If you think nature walks and presentations on animal mating are "for the birds," you're absolutely right -- especially if you're talking about events at the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center, where nature enthusiasts visit to see all manner of flying creatures.
This Thursday, the Arizona Audubon continues its monthly "Birds & Beer" event at the Audubon Center.
Patrons can drink beer from Four Peaks Brewing Company, do some bird watching, and take in educational presentations like "Bird Sex." (Seriously.)
The presentation on Thursday, September 15 will be "Pollinator Prowess
" by Tucson graduate student Lane Butler. Butler, a landscape designer and sculptor, also helped build the Audubon Center's pollinator garden.
Valerie Ramos, development and marketing associate for Audubon Arizona, says the idea for "Birds & Beer" came about when Audubon Arizona was brainstorming ways to bring in young professionals. "We have a lot of programs we offer to small children, and then we have programs for older folks, like bird walks, but we didn't have anything for young professionals in the area," she says.
Someone suggested having an event with beer, and Four Peaks Brewing Company stepped in to sponsor the "Birds & Beer" events. Now, Ramos says, "People come out to learn a thing or two about Arizona wildlife and drink beer."
In addition to the presentations and beer, there's plenty more to see at the Audubon Center. "We've spotted up to 200 species of birds," Ramos says. "The habitat's attracted muskrats, beavers, and coyotes. The pollinator garden's expanded, so we have southwest monarch butterflies, which are rare, and hummingbirds."
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"Birds & Beer" takes place from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, September 15, at the Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center, 3131 S. Central Avenue. To RSVP for the event, call 602-468-6470 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.