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Sipsey River Swamp Field Trip
October 17, 2015, 7:00 am–5:00 pm
Our October field trip will be a tour of two unique habitats in West Alabama. Starting just south of Tuscaloosa, we will drive through the fields and farmlands of south Tuscaloosa County looking for various fall migrants and late summer birds, including cliff swallows. Following this late morning drive through the Fosters area, we will visit the pristine wetlands and bottomland hardwood forest of the Sipsey River Swamp.
The Sipsey is one of the last wild, free-flowing swamp streams in Alabama, and is considered one of “Alabama’s Ten Natural Wonders.” Wandering through west Alabama, this 92-mile long river contains thousands of acres of bottomland wetlands and swamps, which ranks it as one of the State’s largest wetland regions. The vegetation, trees and wildlife are diverse and varied, ranging from bald cypress swamps to tupelo gum trees, swamp cottonwood, red oak, elm, sweetgum, poplar and beech. This distinctive and mystical habitat, the northern-most cypress/tupelo swampland in Alabama, is used by migrating and wintering waterfowl along the river. Expect to see various egrets, herons and fall migrants including woodland and wetland warblers throughout this enchanting bottomland.
Please bring water, lunch and a full tank of gasoline. Binoculars, cameras and spotting scopes are all welcome. Birmingham Audubon will also have binoculars for anyone who needs them to borrow for the day.
TRIP LEADER: Matt Hunter, (205) 915-8186 with Ken Wills. In case of inclement weather, contact the trip leader for last-minute information.
MEETING PLACE: McDonald’s, 1547 Montgomery Hwy, Hoover. Please park across from the McDonald’s in the parking area next to the restaurant. Tuscaloosa-area friends may meet us about 8:30-8:45 a.m. at the Chevron station, northeast corner of U.S. Highway 11 and Tuscaloosa County Road 10, just off I-20/59 at Exit 62.
MEETING TIME: We plan on a 7 a.m. departure, so please allow at least 15 minutes for sign-in and pre-trip instructions.