Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival Celebrates 20th Year

Sunday event is open to anyone who is either paying the $25 special price which includes the one day registration and a ticket for John Moran, OR anyone that has paid the full festival registration and a ticket to John Moran.

The Space Coast Birding and Wildlife Festival (SCBWF) will soon mark its 20th Anniversary with an extraordinary program of activities. Presented by Swarovski Optik and the Brevard Nature Alliance, this exciting event takes place January 25 - 30, 2017 at the Titusville Campus of Eastern Florida State College. In addition to numerous talks and workshops focusing on birds, this year's schedule includes an afternoon of informative talks on our greatest resource, the Indian River Lagoon, and an amazing assemblage of international travel providers.

The SCBWF has something for everyone – from lectures and short field trips geared to first time birders and wildlife enthusiasts to workshops and full-day marathon trips for those who have been observing wildlife for a long time. A stellar group of wildlife photographers will host outdoor workshops and indoor classes on all aspects of photography. A sample of their offerings includes Capturing Birds in Flight, Fundamentals of Wildlife Photography, Creating Spectacular Coastal Landscape Photos, Introduction to Lightroom, Digital Image Processing, Everything Owls, Four Keys to Making Great Images and Photographing the Night Sky.

Field trips are led by a mix of local experts and tour leaders from all parts of the world. Many of the trip leaders are also presenting on their areas of expertise throughout the event. Learn how to identify gulls, shorebirds, warblers and sparrows in workshops led by authorities who will help you take your skills to new levels. There is simplicity in joining the classroom presentations – an unlimited number of talks is included as part of the registration fee. Topics include owls, hummingbirds, Harpy Eagles, North Atlantic Right Whales, Florida's unique springs, water treatment wetlands, bats, bromeliads, migration, numerous sensational destinations and much more. Be sure to investigate the amazing trip leaders, speakers and photographers.

The free Exhibit Center is the heart of the Festival. Here you will find important traditions and activities, including bird lists from the field trips, afternoon socials and the silent auction. It's the perfect place to spend time after field trips and in between classroom presentations. Make sure to visit all of the vendors, who range from artists, crafters and photographers to book providers, sellers of clothing and outdoor equipment and conservation organizations. There are expert guides from a variety of international and domestic travel destinations. See the newest optics and photographic equipment from Swarovski, Carl Zeiss, Celestron, Kowa, Opticron, Panasonic, Canon and Tamron. Then visit the Hunt's Photo and Video booth and the Time and Optics booth to get the best deals for your purchases.

The free Arts and Exhibits Fair includes an art competition with entries judged on how well they express the natural environments and ecosystems of Florida. Artwork includes photography, painting, sculpture, wood, glass, graphics and mixed media. There is also a youth art competition. Vendors at tables in the Exhibits Fair will feature a delightful mixture of artistry, biology, photography and botany.

Hours for the Exhibit Center and the Exhibits Fair:

  • Wednesday, January 25, 2017 from 12:00pm - 6:00pm
  • Thursday, January 26, 2017 from 12:00pm - 6:00pm
  • Friday, January 27, 2017 from 12:00pm - 6:00pm
  • Saturday, January 28, 2017 from 10:00am - 4:00pm
Click here for a complete list of exhibitors.

Why was the Indian River Lagoon made a focus this year? Because it is a jewel of Florida's natural resources. Because its sheen is seriously tarnished and it needs help in highlighting its plight. Because it needs to remain a source of enjoyment for everyone for generations to come. The festival planning team is proud to present Captain Rodney Smith as the opening keynote speaker on Wednesday, Jan. 25. Storyteller, author, businessman, publisher, community leader, philanthropist and visionary, his loves are the waters of Florida.

A series of talks on Saturday, Jan. 28 will highlight the Indian River Lagoon (IRL). Led by Dr. Linda Walters, a panel of researchers from the University of Central Florida will introduce the amazing diversity that is found in the IRL with discussion on factors influencing the IRL, followed by a conversation on how restoration can improve the IRL. Hubbs Sea World Research Institute Research Scientist, Megan Stolen, will give a talk on the IRL bottled-nosed dolphins followed by a talk by Mike Coneen, Executive Director of the Anglers for Conservation. He will discuss what the IRL Adventure Paddling Team experienced while kayaking the entire 170 miles of the IRL.

The free "Hulalicious" Street Party will take place on Saturday night (Jan. 28) in the quaint atmosphere of historic Downtown Titusville. Live bluegrass musicians from the Penny Creek Band will set the mood. Indulge in an eclectic array of epicurean delights from more than 40 food trucks. Sample regional craft beers, meet local merchants and take advantage of a final opportunity to visit with Festival Exhibitors at the SCBWF Tent. Mingle, relax, have fun and share good times.

Everyone dreams of traveling to stimulating places! A unique aspect of the SCBWF is its marvelous collection of entrepreneurs who offer exhilarating escapades in far-away places. Have you ever thought about visiting Peru's Mayan ruins at Machu Picchu? Has the idea of staying in a refurbished U.S. Air Force radar tower in the jungles of Panama even crossed your mind? How about Africa, Antarctica, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, Cuba, Madagascar, Portugal or South Africa? Knowledgeable guides from these destinations and more are here with stunning visuals to tell you all about their experiences through twelve one-hour presentations on Travel and Adventure Sunday. Take your pick of exotic adventures and awesome accommodations galore. Don't miss this unique opportunity to learn about the very best adventure travel providers in the business.

In fact, for just $25, you can experience all that Travel and Adventure Sunday has to offer. Go to multiple presentations, join in the SCBWF birthday party celebration and attend the final keynote presentation by nature photographer John Moran, whose career as an artist and journalist spans more than 30 years. Combining superb photography with stirring commentary, John Moran's work is a deep meditation on water and this state's future. His exquisite speaking programs detail a photographer's search for the soul of Florida.

A full SCBWF registration is $85. That includes entrance to all afternoon socials and as many classroom presentations as you wish to attend from Wednesday, Jan. 25 through Sunday, Jan. 29. Field trips, keynote presentations, workshops and photography sessions are additional. One day registrations are $35 for Wednesday, Jan. 25, Thursday, Jan. 26, Friday, Jan. 27 and Saturday, Jan. 28. A one day registration for Sunday, Jan. 29 is $15. You must register for the Festival in order to participate in field trips, workshops, keynote presentations, classroom talks and photography sessions. The Exhibit Center and Arts and Exhibits Fair are free.

Sunday event is open to anyone who is either paying the $25 special price which includes the one day registration and a ticket for John Moran, OR anyone that has paid the full festival registration and a ticket to John Moran.

Sponsored in part by the Brevard County Board of County Commissioners through the Brevard Cultural Alliance and the Space Coast Office of Tourism.

Visit Space Coast
Brevard County
Brevard Cultural Alliance
Visit Florida
Dixie Crossroads
Brevard Nature Alliance