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Sunnylands
Into the Field: Borrego Springs Swainson’s Hawk Watch
Monday, March 16, 2020 at 7:30AM

Sunnylands Center & Gardens
37977 Bob Hope Drive
Rancho Mirage, CA 92270
Between Gerald Ford Drive and Frank Sinatra Drive


The Swainson’s Hawk Migration through Borrego Springs is a spectacle not to be missed. These 19-inch tall hawks with a wingspan of over 4 feet, travel in flocks in the spring. The town of Borrego Springs in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park (the largest state park in California) is a stopping point on their journey. Hawks spend the night in the area and, in the morning, lift off to go further north. Local hawk watchers and counters are familiar with their haunts. A waiver is required for all off-site trips and may be found on the event posting on our website. The waiver will be collected when the group gathers in the overflow lot. Participants will meet in the overflow parking lot of Sunnylands Center & Gardens at 7:30 a.m. The caravan will leave Sunnylands for the hour-and-a-half drive to Borrego Springs, going along the west side of the Salton Sea and through some of the most fascinating geology in the area. Once in town, the group will touch base with the locals and go to the spot where the hawks are predicted to lift off. As with any birdwatching activity, there is no guarantee what will happen, but historically this week has seen the largest concentrations of hawks. There could be several hundred to over one thousand. Usually, all of the hawks that spent the night have lifted off and leave the area by about 11:00 a.m. Afterwards the group may enjoy lunch in town or head back to Sunnylands. Sunnylands will be closed to the public on the date of this program. No restrooms or facilities will be available. Closed-toe shoes, hat, sunscreen, and water are essential. Binoculars, camera, snacks are optional.