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Thank you for your interest in the Wings Over Willcox Birding and Nature Festival.

Seminar Information

Seminars are scheduled throughout the festival weekend and are free to attend.  Registration is not required to attend the seminars. The seminars are free and open to the public. All the seminars are held at the Willcox Community Center at 312 West Stewart Street.  The seminars are presented in either the Fireplace Room or the Dining Room.  To avoid interruptions during speaker presentations, please arrive 10 minutes before the seminar start time.

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Calendar View

Thursday    Friday    Saturday    Sunday     All

T-Shirts              Seminars
Friday 01/13/23
NEW!! 201 The Decline of Northern Mexican and Narrow-headed Gartersnakes: Can they be recovered?  
Meet at WCC:   10:50 AM  Return:   12:00 PM   

Jeff Servoss, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's lead biologist for the northern Mexican and narrow-headed gartersnake, will discuss the long-term trajectory of these gartersnakes over time including the major reasons for population declines and Federal listing, their relevance to the crisis facing Southwestern aquatic ecosystems in general, and what will be required to reverse declines and preserve Arizona's native, aquatic natural heritage.

Seminar Speaker: Jeff Servoss  

202 Beginning Birdwatching  
Meet at WCC:   1:20 PM  Return:   2:30 PM   

Eric Moore, owner of Jay's Bird Barn in Prescott, will provide tips for those just beginning the fascinating journey into birding. These will include selecting the right pair of binoculars and who to set them for your vision; basic identification marks such as size, overall feather colors, location/habitat, bill and foot color, vocalizations and more. 

Seminar Speaker: Eric Moore, Jay's Bird Barn  

203 Sandhill Cranes 101  
Meet at WCC:   2:20 PM  Return:   3:15 PM   

Learn more about the birds that started our birding festival. Everything you wanted to know about the oldest bird (going back over 65 million years) and one of Arizona's most magnificent species.

Seminar Speaker: Steve Marlatt  

204 Adventures in Birding  
Meet at WCC:   3:20 PM  Return:   4:40 PM   

Whether we call it “birdwatching” or “birding,” this pastime is more than checking off a bird on your life list, it is a unique and therapeutic way to connect with nature and people. We’ll talk about the birding adventures that await us just a step from our front doors and learn the best ways to connect with the local birds and birding communities. 

Seminar Speaker: Luke Safford  

Saturday 01/14/23
NEW!! 205 Recent History of Borderlands Jaguars  
Meet at WCC:   9:50 AM  Return:   11:00 AM   

Southeast Arizona and southwest New Mexico are the only locations in the United States where jaguars have been sighted in the past 20 years. In late 2016, one jaguar was in the Huachuca Mountains and the other in the Dos Cabezas. Earlier that year a video surfaced of a third jaguar in the Santa Rita Mountains. Although the Huachucas’ jaguar came to a bad end in Mexico, its return there was biologically significant. Meantime, the Dos Cabezas jaguar has persisted south of Willcox. This presentation will examine how the presence of these endangered species in the region pose unique challenges for wildlife and land managers, and how they are even more popular among the general public trail camera technology.  

Seminar Speaker: Mark Hart  

206 The Exciting Night Life of Bats!  
Meet at WCC:   11:20 AM  Return:   12:30 PM   

Karen has studied bats for more than 35 years. Learn about this exciting and unique nocturnal mammal and how it is so successful as a predator and pollinator. There are more than 1,100 species of bats that occur worldwide. Arizona has 28 species of bats. Bats are an important part of our ecosystems and deserve our respect and admiration. Echolocation allows a bat to fly in total darkness to locate, chase, and capture flying insects. Bridges and other human structures are important roost habitat for many species of bats. Nectar bats visit and pollinate columnar cactus and succulents in our area. Join us for an interesting and exciting lecture on bats!

Seminar Speaker: Karen Krebbs  

207 Secrets of the Owls and Night BIrds  
Meet at WCC:   12:50 PM  Return:   2:00 PM   

Flying silently like ghosts, owls go about their nightly errands under cover of darkness, usually unseen by us. Even so, they are instantly recognizable with their large heads and big eyes. Why do owls have such big heads?  No other bird does. Owls are designed around their adaptations to a nocturnal lifestyle. Yet these adaptations also present problems. Nature evolves ingenious solutions to these problems and the true story is far more intriguing than the many myths that surround owls.  Join Pinau Merlin for an engaging and fascinating look into the lifestyles and adaptive strategies of these amazing raptors of the night.

Seminar Speaker: Pinau Merlin  

NEW!! 208 The Art of Falconry  
Meet at WCC:   1:50 PM  Return:   3:00 PM   

Falconry is the pursuit of wild quarry in its natural habitat with a trained bird of prey. In this seminar, Falconer Nate Danforth will discuss Falconry, how one becomes a falconer, its modern practice and role in the conservation of birds of prey. Seminar will conclude with a Q&A session.

Seminar Speaker: Nate Danforth  

209 Cranes of the World  
Meet at WCC:   2:50 PM  Return:   4:00 PM   

Abundant in visual imagery and storytelling, the program opens with an overview of the natural history, art, cultural symbolism and mythology of cranes followed by a brief introduction to the International Crane Foundation (ICF) and its role in crane conservation. Unique characteristics of each of the world’s 15 crane species are then highlighted with particular focus on the two species found only in North America: the abundant Sandhill Crane and highly endangered Whooping Crane.

Seminar Speaker: Erv Nichols     Sandra Noll    

NEW!! 210 Mr. Olson's Bird Call Impersonations  
Meet at WCC:   3:50 PM  Return:   5:00 PM   

Tom Olson's bird call impersonations are so good that they got him through round four of competition for America's Got Talent! Come experience Tom's talent, a skill learned while growing up on the White Mountain Apache Reservation. Tom will be presenting on 20 different birds and doing their call as he provides insight on the habits of each bird.

Seminar Speaker: Tom Olson  

Sunday 01/15/23
NEW!! 211 Rattlesnake Family Life  
Meet at WCC:   8:50 AM  Return:   10:00 AM   

Sure elephants, whales, and birds have families and take care of their kids, BUT SNAKES? In fact, they do, and we will show you videos of wild rattlesnakes caring for their kids, their neighbor’s kids, and exhibiting other behaviors you probably didn’t know snakes do.

Seminar Speaker: Melissa Amarello  


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