Ornithological Society
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June 3-18, 2017: Alaska
TOS Alaska Trip with Jim Hailey and Byron Stone Click for more...

Yes, I know I said the 2015 trip was my last one. However, Byron Stone talked me into doing one more and he will join me as co-leader of this trip.

The trip cost is $3,550 for TOS members and $3,575 for non-members. The fee includes all transportation within Alaska (including flights to Nome and Barrow), entry fees, pelagic trip and guide fees. It does not include lodging (you will be provided with information about making your reservation at our host hotels), meals, incidentals or transportation to or from Anchorage.

You should plan on arriving in Anchorage on June 3 by 6 PM or sooner if you so choose. The trip will begin with a meeting at 6 PM in the lobby of the Puffin Inn (our base of operation while in Alaska) in Anchorage.

The following day we will fly to Nome where we will spend the next four days driving the three roads out into the tundra in search of birds like Bristle-thighed Curlew, Bluethroat, Northern Wheatear, Yellow Wagtail, Red-throated Loon, Wandering Tattler, Bar-tailed Godwit, and who knows what unusual species we can encounter there.

We will return to Anchorage where we will spend a day looking for Red-throated Grebe, Varied Thrush, and various shorebirds before departing the following day for Barrow, the farthest northern point of North America. In Barrow, we will hopefully find four eiders, Snow Bunting (they are like House Sparrows there) and Snowy Owl.

We will return to Anchorage and spend the next 3 days there before traveling to Seward and our trip out into Kenai Fjord NWR where we look for Kittlitz’s, Marbled and Ancient Murrelets, Red-faced Cormorants, Rhinoceros and Parakeet Auklets, Horned and Tufted Puffins and many pelagic species nesting there.

Following our return from Seward we will head for our final 3 days traveling the old Denali Highway where we hope to see Trumpeter Swan, Smith’s Longspur, Arctic Warbler and many more.

We again return to Anchorage on June 18 and our trip will end and you can return home.

This is truly a trip of a lifetime and has been enjoyed by over 150 TOS members and guests in the past. This is a very popular trip so don’t wait to secure you spot.

Texas Ornithological Society Cancellation Policy for TOS Field Trips

In the event you have to cancel, refunds are made according to the following schedule:
• If cancellation is made more than 90 days before departure date, your deposit less $100 will be refunded.
• If cancellation is made between 60 and 90 days before departure date then 50% of the trip fee is refundable.
• If cancellation is made fewer than 60 days prior to departure date, there will be no refund of the trip fee.
Note: If you cancel late (less than 90 days before departure), but you are able to find a substitute to take your place (or we have a substitute on a waiting list), once the substitute has paid Texas Ornithological Society in full for the trip, a refund of your deposit less $100 will be made.

For your protection, the purchase of trip cancellation insurance should be considered.

If you take out trip insurance the cost of the insurance is not refundable. Therefore it is best to purchase the policy just prior to making full payment for the trip or at the time you purchase airline tickets, depending upon the airline’s restrictions. TOS reserves the right to cancel any tour prior to departure, in which case full refund of the trip fee will constitute full settlement to the participant.

We strongly advise that you wait to purchase non-refundable airline travel until you receive notice from the TOS trip leader or coordinator that the trip meets minimum participation requirements.

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August 18-20, 2017: TOS Shorebird Weekender
Spend the weekend in Corpus Christi with top-notch birders  Click for more...

Spend the weekend in Corpus Christi with top-notch birders, at the height of shorebird migration, and improve your shorebird knowledge and ID skills with four hours of classes and three field trips. Mel Cooksey will teach the classroom portion and then will be joined by Larry Jordan for the field experiences.

Mel is an experienced birder who is a co-author of A Birder's Guide to the Texas Coast, an ABA/Lane Birdfinding Guide. In August 2014 he found a Bar-tailed Godwit amid hundreds of Marbled Godwits in Oso Bay, Corpus Christi –the first state record for this species. Mel’s interests include developing a greater understanding of migration trends, abundance, status and distribution. He has been a speaker and trip leader at ABA and TOS conventions and conferences, and has served on both Kansas and Texas state bird records committees. Mel was also a sub-regional editor for American Birds and North American Birds magazine, and is eBird reviewer for the Coastal Bend.

Larry Jordan has been birding for 39 years, and is one of the Coastal Bend’s top birding authorities. He has been in charge of field trips for both TOS meetings and ABA conventions. He leads migration walks at Blucher Park each spring. Larry also has authored a local birding guide for the Corpus Christi Convention and Visitors' Bureau – find it at Corpus Christi - Birding & Nature

Here is the tentative schedule:

Friday, 7 - 9 p.m. Class session
Saturday a.m. - Field trip followed by a late lunch
Saturday, 2:30 - 4:30 p.m. Class session
Saturday evening: After dinner field trip to Oso Bay.
Sunday a.m. - Field trip to Port Aransas

The fee is $75 for TOS members, and there are only 20 spaces available to assure a quality experience.  We expect this trip to fill fast.

Registration will open June 8 at 6:00 a.m. for those who are current TOS members as of June 7. Return to this post to register. Registrants will be sent a confirmation email with further information in early August.

A block of rooms (king rooms have a sleeper sofa in addition to the king bed and there are two queens in other rooms) is reserved at the Comfort Suites, 1814 Ennis Joslin Rd, Corpus Christi, TX 78412. You must contact (361) 991-7100 to request the TOS rate of $114.99/night. Rate expires on August 8. This is an excellent rate for August in Corpus, and the hotel is well-situated for the birding sites to be visited.

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