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Bird watchers
The unCommon Marin Birdwatcher, seen here in its winter plumage, often gathers in flocks at the sides of local ponds around Marin County. Photo Maggie Rufo

Field Trips

Marin Audubon Field Trips are open to the public. Bring lunch, field guide, and binoculars.

Information & Questions:

(415) 299-2514

Currently scheduled upcoming field trips are listed here by date in ascending order (i.e., soonest first). For a complete list of all past and currently scheduled field trips click here.

Third Saturday Field Trip Series:  Jim White and Bob Battagin have graciously offered to lead a trip for Marin Audubon on the third Saturday of every month for 12 months. These trips are included in the list below. Click here for the complete list.

Christmas Bird Count Practice
Location: Las Gallinas Storage Ponds and Hamilton Wetlands No. 7, Birding in Marin Series
Trip Leader(s): Susan Kelly
Host: Vicky Van Meter,, 415-299-2514 or Jane Medley,, 559-760-1551
Start Date: Sunday, November 29, 2015
Start Time: 9:00 AM
End Time: 12:00 PM
Description: If you are participating in a Christmas Bird Count, thinking about participating, or just wondering what this is all about, join Susan Kelly for a hands-on training session. Susan is the organizer and compiler of the Cheep Thrills Bird Count in northern Marin. We will meet at Las Gallinas at the picnic tables by pond 1. We'll spend about 30 minutes talking about the process The talk will cover 1) how we divide the count circle into areas and cover each area with a team of 2 to 12, each with an experienced leader; 2) how we record all birds seen and/or heard on the field form (one person in each group is responsible for this and also must keep track of time spent birding while walking, driving around, riding a bike, or any other method they use); and  3) how to estimate large flocks such as robins, blackbirds, crows, geese, and ducks.  We will then walk around the pond and count the birds, recording them on the Cheep Thrills field form (each person will receive a copy). If we have time, we may go up into the trees and try counting the small birds. Please bring binoculars, water, snacks, and a pen or pencil to record the birds you count. Directions: From Highway 101 take the Smith Ranch Road exit, then east on Smith Ranch toward the McInnis Park entrance. Turn left immediately after crossing the railroad tracks, staying on Smith Ranch and go about .5 mi to the end of the road, at the Las Gallinas Ponds parking lot.

No. 8, Birding in Marin Series
Location: Bahia, Rush Creek and Rowland Ave. wetlands, Novato
Trip Leader(s): im White and Bob Battagin
Host: Vicky Van Meter,, 415-299-2514 or Jane Medley,, 559-760-1551
Start Date: Saturday, December 5, 2015
Start Time: 8:30 AM
End Time: 3:00 PM
Description: Note: this is the 1st Saturday in December, not the 3rd. (The date has been changed because of Christmas Bird Counts) Please meet at the foot (east end) of Bugeia Lane (Bahia Drive) in Novato where Marin Audubon is continuing a large restoration project. Shore birds, ducks, herons, swallows, and rails will be reaping the benefits here for years to come. After viewing the birds and the restoration area we intend to walk the trail along the edge of the mixed oak woodland. Next we plan to drive around to the end of Topaz Street to view the Horseshoe pond where some diving ducks, including a few Barrow’s Goldeneyes, like to winter. During the day we will practice some bird counting to help prepare for the upcoming Christmas Bird Count season. After lunch we will take a look at two nearby areas -- Rush Creek and the Rowland Ave wetlands. Directions:  From Hwy 101 in north Novato take the Atherton Avenue exit east about 2 miles, then turn left onto Bugeia Lane, which turns into Bahia Drive, and follow it to the end where there is some street parking. No restrooms available here.

Piper Park, Larkspur
Location: Larkspur, California
Trip Leader(s): Rich Cimino
Host: Vicky Van Meter,, 415-299-2514 or Jane Medley,, 559-760-1551
Start Date: Sunday, December 13, 2015
Start Time: 1:00 PM
End Time: 3:00 PM
Description: Join us for a bird walk in Piper Park, located in Larkspur on Doherty Rd. behind the Larkspur Police Station. This is an easy walk on a paved trail. We'll bird a mix of pine, oaks and ornamental trees, the sports field and the Corte Madera tidal marsh. The trip is in the afternoon to take advantage of the tides. Directions: From the north, take Hwy 101 and exit at Lucky Dr. which takes you on to Doherty. Coming from the south you can exit on Tamalpais Dr. which turns into Magnolia Ave., turn right on to Doherty Ave and look for the park on your left. We will meet on the green area next to the electrical car charging stations on left as you enter the Piper Park parking area.

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