Florida Keys Birding & Wildlife Festival
Explore the Florida Keys in late September and take advantage of a local event as well. The following article is an excerpt from Visit Florida for those naturalists in the area during this time:
See all of the Florida Keys – and do a lot of birding and wildlife watching, too – at the upcoming Florida Keys Birding and Wildlife Festival, which opens on Sept. 25 and runs until Sept. 30. While trips will be held from Key Largo all the way down to Dry Tortugas National Park, the main festival hub is centrally located at Curry Hammock State Park at MM 56.2 in Marathon.
Sign up for one or more of a well-rounded lineup of guided field trips and workshops, ranging from walks at the National Key Deer Refuge on Big Pine Key to an incredible excursion down to Dry Tortugas National Park, located 70 miles west of Key West. If raptors are your thing, take part in the Florida Keys Hawkwatch program, where you'll help to monitor hawks, ospreys, eagles, falcons and other birds.
The keynote speaker for the event is Bill Thompson III, editor of Bird Watcher's Digest and author of several birding guidebooks, including "The Young Birder's Guide to Birds of Eastern North America." Thompson speaks on Thursday, Sept. 27 at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park and Friday, Sept. 28 at the Marathon Garden Club.
Make sure to register early, as events will reach capacity. Get the full event list and festival schedule by visiting www.keysbirdingfest.org, and make sure to stop by the event's Facebook page (give it a like!) at www.facebook.com/Keysbirdingfest. Have fun birding in the Florida Keys!