2023 Raptor Fest at Hicks Orchard

May 20, 2023 @ 7:30AM — 2:00PM Eastern Time (US & Canada)

Hicks Orchard: 18 Hicks Rd Granville, NY 12832 Get Directions

2023 Raptor Fest at Hicks Orchard image

Join GBT for Raptor Fest At Hicks Orchard

Join GBT for this fun fundraiser on May 20 at Hicks Orchard in Granville NY! Proceeds will help GBT protect the Audubon-designated Important Bird Area and the birds that depend on these grasslands for survival.

After enjoying hot coffee, apple cider, and donuts, we will divide into small groups for guided bird walks in either the apple orchard or through the fields and along a wooded ridge. Exploring through sight and sound, we expect to see a variety of warblers, vireos, thrushes, thrashers, swallows, and of course Eastern Bluebirds. Our guides are hoping we also spot Scarlet Tanagers, Cooper's Hawks, Sharp-shinned Hawks, Black Vultures, Screech Owls, and American Kestrels.

Following your walk, you may have time for a tasting at the cidery before attending your choice of one of three lectures:

  • "What Makes a Birder a Birder?" by Jody W. Enck, Ph.D., Conservation Social Scientist and Founder of the Sister Bird Club Network. Jody is a social scientist who has identified 14 personality types that gain a variety of meanings from their relationships with birds.
  • "A Meadow for Bobolinks" by Martha Molnar, a freelance writer and former NY Times reporter. As told in her new book, Playing God in the Meadow: How I Learned to Admire My Weeds, Martha and her husband turned a dying apple orchard into a beautiful meadow. Bobolinks, Eastern Meadowlarks, and other ground nesters moved in - along with invasive weeds that threatened the birds’ habitat. Martha describes their struggles and triumphs.
  • "Inner Bird Beauty" by Michael Blust, Retired Biology Professor and Avid Birder. Michael explains the marvelous evolutionary anatomical and physiological adaptations that help birds fly, swim, migrate, and survive in almost every habitat on Earth.

After a "bowl" lunch by Shift Wood Fired, Trish Marki, Wildlife Educator at The Wildlife Institute of Eastern NY, will hold a live raptor demo. Trish is a licensed wildlife rehabilitator; we are in awe of her work and what we can learn from these incredible birds.

Bring your binoculars, appropriate layers, water, suitable walking shoes, and a camera.

Read our Trips and Events Release before registering and then follow the link to select either the 8:00 or 9:00 a.m. bird walk and your preferred lecture choice. For those interested in photography, Deb Bryk, a nature photographer, will join one of the 9:00 walks.