Home
Field Notes
 
U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service
Field Notes Entry   
Sixth Annual Balcones Songbird Festival a Success
Southwest Region, May 1, 2006
Print Friendly Version
Star Shine party at Flat Creek Estate
Cathy Harrington, April 28, 2006
Kick off party for Balcones Songbird Festival at Flat Creek Estate with the Austin Classical Guitar Society quartet, Clive Luke, John Garica, Jay Clement, and Darlene Gamble. Z Tejas Chef, Jack Gilmore, prepared an incredible array of tantalizing food complements that looked every bit as wonderful as they tasted!
Star Shine party at Flat Creek Estate Cathy Harrington, April 28, 2006 Kick off party for Balcones Songbird Festival at Flat Creek Estate with the Austin Classical Guitar Society quartet, Clive Luke, John Garica, Jay Clement, and Darlene Gamble. Z Tejas Chef, Jack Gilmore, prepared an incredible array of tantalizing food complements that looked every bit as wonderful as they tasted! - Photo Credit: n/a
How big is a bird?

Cathy Harrington, April 30, 2006, Balcones Songbird Festival
Children's Activities on Sunday
How big is a bird? Cathy Harrington, April 30, 2006, Balcones Songbird Festival Children's Activities on Sunday - Photo Credit: n/a
Last Chance Forever Flies

Cathy Harrington, April 30, 2006 Balcones Songbird Festival
Last Chance Forever Program for rehabilitated raptors.  One of the family oriented programs offered free to the public.
Last Chance Forever Flies Cathy Harrington, April 30, 2006 Balcones Songbird Festival Last Chance Forever Program for rehabilitated raptors. One of the family oriented programs offered free to the public. - Photo Credit: n/a
Bird House Building
Cathy Harrington, April 30, 2006 Balcones Songbird Festival
One of the children's activities sponsored by Travis Audubon Society and the Master Naturalists.
Bird House Building Cathy Harrington, April 30, 2006 Balcones Songbird Festival One of the children's activities sponsored by Travis Audubon Society and the Master Naturalists. - Photo Credit: n/a
Looking for rare and endangered birds at Balcones

Cathy Harrington, April 29, 2006 Balcones Songbird Festival
Bill Reiner, tour guide
Looking for rare and endangered birds at Balcones Cathy Harrington, April 29, 2006 Balcones Songbird Festival Bill Reiner, tour guide - Photo Credit: n/a
Spider walk

Cathy Harrington, April 30, 2006 Balcones Songbird Festival
Spider Walk with Joe Lapp. One of the free children's activies at the Festival
Spider walk Cathy Harrington, April 30, 2006 Balcones Songbird Festival Spider Walk with Joe Lapp. One of the free children's activies at the Festival - Photo Credit: n/a

BALCONES SONGBIRD FESTIVAL --Best one Ever!

 

After 5 years of being held in Lago Vista, the Texas Songbird Festival was finally headquartered at Balcones Canyonlands National Wildlife Refuge and renamed the Balcones Songbird Festival.  The Refuge is deeply grateful to the Lago Vista Chamber of Commerce and the City of Lago Vista for hosting the previous Festivals and donating so much time and hardwork.

 

  Approximately 450 people attended the 4-day festival, from April 28-May 1.  The first event on Friday evening was the Wine and Star Shine at Flat Creek Estate next to the Refuge where 120 people came to kick off the festival with great food and a little star watching.  The weather did not cooperate but the Austin Astronomer, Jeff Phillips, gave a planetarium type presentation on the stars of the summer sky, which was very impressive. 

 

Tours to view the Black-capped Vireo and the Golden-cheeked Warbler were conducted on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday mornings.  This was the first year that the guided tours were sold out.  Other events with tpur guides included Sounds of the Night and tours of the habitats and fauna of the Texas Hill Country.  At least 112 bird species were seen as well as 15 species of reptiles and amphibians, 18 species of butterflies as well as numerous wildflowers and other interesting plants.  This was the first year all the space-limited events were sold out.  Marjorie Adams, Austin environmentalist sold and autographed her book, Bird-Witched, at the Travis Audubon booth,

 

Several special programs focusing on families with children were presented.  These included birdhouse building, seed ball making, and numerous other activities to keep small hands busy while they waited for the other events to start.  These included Life of a Pond with Kathy McCormack, a spider walk with Joe Lapp and a free flying raptor program by Last Chance Forever.  Last Chance Forever is a non-profit organization dedicated to the rehabilitation and release of injured and orphaned birds of prey.  This free program held approximately 225 parents and children spellbound.  Other events including a tour of local backyard habitats and a program at Little Bend Native Plant Nursery were held in Lago Vista as part of the Festival.

 

The Lago Vista Independent School District allowed their students to participate in a poster contest.  Winners were selected and all the artwork was displayed at the Festival.

 

A chuck wagon BBQ was held at the Refuge’s Flying X Ranch where visitors were treated to a traditional Texas style BBQ.  Charlene Vohs, The North Shore Heritage and Cultural Society,  gave a presentation of "Ranches to Refuge" honoring the local ranchers contribution by those who had recognized the beauty and value of what they owned and wanted to preserve it for future generations through the refuge.

 

This was one of the largest events hosted by the Refuge and involved the largest number of partners.  Friends of Balcones, Travis Audubon Society and numerous other groups helped with money, vehicles, people, or supplies.  This list included several Refuges, Atwater’s Prairie Chicken NWR, Laguna Atascoa, and Inks Dam NFH.  A list of other partners, cooperators, and sponsors is attached.


Contact Info: Martin Valdez, 505-248-6599, martin_valdez@fws.gov



Send to:
From:

Notes:
Find a Field Notes Entry

Search by keyword

Search by State




Search by Region


US Fish and Wildlife Service footer