Author, bird expert leads visitors on walks at Boyce Thompson Arboretum

Rick Wright has scheduled three days of bird walks and talks at the Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park. (Submitted photo)

Rick Wright, a New Jersey author and authority on birds, will spend three days next month at the Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park in Superior as an “ornithologist in residence.”

Mr. Wright is known as a leader at Victor Emanuel Nature Tours and author of the American Birding Association’s “Field Guide to Birds of Arizona.”

He is donating his time to raise awareness of the arboretum and funds for the gardens, according to a release.

The early morning walks and specialized classes are included with the $12.50 daily admission ($5 for ages 5-12); free to arboretum annual members and Arizona State Parks pass-holders.

Raised in Nebraska, Mr. Wright studied French, German, philosophy and life sciences there before earning higher degrees at Harvard and Princeton.

He also is the author of the American Birding Association’s field guides to birds of New Jersey, and of the “Peterson Reference Guide to North American Sparrows.”

Scheduled events are:

  • Monday, Aug. 6: Bird Walk, 6:30-8:30 a.m. This walk will take place on flat paths with frequent pauses to check out a variety of breeders and migrants, from hummingbirds to woodpeckers and chats. Time also may be spent sitting at some of the park’s water features “letting the birds find us,” according to Mr. Wright. A lecture follows at 9:30 a.m.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 7: Bird Look, 6:30-8:30 a.m. A short walk or wheelchair roll will place guests at a vantage point where they will join Mr. Wright waiting for birds to come to them.
  • Tuesday, Aug. 7: Sparrows, 9:30-11:00 a.m. This indoor introduction to sparrows examines identification secrets, their history and more. Mr. Wright stated: “You’ll never look at a sparrow the same way again.”
  • Wednesday, Aug. 8: Bird Walk 6:30-8:00 a.m. This is a repeat of the Aug. 6 event.

Mr. Wright recommends bringing a notebook and pencil, hat and sunscreen, and plenty of water to the sessions.

The arboretum is at 37615 Arboretum Way, Superior.

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