Snow Goose Festival
The 16th Annual .Snow Gooses Festival is organized by Altacal Audubon Society. This year there will be over 60 field trips,and workshops along with an art show. The workshops and field trips are varied youth, beginner birders and experience birders will all find several field trips and or workshops suited to their interest and experience level.
Dates: Jan. 21st – Jan. 25th
The Snow Goose Festival is situated in one of the greatest migratory pathways in the entire world, the Pacific Flyway. This flyway stretches from the Bering Strait on the coast of Alaska to the steeps at Patagonia in South America.
The Northern Sacramento Valley has some of the most accessible viewing areas on this migratory pathway. Tens of Thousands Snow Geese choose to winter in the Sacramento Valley. Close to one and half million use the Pacific Flyway.
The Snow Goose Festival is an annual event held in Chico, Ca each winter. This year the event will run from Jan. 21 through Sunday, Jan. 25th. The mission of the festival is to celebrate the Snow Geese and to increase public awareness, understanding, appreciation and the conservation of the incredible wildlife and related habitats of the Northern Sacramento Valley.
Online registration is available until Wed. Jan. 21st. Please visit the Snow Goose Festival website to check for open field trips. A few of the trips still open are; Marathon Big Birding Day in Colusa County, Marathon Big Birding Day in Butte County, Bidwell’s Yah Trail, Winter Raptors on the Sacramento Refuge Fly-off to name a few.
Another open field trip that is not entirely focused on birding is the Birds and Rice Growers tour which is on Friday. The tour will include the rice drying operations at the plant in Richvale.
Special field trips to areas that are not always open to the general public include; Rancho Esquon, and Dye Creek Preserve.
Rancho Esquon is a working ranch and it is common to see Sandhill Cranes during the winter months on the ranch. Dye Creek Preserve is in Eastern Tehama County. Lewis’s Woodpecker, Acorn Woodpecker, Oak Titmouse, California Quail, Ferruginous Hawk, Bald and Golden Eagle are all common.
The bird carving, Gardens as Habitat, and photography workshops are still open. You do not have to be a “birder” to enjoy these workshops.
Field trips and workshops range in prices from 8 dollars to 45 dollars.
Youth Oriented Programs
On Sat. and Sunday several workshops are designed especially for youth at the Chico Masonic Family Center. Smokey the Bear and the Blue Goose will be making an appearance. Children can earn a Junior Ranger Badge and a Junior Naturalist Certificate.
Steve Zachery from Lassen Volcanic National Park with be leading a workshop on Sunday 11:00 am – 12:30 pm which will teach children how to identify the four major types of volcanoes. If you have not visited Lassen Park it is worth adding to your list of National Parks to visit. Lassen Park is the only National Park in the U.S. that has all four types of volcanoes within park boundaries.
Lassen Park is home to 216 species of birds. The park is part of several monitoring programs and a bird banding station. Bird list for Lassen Park.
Fifty-five artists have submitted work to be on display at the Avenue 9 Gallery at 180 E. Ninth and The Esplande. Artwork will be on display from Jan. 16th- February 7th. There will be a free reception on Jan. 23rd from 5- 8 pm.
List of artists displaying their work.
If you have a few extra days in the area, plan a stay at the St. Bernard Lodge. St. Bernard Lodge is about one hour north of Chico and 20 minutes from the SW entrance of Lassen Park. St. Bernard Lodge is also about 40 minutes from the Bizz Johnson Trail which is a California Watchable Wildlife Viewing Area. Bizz Johnson Trail is home to 100 bird species.