Birdathon: Longhorn Trail Shutter Flutterers

6:45 AM – 11:30 AM

Here is a great opportunity for beginning area birders and amateur photographers to observe and capture pictures of all of our central Texas regulars, as well as many migrants and less-often-observed local birds… pretty darned close up. Marianne Gonta, member of Travis Audubon, is opening up her property in Wimberley to this Birdathon team! There will be almost guaranteed close up sightings of Painted Buntings, Eastern Bluebirds, Black-chinned Hummers, Woodhouse’s Scrub Jays, Northern Cardinals, Golden-fronted and Ladder-backed Woodpeckers, Lesser Goldfinches, House Finches, Eastern Phoebe, Carolina Chickadees, Black-crested Titmice, Carolina and Bewick’s Wrens, Lark and Chipping Sparrows, White-winged and Mourning Doves, Turkey and Black Vultures, and most likely a pair of very photogenic Black-bellied Whistling Ducks. Very often, Greater Roadrunners sprint to and from the little ponds and a pair of Common Raven soar around, close enough to photograph. Golden-cheeked Warblers come around now and then, and a variety of migrating warblers stop here. Summer Tanagers and Baltimore Orioles visit too, and two years ago six Mississippi Kites stopped by at this time of year to check out all the action. If that’s not enough, a half-mile walk down Longhorn Trail will likely provide photo opportunities for Vermilion and Scissor-tailed Flycatchers and several pairs of Eastern Bluebirds right from the beautiful country road.

Marianne will put out and fill dozens of bird feeders right at daybreak, and the activity is greatest from dawn until about 11:00, but feel free to come early to help put out all the feeders that are brought inside at night, and to catch the cacophony of song. The hummingbirds are most active playing in the fountains after the sun comes up between 8:00 and 9:00 which lets the light get good for photos. The Whistling Ducks will likely stop by for a splash in a tiny little pond right around sunrise and then take off again to the neighbor’s real pond where they’re nesting. We can rig up make-shift blinds in many special spots and move around with the daylight. We can also shoot from inside the house for some really great angles. Marianne is not an expert or professional photographer, but willing to coach and share what she has learned. This is a great place to learn or practice new photography technique while capturing Birdathon memories! You never know… there’s a Birdathon photography contest this year!

For directions or more information, contact Marianne Gonta at

This team will bird Friday, April 26, 6:45 AM – 11:30 AM. The fee to register for this team is $50, but if you wish you are welcome to provide an additional donation! This team is limited to 12 participants.

Note: When prompted to credit the event registration, choose the team for which you are registering.

See this team’s fundraising page here!

Payment for Birdathon events is due at registration. If you change your mind about attending an event, you may be able to transfer your registration to another Birdathon 2019 event. We sincerely appreciate your generous support! Event registration payments are considered donations and are non-refundable. Events will occur rain or shine. Please contact the Travis Audubon office with your questions.