California Bird & Photography Tour June 27-July 4, 2019

  • June 27, Day 1
    • Arrive at Palms Springs Airport then drive to Hilton Garden Inn Palm Springs/Rancho Mirage and check in. We will do some lite birding near resort and celebrate Gallus’ birthday.
  • June 28, Day 2
    • Drive to North end of Salton Sea for Yellow-footed Gull, Gambel’s Quail, Western Grebe, California Gull, Black-capped Gnatcatcher
  • June 29, Day 3
    • We will make the 2 hour drive Angeles National Forest in search of Flammulated Owl, Pinyon Jay, Lawrence’s Goldfinch, White-headed Woodpecker, Pacific-slope Flycatcher and Northern Spotted Owl (rare breeding species)
  • June 30, Day 4
    • Morning at beautiful Joshua Tree NP and then relaxing at resort for remainder of day to be well rested for long drive next morning
  • July 1, Day 5
    • Our longest drive of the trip to Piute Ponds where we hope for LeConte’s Thrasher, Bell’s Sparrow, Greater Roadrunner, and other desert species plus any summering ducks.
    • Night in Lancaster Area
  • July 2, Day 6
    • Short drive to Bitter Creek NWR area for California Condor
    • Night near Ventura
  • July 3, Day 7
    • Boat to Santa Cruz Island (weather and space permitting) for Island Scrub-jay and pelagics from the boat.
    • Night near LAX
  • July 4, Day 8
    • Flights home


Cost is $1450.00 per person, 2 person maximum. Cost includes rental vehicle, entry fees, hotel (share occupancy), boat fare to Santa Cruz Island (If boat is unavailable at $50.00 credit will be issued), water and light snacks. Does not include airfare, food, or tips.

Author: Archaeopteryx Birding & Nature Tours

Rebecca Smith Avid Birder for last 12 years with 345 species with photos in Florida, she also is an avid photographer and has won several photo contests locally. Since 2000 during her first internship studying Dotted Skippers and Diamondback Terrapins in Cape May County, NJ, her passion for biodiversity spread from entomology and herpetology to birding. A Certified Master Naturalist, a bird bander with the Wekiva Basin Banding Station until 2017, she participates as a volunteer in Jay Watch, NABA butterfly counts and Christmas Bird Counts. She served 2 years as an Oklawaha Valley Audubon Society board member and coordinating that chapter’s field trips and is a guide for North Shore Birding Festival. She brings a diverse knowledge of all of Florida’s fauna, is an amazing photographer, and loves insects, especially beetles. Rebecca brings a passion for all things nature and her love of birds, butterflies, and insects is contagious to all those who go out with her. With her long resume of jobs in biology studying everything from Clapper Rail to Red-cockaded Woodpecker and you won’t find anyone more knowledgeable or passionate about what she does. Florida Bird List-345 with photos Florida Butterfly List-101 Bird Life List-865 Gallus Quigley Began birding at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary in PA watching raptors in 8th grade which began his love of hawks. That soon changed after receiving a Golden’s Field Guide that he paged through till he came across the wood-warblers and saw the Prothonotary Warbler which launched him into the world of birding. Since then he has been the hawk counter at Bake Oven Knob in PA, during his time here he was published in American Hawkwatcher for a paper on Migrating Cooper’s and Sharp-shinned Hawks and in conjunction with Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, and Mountclair in NJ for NJAS. Arriving in Florida in May 2005 to work for Dr. Reed Noss of UCF doing Radio Telemetry and banding of the critically endangered Florida Grasshopper Sparrow. This eventually lead to his current job with Lake County Office of Parks & Trails where he performs quarterly bird & butterfly surveys on six conservation properties. Over his time with with Lake County he was on Birding Adventures with James Currie, Keynote Speaker for 2015 Wings & Wildflowers Festival, as well as a guide and speaker each of the five years the festival was in existence. Orlando Sentinel Article Birding Adventures Episode Birdwatcher’s Digest Article-An Englishman in Florida Birdwatching Magazine Article ABA Blog Article Birding the Byway Wings & Wildflowers Festival Interview In his spare time he is the eBird reviewer for Lake and Sumter Counties, Compiler for Zellwood-Mt. Dora (Lake Apopka) CBC, eBird Hotspot Reviewer for Florida, has assisted with Jay Watch, beta tested eBird and Birdseye apps for Android, and was Lake County Coordinator for Florida BBA 2011-2016. He also is a trip leader for North Shore Birding Festival, Festival of Flight & Flowers and Palm Coast’s Birds of a Feather Fest. Gallus also participates in numerous Christmas Bird Counts and often accompanies Beck on NABA Butterfly Surveys. With this background Gallus brings the details, with quality eBird checklists made at every stop and a knowledge of the when and where to find birds. His background also means he has a vast knowledge of local ecosystems and thank to Rebecca is becoming a butterfly enthusiast and better photographer. Florida Bird List-436 Florida Butterfly List-86 Big Year-Florida 359 in 2008 (3rd Highest Total), Lake County 243 in 2015 (Record) Bird Life List-1331

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