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An extensive array of geese and migratory birds fill the sky and waterways during the Snow Goose Festival of the Pacific Flyway in January 2018. The event celebrates 20 years showing off its avian bounty Jan. 23.

Snow Goose Festival offers birding experience

Avian experts “show and tell” at various locations during field trips at the Snow Goose Festival 2018. Photos by Mari Erin Roth

The 20th annual Snow Goose Festival of the Pacific Flyway has opened registration for the 2019 avian extravaganza that begins Wednesday, Jan. 23, in Chico.

Quincy active birder and raptor enthusiast Colin Dillingham will share some of his 32 years of experience when he presents “Ranges, Movements, and Migration of Peregrine falcons in Plumas County” on Sunday, Jan. 27, at 1:30 p.m., as part of the festival.

Many of the activities start by meeting at the Chico Masonic Family Center. The collection of free and fee presentations is extensive and include offerings of field trip, workshop, banquet, art show, youth activities and special exhibitors. Scenic and informational tours cover a wide area range east and west from Sacramento to Red Bluff.

Some of the hot spot locations include Black Butte Lake, Gray Lodge Wildlife Area, Lake Oroville, Bidwell Park, Llano Seco Rancho, Sutter Buttes, Colusa National Wildlife Refuge, Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserve and the Northern Sacramento River Valley.

The action starts Wednesday, Jan. 23, at 7 a.m., the early bird gets the worm, and doesn’t stop until after dark Sunday, Jan. 27. Registration and information is available at snowgoosefestival.org.

David Wimpfheimer of Point Reyes is the keynote speaker at the Saturday, Jan. 26, 5:30 p.m. “Gathering of Wings” banquet. He will present, “Point Reyes and the Farallon Islands: A Mecca for Birds and Birders.” Sounds like 2019 could be a very “Big Year.”

Snow geese are not the only lovelies on display at the Grey Lodge Wildlife Area during a festival tour 2018.

Some of the events are filling quickly such as the Pontoon boat tour on Lake Oroville and Eagle Roost Safari’s. Specialty workshops include Wildlife Photography and painting classes featuring avian topics. Some walking tours will travel through areas very recently burned in the Camp Fire.

The Snow Goose Festival Wildlife Art Exhibit opens Thursday, Jan. 24, at the Museum of Northern California Art, 900 Esplanade in Chico. There is an opening reception Friday, Jan. 25 from 5 to 8 p.m. The art exhibit will remain on display until Sunday, Feb. 10. Deadline for artist submissions is Friday, Jan. 4 at 5 p.m.

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