Birds in the Hills April 20-22


Springtime in Ohio’s hill country means sprouting buds and new growth, as creatures emerge from their winter hiding places to enjoy the abundance of Ohio’s trees and undergrowth. Also emerging with spring sprouts will be numerous bird species who call Ohio home. For three days see, hear, and learn about many of Ohio’s native Warblers and songbirds on serene walks through groves of massive Eastern Hemlocks during the Birds in the Hills Festival.

No experience required. Click here to register!

eastern hemlocks joshua mayer
A grove of Eastern Hemlocks. A one-of-a-kind tree, hemlocks create a unique environment around them that allows few plants to grow beneath their canopy. The environment is, however, very welcoming to many birds, insects and other animals. Hemlocks are currently under threat from the Hemlock Woolly Adelgid. Photo credit: Joshua Mayer (flickr)

Friday, April 20 to Sunday, April 22 at Camp Oty’Okwa, this kid-friendly event features guided bird walks through the forests of the camp, as well as field trips to Clear Creek Metro Park and Lake Logan. Attendees can also enjoy many other presentations, events and programs available around the camp throughout the weekend. All meals will be provided by Camp Oty’ Okwa.

“This is just like Magee Marsh–you can check all the warblers right off your list.” 

-Anonymous Birds in the Hills Festival Attendee

Besides seeing and hearing such birds as the Rose-breasted Grosbeak and Cerulean Warblers, attendees can listen to live music, enjoy local food, beer, and Dirty Girl Coffee and explore the caves, hills and boulders one finds when exploring beautiful Camp Oty ‘Okwa.

rose breasted grosbeak female credit matthew flikr
A female Rose-breasted Grosbeak. Photo credit: Matthew (flickr)

The Festival’s Key Note Speaker, Dr. Kelly Williams will discuss her research on the Northern Saw-whet Owl. Originally thought to not inhabit Ohio, the reclusive owl has had some of its secrets unearthed by the investigation of Williams and others at Project Owlnet. A number of other events will be taking place throughout the festival, including a visit to Moonville, Butterfly Ridge and the chance to explore nature for three days with nature enthusiasts and expert birders and environmental educators.

“The birding is good, and the camaraderie is excellent.”

-David Ackerman, Environmental Educator

Click here to view a full schedule of events for the Birds in the Hills Festival. Some events run concurrently. Contact Joe Brehm for more information about the festival:

A male Cerulean Warbler

The Birds in the Hills Festival is an annual effort between Rural Action‘s Environmental Education Program, The Ohio Ornithological Society, The Athens Area Birders, Ohio Health, United Plant Savers and Camp Oty’Okwa, which is run by Big Brother, Big Sisters of Central Ohio. Pets are not allowed during the three-day festival to ensure the best wildlife viewing and the safety of all attendees.

Check out the Birds in the Hills Podcast for more information about birding and events leading up to the festival.


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