Leading a local community in appreciating, understanding, and protecting birds and their natural habitats.

Field Trips

Seattle Audubon offers field trips throughout the year. Beginner birders are encouraged to join any field trip, and trip listings contain details about pace, terrain, walking distance, and information about vehicle travel.

Neighborhood Bird Walk are less formal than field trips, as they do not require sign-ups and tend to last around two hours.  NBW's introduce participants to many fine birding locations in the greater Seattle area.  Families are welcome.

To sign-up for our monthly eNews with updates on events, opportunities, and field trip and neighborhood bird walk listings, fill out this form

New field trips are generally posted on the first day of the month.

To register by phone call 206-523-4483, Monday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. or visit The Nature Shop to register in-person.

You may sign yourself and one guest up for no more than two trips per month.

We operate under the expectation that folks will attend the trips for which they sign up.

Saturday, November 23, 2019
Union Bay Natural Area (Montlake Fill)
Leader: Jean Olson (360-220-5735 day of trip)
Meeting spot: 8:00 AM, parking lot east of Center for Urban Horticulture (near greenhouse area), 3501 NE 41st Street, Seattle, WA 98195
Limit: 12
Trip Accessibility: 1(leisurely pace) B (soft ground, gravel, pavement), about 1 mile walking, no vehicle travel

We hope to find around 40 avian species in this morning outing. Our list at this time of year should include a variety of water birds, native sparrows, winter migrants, and an unexpected highlight or two. Since restroom facilities are very limited, stop by the QFC at the University Village on the way to field trip site. Expect to spend about three to four hours exploring the nooks and crannies of the wetlands and small woodlands UBNA provides. Bring binoculars and dress to stay warm while exposed to the elements. Boots are recommended. Scopes are welcome. Should be over by early afternoon.

Sunday, November 24, 2019 
Magnuson Park, Seattle
Leader: Jen McKeirnan
Meeting spot: 8:30 AM, Promontory Point Environmental Learning Center, Magnuson Park
Limit: 10
Trip Accessibility: 2 (moderate pace, steady but with breaks to observe), B (gravel trails and pavement), 2-3 miles mostly level walking, no vehicle travel

Magnuson Park offers a variety of habitats, including ponds, forest, fields. This field trip is geared for any experience level. Bring binoculars and a scope if you own one.  Dress to stay warm and dry.  Restrooms will be available. Over around 11:00 a.m.

Saturday, November 30, 2019
Port Townsend and Marrowstone Island
Leader: Neil Zimmerman (206-200-6700, day of trip only)
Meeting spot: 6:15 AM prompt so we can catch the ferry
Green Lake Park & Ride (a.k.a Ravenna P&R) is at 6601 8th Ave NE, Seattle 98115.  It is located under I-5 on the north side of NE 65th Street.
Limit: 11 in 3 cars
Trip Accessibility: 1 (leisurely pace), B (soft ground, gravel, dirt roads), less than a mile walking, significant vehicle travel with moderate in-and-out of vehicles

A perfect trip for coffee drinkers (not required): chilly weather and plenty of bathroom stops. Even a coffee/hot chocolate stop at the Nordland store. Birding stops will include Mystery Bay, Fort Flagler, and Port Townsend. Black Turnstones, Long-tailed Ducks, Marbled and Ancient Murrelets are a possibility. We’ll travel mostly by car and take short walks. Scopes a plus. Bring a lunch, water and money for the ferry and lattes. Dress for blustery weather in layers with rain gear. Bring treats for leader. Return by late afternoon or early evening. Carpool cost: $30 each car shared equally by passengers, plus the cost of the ferry shared by driver and riders. Discover Pass is needed by drivers.


Date: Saturday, December 7, 2019 
Richmond Beach Saltwater Park, Shoreline, WA
Leader: Joe Sweeney
Meeting Spot: 8:30am, Parking lot at the bottom of the entrance road, near the restrooms
Limit: 10
Trip Accessibility: 1 (leisurely, many stops to observe), C (hiking trails with gently rolling hills); 2-3 miles walking with no in-and-out of vehicles

Expect to walk 2–3 leisurely paced miles, including some hills and steps. We will first walk the main paths and steps in this very scenic park. Then, we’ll return to our cars, grab our spotting scopes, and walk the short distance to the beach for some seabird watching overlooking the Puget Sound. The weather is usually cooler on the beach, so wear layers and rain gear, if necessary. Bring binoculars, of course, and a scope, if you have one. (We will share spotting scopes, so it’s not a problem if you don’t have one). Please bring along your sense of humor, but leave your pets at home, even if they have a good sense of humor. Over around 11:00am.

Saturday, December 7, 2019
Juanita Bay Park, Log Boom Park, and UW Bothell Crows
Leaders:  Whitney Neufeld-Kaiser (day of trip only, 206-430-4620) and Peter Gurney
Meeting Spot: 12:00 noon, Bothell P&R (10303 Woodinville Dr., Bothell)
Limit: 10 (plus leaders) in 3 cars
Trip Accessibility: 1(leisurely, many stops to observe), A ((pavement, mostly level), Mileage (2-3 miles walking)

Juanita Bay Park, with its diverse habitat, is one of the best places for winter birding in the Puget Sound area.  Over-wintering ducks, grebes, and other water birds can be seen on the bay, the marshy cattail areas host Virginia Rail and Wilson’s Snipe, and the bushes and trees of the park are great habitat for sparrows, wrens, woodpeckers, and the like.  We’ll spend a couple of hours exploring the park along its wide trails.  Depending on time, we may then stop at the Sammamish River Trail and/or Log Boom Park.  Then we’ll head to the UW Bothell campus, where the wetlands shelter up to 20,000 American Crows on winter nights.  As sunset approaches, we’ll settle in at a place on campus where we’ll be able to watch as thousands of crows gradually gather on the surrounding roofs before moving together into the wetlands for the night.  Return to Bothell P&R around 5:30.  Come dressed to be outside for several hours.  Carpool cost:  $5.00 per passenger, which includes parking on UW Bothell campus.

Sunday, December 8, 2019 
Whidbey Island Traverse
Leaders: Scott Ramos and Andy Jacobson
Meeting Spot: 6:00 AM, Greenlake (Ravenna) P&R
Limit 6 in 2 cars
Trip Accessibility: 1 (leisurely, many stops to observe), C (gravel trails and pavement), 2 miles walking 

Whidbey Island offers a variety of intriguing habitats to birds and birders, from open salt water to quiet bays, small lakes and marshes, to dense northwest forest and shrubby meadows. A traverse of the island (we will go north to south) should provide opportunities for many winter species of both water and land birds. Bring lunch, snacks and fluids for a long, intense day of birding. Dress for cool and wet NW weather (layers!), including footwear suited for walking on hillsides, wet grass and beaches. Scopes will be useful if you have one. We’ll be on the lookout for loons, grebes, scoters and Long-tailed Duck on the open water, raptors and other waterfowl inland. Return via Clinton ferry in late afternoon/evening – please be flexible, as we cannot guarantee we will make a specific ferry. Discover Pass needed by drivers. $50.00 per car shared equally by riders, plus cost of ferry shared by driver and riders.

Sunday, December 8, 2019
South King County and Puget Sound
Leaders: Matt Bartels (day of trip cell 206-595-7027) and Dasha Gudalewicz
Meeting Spot: 7:00 AM, Greenlake (Ravenna) P&R
Limit: 10
Trip Accessibility: 1 (leisurely pace), B (soft ground, gravel, dirt roads), less than a mile walking, significant vehicle travel with moderate in-and-out of vehicles

We’ll look for loons, grebes, alcids and ducks, keeping an eye out for such hard-to-find birds as Ancient Murrelet.  We’ll work our way south along the Puget Sound coast checking several good viewing points.  Bring lunch, water & snacks, and dress for cold and rainy weather.  Scopes & 2-way radios a plus. Over by late afternoon. Drivers will need a Discover Pass. Carpool cost $22.50 per car, shared equally by riders. 

Saturday, December 14, 2019
Skagit Flats
Leaders: Jean Olson (day of trip cell 360-220-5735), and Sarah Peden
Meeting Spot: 7:00 AM, Green Lake (Ravenna) P&R
Limit: 10 in 3 cars
Trip accessibility: 1 (leisurely, many stops to observe), B (soft ground, sand, gravel, dirt roads), less than 2 miles walking

This trip will visit several hot spots for raptors, waterfowl, and shorebirds in the Skagit, and Samish flats. We’ll start at the Eide Road and continue into the Skagit Flats. Depending on recent sightings, we may visit Wiley Slough, Hayton Reserve and other spots. We’ll then continue on to Padilla Bay, and the East and West 90s on the Samish Flats, finishing up in on Samish Island. Some short walking for better viewing is possible, but not mandatory at each area.  Warning!  Hunting season will be in progress so this could limit waterfowl viewing. Bring: rain gear and warm clothes and shoes, lunch, snacks and drinks.  Scopes will be a plus for shorebirds and diving ducks on Samish Bay. Carpool costs: $50 each car shared equally by riders. Drivers should bring a current Discover Pass. Anticipate return to Ravenna about early evening (earlier if the weather is really awful!).

Saturday, December 14, 2019 
Green Lake
Leaders: Louis Kreemer and Martin Muller 
Meeting Spot: 8:00 AM, Bathhouse Theater, West Beach (between water and bathhouse)
Limit: 12
Trip Accessibility: 1 (leisurely pace, A (solid pavement, sidewalk, mostly level), 3 miles walking

Green Lake is an excellent place to observe birds up close.  This time of year most winter ducks are around as well as resident Pied-billed Grebes.  The local eagles should be here.  We should encounter some goldfinches and kinglets as well as Bushtits, nuthatches, and chickadees.  And who knows what else?  Besides bird identification and bird behavior, Green Lake history and ecology are also on the menu. Dress for standing still.  Layers are advised.  ’Tis better to shed than to shiver!  Bring snacks and water.  If you have a scope please bring it.  Over by noon or whenever we’ve worn out the hardiest of you!

Sunday, December 15, 2019
Lincoln Park
Leaders: Jen McKeirnan & Jen Vanderhoof
Meeting Spot: 8:30 AM, Lincoln Park South-end Parking Lot, located at Fauntleroy Way SW & SW Cloverdale St.
Limit: 10
Trip Accessibility: 1 (leisurely pace), 2 (gravel trails and pavement), ~4 miles of walking with some gentle hills, no vehicle travel

Explore the West Seattle waterfront and woodlands in search of wintering and resident species.  Expect to see ducks, loons, grebes and alcids on the water.  Woodland bird sightings bring wrens, sparrows, chickadees, kinglets and raptors.  This field trip is geared for beginner to advanced birders.  Expect to walk up to 4 leisurely paced miles with some hills.  Bring binoculars, and a scope if you own one.  Dress to stay warm and dry.  Restrooms will be available.  Bring water and snacks.  Over around noon.

Sunday, December 15, 2019 
Magnuson Park, Seattle
Leader: Jan Bragg (206-234-7196, day of trip only)
Meeting Spot: 9:00 AM, Education Pavilion, Magnuson Park (west side of boat launch parking lot E-1.  At the end of drive, on your right, after entering Magnuson Park from NE 65th St entrance).  Bus #75 or #62.
Limit: 12 
Trip Accessibility: 1 leisurely (many breaks to stop and observe), C (hiking trails with gentle hills), 2-3 miles, no vehicle travel  

Magnuson Park offers a variety of habitats, including forest, ponds, fields, and a lake shoreline. This outing is suitable for beginner or intermediate bird-watchers, including children accompanied by an adult. We will walk uphill and down, searching for common songbirds which spend the winter in Seattle; emphasis on birding by ear.  We’ll end along the lake, looking at wintering ducks and gulls. Over early afternoon.

Trip Accessibility Indicators

Click here for field trip archives.

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