Birders Gather At Local Park

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Enjoy an extra touch of beauty at Green Valley Park by joining the Payson Birding Club for a guided bird walk.

The club holds educational, guided walks at Green Valley Park from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m., every Saturday. The walks continue through July 17, with the exception of July 3.

Participants meet at the flagpole in the northwest parking lot of the Northern Gila County Historical Museum in Green Valley Park. Organizers recommend that participants wear comfortable walking shoes, a hat and bring water too. If available, binoculars and a field guide are advisable.

The guided walks cover the distance of about a mile along Lake Drive to the pond behind the Payson Golf Course.

"Participants will see many species of birds, possibly including our hometown bald eagles," Lease said.

The Payson Birding Club began in the spring of 2001.

Lease is a member of the Maricopa Audubon Society and had been active in the organization while living in the Valley. When Lease and her husband moved to Payson she found numerous places to bird, however there was no club or group in which to meet fellow birders. So, on March 7, 2001 she held the first meeting of the Payson Bird Watchers and 27 people attended on a rain-soaked day.

The club has 66 members on their roster, and meets in the library at 1:30 p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month with the exception of July, August and December.

The programs vary, given by local birders, professional speakers from the Valley, Forest Service and professors from ASU, with video, slides and DVD presentations.

The club schedules a field trip once a month to birding areas both local and several hours away.

For more information, contact Lease at (928) 474-8719.

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