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Ruffner Mountain Birding Report, October 9, 2016

Ruffner Wetlands - 5

White-throated Sparrow, photo by Paul H. Franklin A Report on Ruffner Mountain from Scot Duncan It was a chilly morning at the Ruffner Mountain Wetlands this Sunday (checklist below). The pre-dawn was calm, but as the sun rose the winds brought by the …

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8 Places You Shouldn’t Miss in East Alabama

Photo by Paul Franklin

This slideshow requires JavaScript. 1.     West Point Dam and surroundings: Spectacular opportunities to watch Bald Eagles and Osprey. And, of course, access to water. 2.     Cherokee Ridge Hiking Trails. Good hiking with lots of views of Lake Martin. …

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State Park Memories Make Me Smile

Inez Watts and the author at Desoto State Park in 1975

By Joe Watts, the president of the Birmingham Audubon Society and a long-time part of the Alabama Birding Trails program and of the Alabama State Park system. This op-ed originally appeared in State Parks have always mattered to me. I can’t rec …

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Fall Migration: Plan A Fun Event to an Alabama Birding Trail

Signage for the Wiregrass Birding Trail, designed by Joe Watts for the Florala Wetlands Park

Fall migration is the perfect time to plan a visit to an Alabama Birding Trail! The University of Alabama Center for Economic Development (UACED), The Alabama Tourism Department, the Alabama Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, The Birming …

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eBird and Alabama: Details About Which Counties Use It


By Anne G. Miller, President, Alabama Ornithological Society (AOS) The Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s eBird database is based on checklists of bird sightings submitted from the field by amateur birders as well as ornithologists. eBird uses these checklis …

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A Tribute to Maureen Shaffer

Maureen enjoying the Christmas Bird Count in Gulf Shores, Alabama

Maureen enjoying the Christmas Bird Count in Gulf Shores, Alabama by Anne Miller, President of Alabama Ornithological Society Note from the Alabama Birding Trails Program: Maureen offered so much to the program, from visiting sites and attending meetin …

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A Wake-up Call for Alabama’s Birders


By Anne G. Miller, President, Alabama Ornithological Society This is a wake-up call for Alabama’s birders. Most of us know how important it is for us to contribute our bird sightings to eBird, but too few of us are doing it. Sponsored by the Cornell La …

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Ruffner Report – 1 November 2015 – Black-throated Blue Warbler

White-throated Sparrow, photo by Paul H. Franklin

by R. Scot Duncan After spending about 10 hours prepping for teaching this week, I headed out to Ruffner late this afternoon, despite the gloomy weather to get some fresh (but damp) air. A thin drizzle was falling, just enough to necessitate keeping yo …

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8 Birding Trail Sites Perfect for Fall

Dauphin Island Sanctuary - 1

Fall migration is getting into full swing. There are many locations throughout Alabama that are genuine hotspots to watch as our feathered friends head south for winter. With 270 sites along all 8 of Alabama Birding Trails, what locations should you pi …

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Birds aren’t the only colorful thing you’ll see along Alabama’s Birding Trails.

Holy Ground Battlefield Park

The fall foliage can be amazing! The Alabama Birding Trails highlight the best public locations for watching birds year-round. Find sites by location or by season. Discover “secret” locations from experienced birders. Learn what birds are being reporte …

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18th Annual Great Backyard Bird Count

Click for larger image

OFF THE PORCH with Judy and Don Self Click for larger image  As we write, the 115th Audubon Christmas Bird Count (CBC) is about to get under way. Between the 14th of December and 5th of January, tens of thousands of volunteers will take to the field to …

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Autumn Birding in the Black Belt

Great egret - 1

Off The Porch with Judy and Don Self Autumn Birding at Silver Creek Park, Clarke County and Claiborne Dam Site West Park, Monroe County, Alabama (Sites 8 and 9 respectively on the Piney Woods Birding Trail) These two Corps of Engineers parks are locate …

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The Annual Hummer Invasion

by  Judy and Don Self No, not the 4-wheeled kind, the winged, 1/10th ounce, southbound kind. Fall migration of the Ruby-throated Hummingbirds is in full swing. It began back in late July, but peaks here at Almosta Farm in mid-September. But those of yo …

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Aldridge Botanical Gardens


by Paul H. Franklin Aldridge Gardens is a 30-acre former private home, lake, gardens, and grounds, conveyed to the city of Hoover in 1997 and converted to use as a botanical garden. It features an abundance of Snowflake hydrangeas – a selected variatio …

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Sanders Ferry Road

Starting as a semi-suburban two-lane road, Sanders Ferry Rd suddenly changes into open croplands on the south side and semi-open pinewoods on the north. There is excellent birding potential here, and you can reach more farm and field habitat and a sod farm by retracing Sanders Ferry, then turning right on Black Warrior Road. This loop can produce everything from Buff-breasted Sandpipers to Bachman’s Sparrows, with meadowlarks, Dickcissels, and Mississippi Kites thrown in for good measure.

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