Kite Tales - December 2016

ISSUE NUMBER 4 • December 2016

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Kite Tales

the Great Florida Birding & Wildlife Trail's monthly newsletter

Birders flock from all over the world to visit Florida

Upcoming Events


DECEMBER 14, 2016 - JANUARY 5, 2017

Since the Christmas Bird count began over 100 years ago, it has relied on volunteers to gather critical data about the patterns of bird behavior. Join an effort near you to participate. There is a specific methodology for the Count, so it’s important that you contact a coordinator near you if you wish to take part. This is a fun and rewarding activity for bird-lovers of any stripe. Many counts are held throughout Florida, just find the one nearest you!



JANUARY 20, 2017 - JANUARY 22, 2017

This festival is perfect for birders visiting Florida or locals wanting to learn more from well-known, knowledgeable birding guides. Add to your life list at an amazing birding area, the 20,000-acre Lake Apopka North Shore. Two full-day trips and 9 half-day trips led by well-known local birding guides are offered, along with two dinners and keynotes. On Saturday participate in the 5th annual Free family-oriented Birdapalooza festival with photo walks, bird banding and guided bus tours.



JANUARY 25, 2017 - JANUARY 30, 2017

The Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival is a 6-day annual event held in Brevard County, Florida the last week in January. We’re proud to assemble a prestigious group of locally, nationally and internationally recognized scientists, biologists, photographers, ornithologists, naturalists, artists and authors.


Red-cockaded Woodpecker by Andy Wraithmell

Babcock Webb WMA Field Trip

Saturday, January 21, 2017 from 6:30 AM to 9:30 AM 

Join Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission staff, Andy Wraithmell (Information Specialist), Kellie Phillips (Red-cockaded Woodpecker biologist), Whitney Gray (Great Florida Birding & Wildlife Trail Coordinator) and Peter Kleinhenz (Interpretive Planner/Writer) for a morning field trip at the famous Fred C. Babcock Cecil M. Webb Wildlife Management Area. Participants will have opportunity to see and learn about the Federally Endangered Red-cockaded Woodpecker, as well as other pine flatwoods species such as Eastern Towhee, Northern Bobwhite and Bachman's Sparrow. The field trip will also visit two wetland areas to search for wading birds such as American Bittern and Tricolored Heron. Other species the field trip may encounter include Limpkin and Bald Eagle.

The field trip is limited to 20 participants so register early (FREE) to avoid missing out. CLICK HERE for more information on this field trip and how to register

Sunrise at Babcock Webb WMA

75th WMA Anniversary

Celebrate 75 years wild at the Babcock/Webb Wildlife Management Area January 21, 2017 10 AM to 2:30 PM

Florida has one of the largest wildlife conservation land systems in the United States. These lands secure habitat for many of the state’s threatened and endangered species. The Fred Babcock/Cecil Webb Wildlife Management Area in Charlotte County (not to be confused with Babcock Ranch) was purchased in 1941 and will be the site of a kick-off celebration January 21, 2017 from 10 AM-2:30 PM.  The entrance to Babcock Webb is located on Tucker Grade (exit 158) off I-75. 

The event will offer range of free fun family activities including fishing, shooting sports, kayaking, hayrides with biologists, and many other educational activities and exhibits. 

An early morning Red-cockaded Woodpecker birding tour of Babcock Webb WMA will be available. Offered by reservation only, participants will tour the area with FWC biologists and Wildlife Viewing Program staff. For more information and/or to make a reservation see the article above.

This kick-off event is the first in a year-long schedule of activities around the state. Visit the 75th WMA Anniversary website for more information.

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eBooks for the trail

Three of our four trail section guides (Panhandle, East and South) are available as eBooks from Amazon. You can purchase them from Amazon for your Kindle. Don’t have a kindle? Then we got you covered! Download the FREE Kindle Reader App from iTunes (iPhone & iPad) or Google Play (android devices) and then purchase the guides. Need Help? Help for Apple devices or Help for Android devices

The west section guide will be available in February 2017.

In this Issue 

  • Winter Events
  • RCW Field Trip
  • 75th WMA anniversary


The Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail (GFBWT) is a network of 510 sites spread throughout the sunshine state. The Trail is a program of the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, supported in part by the Florida Department of Transportation and the Fish and Wildlife Foundation of Florida. The Trail is possible thanks to dozens of federal, state, and local government agencies, non-governmental organizations and private landowners. Continued, broad-based support and grassroots community investment will continue to make the Great Florida Birding and Wildlife Trail a success for Florida and for our feathered friends.



Visit our website to plan your next adventure