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San Francisco Bay Flyway Festival 2015

Skaggs Tour

For a complete schedule of the San Francisco Bay Flyway Festival, go to the Flyway Festival web site.

  • Friday, February 13

    Skaggs Island Raptor Tours
    9:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. with Murray Berner
    11:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. with Tim Behr from Golden Gate Raptor Observatory
    Skaggs Island is one of the best places to see raptors in the Greater San Francisco Bay Area. Take a guided raptor tour through this normally closed area. It is mostly an auto tour with a couple of short walks on levees. Upon arrival of all field trip participants, before entry onto the island, we will consolidate the auto caravan into as few vehicles as possible. The gate is locked behind us. No early departures. Bring binoculars, a scope if you have one, and water and snacks. Dress for the weather. Heavy rain cancels.

    Where to Meet
    Carpools are required! From Vallejo, Napa and East Bay:gather at the Wildlife Expo entrance to Building 253 on Mare Island one-half hour before outing time to form carpools. From Marin and Sonoma: meet at the Skaggs Island gate to further form carpools.

    Directions: From Marin and Sonoma Counties: travel eastbound on Highway 37 five miles beyond the light at Sears Point/Sonoma Raceway. Turn left onto Skaggs Island Road. Meet your guide just inside the gate.

    There will be one restroom stop. Because of gates, participants must stay for the entire tour. 

  • Saturday, February 14

    Cullinan Ranch Levee Eco-Walk with Wetland Biologist Francesca Demgen
    10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m.
    Join wetland biologist Francesca Demgen, President of Friends of San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge, for a walk on the levee between two important north bay habitats: shallow, managed pond and the newly restored 1,200-acre tidal wetland. Potential to see hundreds of shorebirds and ducks foraging and resting in Pond 1 and ducks and geese on the tidal wetland. Learn how pickleweed and ducks can both “drink” salt water and about the thousands of acres of wetland restoration happening between the Napa and Petaluma Rivers.

    Where to Meet
    Meet at the corner of Railroad Ave. and Connolly St. one block from the Flyway Festival Wildlife Expo Hall to form carpools or use the Refuge van described below.

    Directions: To drive from the Flyway Festival, go north on Railroad Ave. to Hwy 37. Turn left over the overpass and follow directions from Vallejo. From Vallejo, Solano and Contra Costa Counties: take Hwy 37 West 3.4 miles past the Mare Island exit ramp to the Cullinan Ranch Unit parking lot and trailhead. From Marin and Sonoma Counties: take Hwy 37 east approximately 9 miles past the Hwy 121 junction to the Mare Island exit. Veer left on the exit under the overpass and then turn right onto the overpass. Turn right to get onto Hwy 37 West. The parking lot and trailhead is approximately 3.4 miles from the Mare Island ramp. Since the parking lot is small, a Refuge van leaves Building 253, the Wildlife Expo Saturday, Feb 14 9:45 a.m. and pick up at 11:00 a.m.

    Skaggs Island Raptor Tours
    9:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. with Murray Berner
    11:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. with Tim Behr from Golden Gate Raptor Observatory
    See Description for February 13

    Take Pictures with Puddles, the National Wildlife Refuge System Mascot
    11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
    At the Wildlife Expo at Building 253, 575 Connolly St., Mare Island

  • Sunday, February 15

    Skaggs Island Raptor Tours
    11:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. with Tim Behr from Golden Gate Raptor Observatory 
    See Description for February 13

    Jr. Refuge Ranger
    1:00 p.m., 2:00 p.m., 3:00 p.m.

    Discover what it takes to become a Junior Refuge Ranger. We will learn about some of the special plants and animals that live on wildlife refuges. Participate in some fun hands-on activities and find out how you can help our local wildlife refuges. All ages welcome. Program is 30 minutes.

    San Francisco Bay Flyway Festival Family and Wildlife Expo
    Building 253, 575 Connolly St.
    Mare Island, Vallejo

    Shorebirds and Waterfowl Walk at Sears Point 
    1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.

    Join Sonoma Land Trust at Sears Point Ranch for a walk with Certified California Naturalist Dave Barry along the old and new levees surrounding the 1,000-acre tidal marsh restoration project. Look at the shorebirds and waterfowl adorning the newly-created wetlands. Bring your binoculars and spotting scopes! Meet at the Baylands Center at 2100 Hwy 37, just east of the Lakeville Hwy intersection. Pre-register at

    Meet at the Baylands Center at 2100 Hwy 37, just east of the Lakeville Hwy intersection.

    Directions: From Napa/Sonoma: travel from Hwy 12/121 through light at Sears Point to light at Lakeville Hwy. Make U-turn at light. Refuge is .25 miles on right. From Vallejo: travel west on Hwy 37 to Lakeville Hwy light. Follow directions above. From Marin: travel eastbound on Hwy 37, Refuge is .25 miles on right after Lakeville Hwy light. Turn right into the driveway of an old dairy farm–no refuge signs.

Page Photo Credits — Kathleen Brubaker
Last Updated: Feb 10, 2015
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