Birding Tours Offered in McCurtain County

February 27, 2017

   "Find your next life bird in McCurtain County, Oklahoma" is more than a saying; it is a distinct possibility at the 9th Annual Red Slough Birding Convention, held May 6-9, 2017.

   Hosted by the Idabel Chamber of Commerce, the birding convention pairs both beginning and advanced bird watchers with an experienced tour guide to explore three of McCurtain County's diverse conservation areas. 

   "Participants will have the chance to see a variety of wetland birds at Red Slough Wildlife Management Area, ranging from the camouflaged American bittern to the multi-colored purple gallinule," said Robert Bastarache, U.S. Forest Service district biologist and event committee member.

   "We also offer tours of the Little River National Wildlife Refuge, where several uncommon warblers are often spotted," said Bastarache. "Participants can even watch for the rare red-cockaded woodpecker at the McCurtain County Wilderness Area and talk to the biologists managing for this endangered bird."

   "It's not uncommon for participants to see more than 150 species of birds during the four-day convention," said Bastarache.
   In addition to the morning bird-themed tours, participants of the Red Slough Birding Convention can also take guided field trips to observe the region's diverse dragonflies, prairie wildflowers and champion trees. 
   The $125 registration fee covers the six tour options (including transportation to the conservation areas), three presentations, a banquet and the 2017 birding convention T-shirt.
   More information about the event, including the registration form and past bird lists, can be found at
One of the birds participants of the 9th Annual Red Slough Birding Convention may spy is the colorful, but rare to Oklahoma, purple gallinule. (USDA Forest Service)