Randall Benton / RBenton@sacbee.com

A flock of Red-winged blackbirds swirls around three Sandhill Cranes in the Cosumnes River Preserve, and on Staten Island near Thornton on Thursday. It's bird-watching season, and two major birding events take place this weekend and next. The Sandhill Crane Festival takes place in Lodi Friday through Sunday, and the first-ever Swan Festival will be in Marysville Nov. 9 and 10.

Fall means great bird-watching in Sacramento

Published: Friday, Nov. 1, 2013 - 12:00 am
Last Modified: Friday, Nov. 1, 2013 - 12:24 am

With the autumn weather upon us, Sacramento Valley is alive with birds. Millions of waterfowl, raptors and songbirds make their fall home in the valley, offering some of the world’s best bird-watching and festivals to go with it. Today marks the start of the Lodi Crane Festival, which continues through Sunday in its 17th year. Next weekend brings the inaugural California Swan Festival in Marysville and Yuba City. Meanwhile, dozens of state and federal wildlife refuges offer self-guided bird-watching opportunities every day. One of the favorites is Cosumnes River Preserve just 30 minutes south of Sacramento on Franklin Boulevard near Galt, which is open daily from sunrise to sunset.

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