So what that really means is that we're that much closer to 2010 and the third annual Sax-Zim Bog Winter Birding Festival.......where you'll get the chance to see really cool birds like this Great Gray Owl!
If you plan on attending this year's festival, you'll almost certainly see a Northern Hawk Owl as there are quite a number of them showing up in northern Minnesota already this year. (this is another photo taken by my Sissy)
The 2010 Sax-Zim Bog Winter Birding Festival will begin on Friday, February 12th and run through Sunday, February 14th. This year's festival will be limited to 150 participants and you can find out more information about the festival by clicking on this link.
I attended the first festival 2 years ago with my dear blogging friend Lynne (of Hasty Brook). Lynne and I had a great time at that festival and that was the only year I managed to check off EVERY woodpecker species on my Minnesota checklist when I saw the Black-Backed Woodpecker and this Three-Toed Woodpecker (both lifers!)
This year's program is a veritable "who's who" of well-known Minnesota birders including my friend John Hockema. The excellent selection of stops during the field trips will guarantee that you'll have a chance to see these beautiful (and declining) Evening Grosbeaks.
Not to mention Pine Grosbeaks, Common Redpolls, and if you're really lucky, a Hoary Redpoll or two.
It looks like this year's festival is going to be the best yet. Great speakers, awesome meals, incredible birding, friends, and fun. Don't let the thought of February in Minnesota intimidate you......just dress in layers like us smart Minnesotans do (you won't be forced to stand outside all day anyway and the buses will be kept running for those folks who need a warm-up).
I'm hoping that I'll be able to attend the festival with Lynne again this year and you can help me -- just go to my Etsy shop in my sidebar link and make a purchase for yourself or a gift -- all purchases will help subsidize my trip to the 2010 Sax-Zim Bog Winter Birding Festival (hey, I'm not above a little shameless self-promotion to achieve my birding goals!)