Wake County Winter Hotspots

Raleigh, NC, USA

VB
76 reviews
Jan 27, 2023
Group size: 3 - 10
Wake County Winter Hotspots
Raleigh, NC, USA

76 reviews

$NaN
Jan 27, 2023
Group size: 3 - 10

About this trip

A tour of local birding hotspots around the Raleigh area. Some of these are larger, well-known locations but others-- not so much! We will visit a variety of habitat from ponds and marsh to open fields as well as mixed woodland. The terrain will be fairly flat but we will do a good bit of walking so be sure to wear comfortable footwear.


Our day will begin at Crabtree Park.  First, we will walk some of the park trails in search of a mix of wet woodland species such as Winter Wren, Hairy Woodpecker, Swamp Sparrow and hopefully Brown Creeper. Keeping an eye to the sky, we could very well spot a Bald Eagle or two which not only hunt here regularly year round but have attempted to nest more than once. Next we will explore the lake for waterbirds. This good-sized impounded section of Crabtree Creek can hold an array of wintering waterfowl such as Wood Ducks, Green-winged Teal, Ruddy Ducks, and Ring-necked Ducks. Sometimes a Great Egret can be found in addition to the numerous Great Blue Herons that forage in the shallows.


We will then make our way south to the open habitat associated with NC State’s agricultural experimental farming units adjacent to Lake Wheeler. Scanning the fields the group should get views of Eastern Bluebirds, Horned Larks, Savannah Sparrows and hopefully Loggerhead Shrike. Also a Peregrine Falcon has been observed in this area for a number of winters. We will be sure to check the significant flock of Canada Geese that linger around the farm ponds here-- just in case another species of goose such as a Cackling or Greater White-fronted is mixed in.  If there is time, we’ll swing by the nearby historic Yates Mill Pond in search of more waterfowl and marsh species such as Common Yellowthroat, Fox Sparrow and maybe some Rusty Blackbirds.

The group will then work south and west to Harris Lake which is adjacent to the nuclear plant not far off of US Route 1. Among other things, gull numbers should be high here. This will give us the opportunity to spend some time studying an assortment of Ring-billed and Bonaparte’s Gulls of different ages. With luck we should be able to tease out a few Herring Gulls and maybe a Black-backed or two. 

And last but not least, we hope to work in a stop to view a winter hummingbird at a local feeder.


What’s included

  • 1 birding guide
  • lunch
  • transportation

Your Organizer


VB
Ventures Birding Tours
76 reviews
Small travel company based in Asheville, NC, specializing in birding & nature tours both locally & worldwide.

Reviews

Kevin was a super guide!
By Sandy T for Fall Warbler Workshop 2 - 2022 on 08 Oct, 2022
Aaron was a great guide! Due to weather (wind), he switched our location to Warren-Wilson Owen Park which was a fabulous hotspot for Warblers. We ended up with 67 species, two FOS for me. Look forward to more trips.
By Donna W for Ridge Junction 4 on 02 Oct, 2022
We had a wonderful weekend. Kevin Burke is a fantastic guide - enthusiastic, knowledgeable, aware of the skill levels of the birders so that everyone learns something. In a 4 day weekend (one afternoon, one morning, two full days) we saw 83 species, 20 different warblers. We went to a variety of environments (lakes, the Blue Ridge Parkway, Jackson Park in Hendersonville), each with different migrant bird populations. The Holiday Inn was fine (as expected), and we all went out for meals together that were quite good, especially the Corner Kitchen. Very highly recommended! We’ve done both Spring and Fall Ventures Birding Warbler Weekends. Spring has more colorful birds that are easier to see (fewer leaves), while Fall has more birds all together. Both are fun.
By Ross M for Warbler Weekend Fall 2022 on 21 Sep, 2022
This trip was wonderful. It covered a large number of bird habitats throughout the entire state of Oregon. Our guides were very well organized and everything went very smoothly although there was always room to be flexible. Our accommodations were very good. Both guides were very very knowledge and friendly, helpful, and considerate. In all, a memorable birding trip with over 200 species viewed.
By Kim H for Oregon - Mountains, Coasts and Deserts 2022 on 19 Sep, 2022
This was a delightful experience. The views from the peak of the parkway were outstanding, the warblers were darting through on the fall migration, and the forested lovely trails from the Pisgah Inn to the overlook parking lot made for a perfect morning.
By Kathleen W for Buck Spring Gap on 16 Sep, 2022
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