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Irvine Ranch Conservancy hosts 24-hour ‘virtual bird watch’ starting Tuesday morning

Do you love birds but will be stuck at a computer Tuesday?

The Irvine Ranch Conservancy is hosting a 24-hour “virtual bird watch,” beginning at 9 a.m., featuring a new migratory specimen each hour. A photograph and background information on the featured bird will be posted.

The bald eagle, Cassin’s kingbird, hooded oriole, Cooper’s hawk and great blue heron are among those to be highlighted.

With more than 150 migratory birds visit the nearly 40,000 acres overseen by the conservancy, the postings will include an explanation of where to look for each bird on conservancy turf.  Additionally, one of the featured bird posts will be accompanied by a sweepstakes entry opportunity to win binoculars, a conservancy hat and an Orange County bird-watching book. The social media event can be seen on Irvine Ranch Natural Landmarks’ Facebook, Instagram and Twitter pages.


Peak migratory season is underway, with birds sightings typically increasing into the winter.

“Winter rains rejuvenate the landscape, providing food and shelter for the birds,” said Dave Raetz, deputy director of the conservancy. “The birds become more active as a result, so you’re more likely to see them when you’re out on the landmarks.”

The open space of the historic Irvine Ranch land has been declared a natural landmark by both the state and federal government, with the conservancy denoting 18 specific “landmarks” within the territory.

They range from Whiting Ranch Wilderness Park  and Coal Canyon Nature Reserve in the mountains and foothills of Cleveland National Park to the coastal Crystal Cove State Park and Laguna Coast Wilderness Park.

The landmark areas are visited by more than 160,000 people each year and the conservancy hosts numerous programs daily, including bird-watching and geology tours, full moon and photo hikes, guided horse and mountain bike rides, and habitat restoration sessions.

For more about the area and activities there, visit

Source: Orange County Register

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