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Through more than seventy-five years of conservation work in one of our nation’s most ecologically rich states, Alabama Audubon has seen firsthand how diversity strengthens natural communities. We believe that the same principle applies to human communities, which is why our organization is committed to providing equitable opportunities for all Alabamians to learn about and enjoy wild birds, their habitats, and the natural world. One of the best ways to support that belief is by valuing and actively seeking to strengthen diversity among our staff, our board, and our membership. To that end, Alabama Audubon welcomes the whole of our community to our work, and strives to make our programs, classes, and events open and accessible to all.