Go behind the locked gates at Wheeler National Wildlife Refuge
The last of the fall migrants will have moved south by the time you read this newsletter, and a whole host of winter visitors will have taken their place in your yards and feeders. Kinglets and red-breasted nuthatches have already arrived, as of early October. Winter is right around the corner, and that means it is time for the annual Birmingham Audubon trip to Wheeler NWR, near Decatur in North Alabama. Plan to join us on Saturday, November 17 to view thousands of Snow and Canada Geese, ducks, ducks and more ducks, perhaps a few Sandhill Cranes and whatever else decides to surprise us!
Travel Plans: Our gathering place is the parking lot behind the Wells Fargo Bank at the Fieldstown Road Shopping Center in Gardendale, just off I-65N at exit #271 (665 Fieldstown Road, Gardendale, AL, 35071). Turn right on to Fieldstown Road, another right onto Odum Road, and an immediate left into the shopping center. We will leave at 7:00 a.m. and caravan up I-65N toward Decatur to the Priceville exit (# 334), a drive of approximately 60 miles, and reconvene at the Hardee’s at 8:30 a.m.
After a rest break, we will announce further details. Dwight Cooley, refuge manager, will be lead us through various sections of the refuge, such as White Springs dike, Arrowhead Landing at Limestone Bay, Beaver Dam Peninsula with its viewing platform, and the Buckeye Unit of the Refuge. One major bonus is that we will be able to travel to areas of the refuge that are behind gates that are normally locked and inaccessible to cars. This will be an all-day trip, so bring a picnic lunch, drinks and snacks. Remember, weather this time of year can be changeable, so dressing in layers is advised. Have a full tank of gas. Bring your binoculars and spotting scopes. For those who wish, supper may be shared at a local restaurant at day’s end.
Trip Leader: For questions and details, please call our field trip leader: Greg Harber, 251-2133.
665 Fieldstown Road, Gardendale, AL, 35071, 35068