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Friday, February 25 • 7:00am - 4:00pm
Field Learning Experience: A Day in the Sonoran Desert

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Join Arizona Game and Fish Department biologists on an exploration of the Sonoran Desert. We will spend the day in one of the most diverse portions of the Arizona Upland Sonoran Desert, just a short drive from Tucson. Our goal is to learn about the plants and animals of the desert with an emphasis on reptiles and birds.

We will focus on one or two sites where we will fan out into relatively untouched desert to look for Sonoran desert tortoises, rock-dwelling snakes and lizards, and, if we are incredibly lucky, Gila monsters – all of which will be visible nestled in their overwintering sites. If the weather cooperates, we might see some roaming about. Winter birds in the desert include Gila and Gilded Flicker, Curve-billed Thrasher, Verdin, Abert’s Towhee, Greater Roadrunner and many others. The area can be described as low, rocky hills studded with stately saguaros, mixed with paloverdes and creosote bush.

We’ll depart the conference site at 8 a.m. and drive about 40 minutes to the field site; we will head back to Tucson following lunch. We want the timing to be flexible, to allow us to take advantage of the day’s discoveries. Participants should wear sturdy walking shoes and comfortable clothes (including a jacket). Dress in layers. Bring a hat and water bottle, as well as any personal snacks or medications. Binoculars are highly recommended if you have them. We will be walking on uneven, rocky terrain and will be constantly exposed to the Arizona sun and aridity.


Friday February 25, 2022 7:00am - 4:00pm MST
Offsite: Sonoran Desert