Wings Over Water Festival features field trips to Semiahmoo

Published on Wed, Mar 7, 2012
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This great blue heron caught a mouthful last week as local photographer Eric Ellingson caught the bird chowing down.

The 10th Annual Wings Over Water Northwest Birding Festival (WOW) on Saturday, March 17, will feature two field trips to Semiahmoo Spit narrated by Jim Jorgensen. 

Jorgensen’s background as a geology and ornithology teacher, as well as founder of the Marine Education Foundation, which was responsible for creating Blaine Marine Park, will help participants discover what makes this area so intriguing. “Most of the land in the area was left by glaciers about 10,000 years ago and is constantly changing due to weathering and erosion,” Jorgensen said.

The field trip also includes a visit to the Semiahmoo APA Museum to learn about early commercial salmon fishing and canneries that once thrived here.

And, of course, the field trip includes the birds! Participants will be able to see and identify many bird species visiting here on their spring migration such as Black Brant, and local species including bald eagles and a variety of water and shore birds. Bring binoculars, wear comfortable walking shoes and dress for the weather. A bird identification guide will be available during the field trip as well as opportunities to view birds up close through a spotting scope.

The bus tours leave Blaine Middle School at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Each tour is 2.5 hours long, allowing for plenty of time to enjoy the rest of the festival activities. Space is limited, so pre-register by calling the Blaine Visitor’s Center at 360/332-4544. Day-of registration begins at 9 a.m. Saturday, March 17 at the WOW festival headquarters, Blaine Middle School Cafeteria, 975 H Street.  There is a $5 fee for this fun, educational tour, which includes a snack provided by Nature’s Path, Cost Cutter and Totally Chocolate. 

For a complete schedule of festival events, including field trips, workshops, expert speakers, kids’ activities and more, visit or call 360/332-4544.