Maricopa Audubon Society Birds in Maricopa County

Maricopa Audubon Society Field Trips

Useful Field Trip Information

Car Pooling: Please make every effort to organize your own carpool; consolidate vehicles at meeting places and/or contact leaders for car pooling assistance. Be courteous to your driver and help cover their driving expenses. We recommend that passengers reimburse drivers 20 cents per mile.

Limit: Maximum number of participants per field trip. Please call early to make your reservations.

Difficulty Levels 1 through 5: We use a difficulty scale. 1 equals very low level of exertion, short walking distance, considerable birding from vehicle and possible multiple birding stops. 5 equals very high level of difficulty with respect to exertion. Longer hiking distances are expected with possible steep trails. All trips are level 1 unless noted otherwise.

Audubon Society Field Trips

Day Passes Required for National Forests. Many favorite spots in our National Forests now require Day Use Passes. You are responsible to acquire a day pass ($6) in advance of field trips with an asterisk (*). Passes are available by phone or mail, at FS district and ranger offices, Big 5, some Circle K’s, the Shell station at Tom Darlington and Cave Creek Road and elsewhere. Visit for more information.

Facebook Page: MAS member, Michael Plagens, has organized a Facebook page to share information about upcoming field trips and to organize your own trips. Please visit and "like" this page to get announcement sent to your email.


  • Be courteous to the trip leader and help cover their gas costs.
  • Wear neutral colored clothing and sturdy walking shoes.
  • Bring sunscreen, sunglasses, head protection and water.
  • Always bring your binoculars. Bring a scope if recommended.
  • Be quiet so others can bird by ear.
  • Unless stated otherwise, reservations are required.
  • Avoid wearing bright colors.

Hot Spot Saturdays 
MAS will offer a series of trips in and around Maricopa County to discover our bird diversity and see what birds are where throughout the year. For full details, contact the trip leader. Limit 8.  
November 18: Santa Cruz Flats
January 20: Arlington Valley 
February 24: A West Valley location (for thrashers and sparrows)
March 24: Jewel of the Creek
April 7: West Valley Buckeye area 
May 19:  Papago Park and Zoo Ponds 
Leader: Veronica Heron,

Tempe Town Lake Saturdays
Saturday, November 18
Search for migrating and wintering waterfowl. Bring a friend who has never birded before. 8:00-10:30 am. Limit 10. 
Saturday, December 16
Bring a small, homemade, hand-me-down, or very inexpensive gift that has something to do with birding to share with another. We will draw numbers, then, as we bird, talk about the many nonmaterialistic gifts of birding that we enjoy. 8:00 to 10:30 am Limit 10.
Leader: Bobbe Taber 

Pima Canyon. Photo by Laurie Nessel

Saturday, November 18
Pima Canyon,
South Mountain Park
Desert species, including raptors and possible migrants. Rock Art. Difficulty: 3. Limit 8.
Leader: Myron Scott. Reservations,

Wednesday/Thursday, November 29-30 
Safford/Roper Lake/Mt. Graham

Start early and bird our way to Safford, probably stopping at Boyce Thompson Arboretum and Oak Flat, before heading to Cluff Ranch Wildlife Area and possibly Roper Lake before it gets dark. Explore Mt. Graham the next day, as far as we can get in the time allotted, so that we return to the Phoenix area about 6:00 pm. The variety of habitats should reveal woodpeckers, nuthatches, robins, bluebirds, wintering sparrows, and waterfowl. Expenses include one night at a moderate hotel in Safford, meals, entrance fees and a gas donation. Difficulty: 1-2. Limit 7.
Leader: Kathe Anderson,

Saturday, December 2
Gila River Indian Community Winter Bird Count

It is always a treat to bird on the Gila River community and this is a wonderful opportunity to share your knowledge with the GRIC youth as well as adult members eager to observe and protect the local fauna.
Please see more information here.

Christmas Bird Counts begin December 14, 2017. See schedule here.

Thursday, December 7
Apache Trail and Roosevelt Lake
A long, winding, lovely drive on the Apache Trail, pulling off wherever it looks birdy on the way to Roosevelt Lake. Picnic, stop at viewpoints along the lake to see waterfowl. Expect common desert species including Gila Woodpeckers, Cactus and Rock Wrens, wintering sparrows, and Greater Roadrunner, as well as Western and Eared Grebes, ducks and raptors at the lake. Return via Globe and arrive in the Phoenix area about 5:00 pm. Difficulty: 1-2. Limit 7.
Leader: Kathe Anderson,

December or January
Plume Grass Removal project: either Pima Canyon (South Mountain Park), or Lost Dutchman State Park
To reduce the fire hazard produced by this exotic pest plant, come lend a hand as we dig or pull grass plants out of the washes in this habitat. We will bag the grass and haul it out. Birding for half the field time will likely produce wintering species and desert birds. Future return visits to check our results will be planned. Exact date not yet confirmed.
Please email your willingness to be contacted to help:






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Last updated: November 10, 2017 18:53