Phinizy Birding Festival

Cost for the weekend: $40 ($30 for Friends of Phinizy)



Meet and Greet:  4:00 – 7:30 p.m.

Join us as we share a social time together with hors d’oeuvres and a talk by our evening speaker, Mark Pavlosky.


7:30 – 11:00   Birding Walks or Photography Workshop
11:30 – 12:30 Boxed Lunch with discussion on birds that were seen
12:30 – 2:00  Workshops
2:30 – 6:00 Bird Walks


7:30 – 11:30 Morning Session: Birding Walks or Topical Lecture

Special hotel booking rates are available at the Holiday Inn Express Augusta Downtown.


Workshops & Field Trips:

Workshops and field trips are subject to change based on the number of individuals signed up for a workshop or specific walk.  

Friday Evening Meet & Greet
Friday Evening Meet & Greet  and talk with Mark Pavlosky, Wildlife Consultant with MPJ Wildlife Consulting LLC.  Mark will talk about the ecology and management of the Red-cockaded woodpecker, an endangered species found in South Carolina, and ongoing recovery efforts and efforts currently being made to re-establish Red-cockaded woodpeckers in Hitchcock Woods.  Mark’s will talk from 5:30 – 6:30.  

Workshop Descriptions:

Digi-scoping Workshop Come learn the tips and tricks of taking photos in the field using high-magnification fieldscopes. – Led by Calvin Zippler

Nature Printing Workshop For this workshop learn how to use items from nature to create works of art! Each participant will design their own notecard. Supplies provided. – Led by John Doughty

Dragonfly ID Workshop Come learn some of the key features for quick field identification of some of our most common dragonflies. – Led by Lois Stacey

Pollinator Workshop Come explore the fascinating world of organisms that we call pollinators, and gain some information on how you can help out these essential little inhabitants. – Led by Jen McGruter

Bird Journaling Workshop Explore the joy of capturing the beauty of nature with your own hand. Learn steps for visually enhancing your journaling abilities. If you currently keep a journal, be sure to bring it along! – Led by Priscilla Hollingsworth


Field Trip Descriptions

Phinizy Loop Trail:   This 2.5 mile walking loop covers most of the habitats at Phinizy Swamp Nature Park. It starts in the front parking lot with a good chance for Painted Buntings. The Beaver Dam Trail takes us to the woods for a chance to hear and see Vireos, Warblers, Tanagers, Woodpeckers, Chickadees and Titmice. Hiking through the Constructed Wetlands provides a good look at waders, swimmers as well as birds of prey and small birds that like grassy areas like Buntings. A walk across the Floodplain Boardwalk always offers a surprise of some kind.

Habitat Walk:  The easiest way to find the bird you are looking for is to go to their habitat. This walk will focus on some of the many different habitats found at Phinizy Swamp Nature Park and the birds associated with them. We will focus on habitats for Buntings, Vireos, Tanagers and Chats as well as Egrets, Herons, Kites, Rails and all birds in between.

Airport Fence Line:  An early morning walk down the airport fence line is known to produce some interesting birds. The hike starts on the Butler Creek Trail to cover a wooded habitat before hitting the fenced line. Grasshopper Sparrow, Indigo Bunting, Painted Bunting, Summer Tanager, Blue Grosbeak, Eastern Phoebe, Eastern Kingbird and Eastern Meadowlark will be some of the many target birds.

Lover’s Lane Driving Tour:   This tour starts in the front parking area at Phinizy Swamp Nature Park. We will then carpool to the other side of the swamp (the Levee and Lover’s Lane). Passing the chemical plants on Columbia Nitrate Road often produces Loggerhead Shrike, Eastern Bluebird and Killdeer. Continuing down the road to the fields can produce Bobolink, Buntings, and Vireos. The wooded drive and passing wetlands is good for Warblers, Woodpeckers, Birds of Prey, Waders and many other species.

Basic Field Ornithology:   This walk will focus on the basics – where to look, behavior, what to listen for, and how to tell others where you see the bird. This walk will include the Floodplain Boardwalk, Rain Garden, front parking lot and hike down the road to campus. Our bird focus will be Buntings, Tanagers, Vireos, Orioles, Egrets, Herons, Flycatchers, Birds of Prey and anything else that flies by.

Silver Bluff Audubon Center and Sanctuary:  This tour starts in the front parking area at Phinizy Swamp Nature Park. We will then carpool to Silver Bluff a 3,154 acre sanctuary on the Savannah River. A walk through the Longleaf / Wiregrass community is good for producing Bachman Sparrow, Eastern Towhee, Vireos, Buntings, Prairie Warblers, Pine Warblers, Nuthatch, Red-headed Woodpecker, and much more. The site also includes bottomland hardwood, fields, and man-made ponds. Always a great walk!