Birds, paddling, and photography -- with some history and nature tossed in -- are all part of the 15th Annual Wings Over Water Wildlife Festival that's running for the rest of the week along the Outer Banks of North Carolina, including Cape Hatteras and Cape Lookout national seashores.
Birding trips range from those geared toward beginners to experts who are searching for a life-list species. There are more than 400 species that can be found on the Outer Banks, of which more than a quarter of a million acres is in conservation in Dare County alone, according to U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service officials. And for those hankering to add pelagic species to their lists, two pelagic trips are being offered this year.
Guided birding trips are scheduled for locations on Cape Hatteras National Seashore, Roanoke Island, and Cape Lookout National Seashore, although a good many of these trips already are full.
The region offers some of the country's best paddling for canoe and kayak enthusiasts. From tannin-fed cypress swamps to endless marsh mazes, it is possible to paddle the region for a lifetime yet still study charts at night, discovering unexplored areas.
Nature treks and trips that revolve around history -- such as the Lost Colony -- also are on the agenda.
Check out the festival's homepage to see what activities are scheduled and which ones still have space remaining.