Texas Birding Classic adds to dates, categories for annual tournament

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Annual birding tournament adds to categories in 2013

The 17th annual Great Texas Birding Classic is back, with the registration deadline set for April 1.

The birding tournament, which has been a week-long event for 16 years along the Texas Gulf Coast, is going statewide and will last a month — from April 15 to May 15. The new format will allow participants to compete in more than one of the 42 categories and choose what days they wish to participate based on weather and personal schedules.

Team fees have been lowered from previous years, as well, making participation easier and more economical.

The Texas Parks and Wildlife Department oversees this friendly annual birding competition that raises funds for Texas conservation projects. Since the inception of the Great Texas Birding Classic in 1997, adult teams that recorded the most bird species in various categories have directed $789,500 in grants to avian habitat conservation.

Habitat conservation grants, which this year will be awarded to projects anywhere in Texas, are funded through event sponsorship and registration fees. This year’s event sponsors include Toyota, as well as a new awards ceremony sponsor, Audubon Texas.

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