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ONLINE: Virtual Black Belt Field Trip: Greensboro Area Catfish Ponds


Wood storks by Greg Harber

July 27, 2020 , 6:00 pm 7:00 pm

Pre-registration is required by 12 p.m. CDT Monday, July 27th, and space is limited.

More info and registration coming soon!

In response to physical distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, we are offering free online courses and events as a public service to help folks continue to learn about the birds they love! While these will initially be offered for free, please support our work if you are able and make a tax-deductible donation at alaudubon.org/give. Even though the state has reopened, it’s important to stay safe during this pandemic. See our full COVID-19 statement here.

Take a a virtual field trip to Alabama’s Black Belt region and learn where you can take your own field trip in the coming weeks. The second of two great summer virtual trips exploring Alabama’s Black Belt takes us to a broad stretch of coastal plain between the Black Warrior and Alabama Rivers. Participants on both trips regularly report Mississippi and swallow-tailed kiteswood storks, and scissor-tailed flycatchers, as well as numerous other southern summer specialities—each one a bird worth traveling for.

This trip in particular focuses on the “catfish country” of Hale and Perry Counties, an extensive system of agricultural ponds that draw in wading birds and a sporadic population of post-breeding wood storks. A late afternoon stop at the Marion Fish Hatchery will also provide plenty of opportunities to see egrets and herons (including little blues) returning to their roosts, backlit by a western summer sun. 

Where and when do we meet? This online event meets on Monday, July 27th, from 6–7 p.m. CDT. It will be an hour-long virtual field trip online with some time at the end for questions. Click on the registration link above to sign up, and you’ll receive the instructions on how to join the meeting via a confirmation email.* 

*Please note, you will receive a separate email with the Zoom meeting instructions before the class (likely the business day before). You’ll need the meeting ID and password from this email to join the meeting. In the event the link does not work for you, you may need to go to the Zoom website and manually enter the meeting ID and password.

Registration: Class size is limited to 100. 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.

Please only register if you intend to take the online course. We’ve had a lot of people reach out after these courses fill up who want to take them, and we want to ensure everyone has a spot that wants one! Also, please double check your email and make sure it’s a valid email address prior to completing your registration. We’ve had several kick-backs when sending the Zoom meeting instructions out to registrants, and you won’t be able to join the meeting without this information. Thanks!

The birds: This trip would typically search for swallow-tailed and Mississippi kites, painted buntings, great egrets, and wood storks. Also a scattering of water birds, including lesser scaup, American coot, pied-billed grebe, and ruddy duck.

Questions? Email the Outreach & Communications Director.


FAQ’s:

Will this be recorded, and will I have the ability to view them later? Unfortunately, we do not have the ability to record our online courses. Please check out our other upcoming online courses here.

Is there a waiting list? We do not have waiting lists for our online courses at this time. 

The link doesn’t appear to be working. You may need to go to the Zoom website (https://zoom.us) and manually enter the meeting ID and password. Also, wait until just a couple of minutes before the meeting is supposed to begin to try to enter the meeting. It will not work if you try to join the meeting half an hour before it’s scheduled to begin, for instance.

I did not receive the email with the Zoom meeting instructions. Please double-check the email address you enter when registering for the course as that is where the instructions will be sent (typically the afternoon before). You may need to add us to your email provider’s safe sender list in the event it goes to spam. Also, please contact us by the morning of the event if possible as generally you should have received the email the afternoon before the course offering so that we have time to address your issue.