Birdwatching, wetland and prairie chicken tours, seminars to be featured

The Kansas Birding Festival will transform the Clay County community of Wakefield into a paradise for birders, naturalists, and other outdoor enthusiasts April 28 - 30. The three-day event will feature seminars on birds and birdwatching, guided field trips, food, and much more.

The event will begin Friday, April 28tgh at the Wakefield Methodist Church Community Center for registration, guided field trips to the Milford Wetlands, the Republican River Bottoms, the Kansas Landscape Arboretum, and preparation for Saturday’s tours. The event on Saturday will begin with breakfast from 4 a.m. to 5:45 a.m., followed by guided field trips, including the prairie chicken field at Fort Riley, the Konza Prairie, the Landscape Arboretum and North Timber Creek, the Milford Wetlands and Republican River Bottoms, and the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) Milford Nature Center and Fish Hatchery.

After an 11:30-1:30 lunch break, events will include optional free time to bird watch; a seminar entitled “Eagles, Terns, Endangered Species”; a bird program by Pat Silovsky of KDWP's Milford Nature Center; and birding at the Kansas Landscape Arboretum. At 7 p.m., a banquet will be held with a keynote address by wildlife photographer Bob Gress, and prizes will be given away.

On Sunday, April 30, breakfast will again be served from 4 a.m.-5:45 a.m. This will be followed by a prairie chicken field trip to Fort Riley, birding in local areas, and "Backroads Adventures" with Rick Dykstra.

Fees and pre-registration are required. For more information, contact Kansas Birding Festival, P.O. Box 175, Wakefield, KS 67487 or visit the festival website .