Sandhill Cranes 2014
These large cranes are found during the winter months in the Sulphur Springs Valley area of Southeastern Arizona. They begin to arrive on their migration as early as September and may stay as late as March. Most of the cranes are in the Willcox area from November through February. We have been making annual treks to the area the last few years and always have a good time exploring. The cranes are incredible to watch, though I hear some of the locals are less than pleased with the noise they make and all of us visitors cluttering up the area. We have made this an annual trek depending on our work schedules and the weather.
Of course there is more to see than just the Sandhill Cranes. The area is home to several species of birds, as well as other wildlife. There are several areas to see the cranes, but Whitewater Draw has always been the best in our experience. Cochise County is a birder’s paradise! The key to it all is to get out and enjoy nature. You never know what you might find.
Wings Over WIllcox Birding and Nature Festival
“The Wings Over Willcox Birding & Nature Festival takes place during the MLK weekend with daytime and evening activities. The festival is a wonderful opportunity to see the winter migrants and southwest bird species that are found in the Sulphur Springs Valley. Our festival also provides many opportunities to explore nature in Southeast Arizona through tours for photography, geology, archeology, history, botany, agriculture, and ranching. A nature expo in the community center has educational booths, live animal displays, and a wide variety vendors with nature-related crafts and wares. Free seminars about many different topics are offered throughout the day in the community center. Willcox is situated east of Tucson, Arizona and is a scenic drive of about an hour and fifteen minutes on I-10.” Go to their site to see all of the information about the species you might see as well as when the next festival is. In 2014 the festival was held January 15tth – 19th. Make sure to take your cameras, binoculars, and spotting scopes on the fun adventure! Always be prepared for weather.
For more great info check out the following links:
Cochise County Bird Watching
Whitewater Draw Info
Sandhill Crane Info from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology
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