Bird Is The Word At The Point Reyes Birding & Nature Festival

The Point Reyes Birding and Nature Festival, from April 28-30, is a must see birding event sponsored by the Environmental Action Committee of West Marin! The Festival takes place at the height of spring migration within the Point Reyes National Seashore and surrounding areas featuring over 50 field events and workshops.

Participants will see migrating seabirds, waterfowl, resident and migrant land birds, raptors, alcids, and owls. In addition to the unique birding opportunities, there are stunning wildflower displays, butterflies, dragonflies, migrating whales, elephant seals, sea lions, and Tule elk waiting to be discovered.

This is an unmatched birding experience!

Youth & Family Programming

With over 60 field events to choose from, many of which, are open to families with children ages 7 and up. Below is a listing of our Sunday youth and family events, but you can also check out our full list of offerings which detail best experience and age levels per class.  

Live Birds with The Bird Rescue Center

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 10:00 am – 11:00 am | Youth & Family Programming
Guides: The Bird Rescue Center
Location: Dance Palace Community and Cultural Center
Ticket Price: FREE | Limited to 75 participants
RSVP Required | Questions? Contact us 415.663.9312 or

Calling all families with fledglings! Bring your brood out to the Dance Palace on Sunday, April 30 to learn more about birds and nature. This Youth & Family Programming will kick off with a special live bird presentation from the The Bird Rescue Center, and is sponsored by the Station House Cafe in downtown Point Reyes Station. Docents will bring three Education Ambassadors — (resident hawks, owls, and falcons whose permanent disabilities have made them non-releasable), including a great horned owl. This is a rare and memorable opportunity to see these wild birds up-close, and learn about our native bird species, their fascinating adaptations and the essential roles they play in our local ecosystems.  Afterwards join us for one of two Youth & Family bird and nature walks at Point Reyes National Seashore, or for a nature journaling class with our keynote speaker Julie Zickefoose, or have lunch then come back for our shark film and discussion with Shark Stewards founder, David McGuire.

Exploring Wetlands With Kids

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 11:15 am – 12:45 pm | Youth & Family Programming Ages 5-10
Fiona O’Kelly
Ticket Price: $10 per person | Limited to 15 total participants (including parents and children)

Following our live bird presentation, guide Fiona O’Kelly will take families with kids ages 5-10 out to explore the Giacomini Wetlands and look for birds and other wildlife. Expect the unexpected, as nature sets the stage for discovery  - under logs, on the ground and in the sky! Fiona’s passion for all things WILD is contagious, which is perfect for kids just learning about the WILD WORLD. She will use interpretation and games to get kids jazzed about the outdoors. Afterwards, stick around for a late lunch, or join us for a shark talk back at the Dance Palace.

Birds and Dunes of Abbotts Lagoon for Families

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 11:30 am – 2:30 pm | Youth & Family Programming - Ages 6 - 18
Sharon “Heron” Barnett and Kevin “Kestrel” Stockmann
Ticket Price: $20 per person | Limited to 15 participants

Following our live bird presentation, join guides Sharon Heron and Kevin Kestrel on an easy walk to Abbotts Lagoon looking for birds and other wildlife along the way. Sharon and Kevin will help everyone get good looks at many types of birds that live in the coastal scrub, on the fresh water pond, on the brackish water lagoon, amidst the sand dunes and on the open ocean. They will teach about dune ecology, ongoing dune restoration projects, and the challenges of life on the beach for the threatened snowy plovers. We’ll also learn about scat, stink beetles, river otters- anything that catches our eye! This is a family-friendly outing, with special focus on kids ages 6-18. With its rich variety of habitats, Abbotts Lagoon is a favorite birding and nature destination at Point Reyes.

Youth Nature Journaling with Keynote Speaker Julie Zickefoose

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 11:15 am – 12:45 pm | Youth & Family Programming - Ages 12-18
Julie Zickefoose
Ticket Price: $40   | Limited to 15 participants

Following our live bird presentation, join birder and artist Julie Zickefoose for a special class on nature journalling for youth ages 12-18. This is a family event where your kids will learn about nature and nature journaling. Learning how to listen and observe in nature enhances ones overall experience in nature. Bring a notebook or drawing pad and pencils along for the walk. We will explore nearby areas with flowers, plants, and birds to draw and write about.

Sharks of the Bay and Pacific Coast
Screening of film and discussion with filmmaker and founder of Shark Stewards

Sunday, April 30, 2017 | 1:00 pm – 2:30 pm | Afternoon|
David McGuire
Ticket Price: $25 | Limited to 45 participants

Join shark expert David McGuire, founder of Shark Stewards, and dive into the underwater world of the "City by the Bay." Great White sharks used to live in the San Francisco Bay, but today's top predator is the sevengill shark. Little is known about sevengill sharks behavior, reproduction, and ecology. Since 2008, Aquarium of the Bay has worked with UC-Davis' Biotelemetry Lab to track, detect the movements and analyze sevengills in San Francisco Bay. In 2009, Aquarium of the Bay released "City of the Shark," a short documentary by David McGuire and SeaStewards Media, providing a close-up look at local species, with emphasis on the sevengill shark. Narrated by Mike Gibbons, the film takes you on board the Aquarium's research vessels and dives into the Aquarium's exhibits for an up close look at these enigmatic animals. Join David for a screening of his film, "City of the Shark," followed by a lecture and discussion with the group.