Black oystercatcher
Black oystercatcher
Vaux's Swifts and blue sky before dusk as they enter their evening roost.
Vaux’s Swifts and blue sky before dusk as they enter their evening roost.
Great Grey Owl found in the high county of Yosemite National Park.
Great Grey Owl found in the high county of Yosemite National Park.

Tailored to locate your target species, these field trips can take us throughout northern California, including Yosemite NP, Point Reyes NS, all birding hot spots in between including Tuolumne, Mono, Alpine, Plumas, Lassen, Shasta and  Modoc counties. Other California locations can be added, based on the interests of the field trip participants. My California state life list is 500 species, 300 species to date for 2019, my Marin County life list is 351. Alameda County life list 310 species. This year 2019, United States life list is 770, my North American species count is 1078 species and finally my Central American life list is 589. Let me know what your species chase list is, and we’ll work out a plan to add those species to your life list.

There are 673 bird species recorded in California. The reason for this diversity of species is the diversity of habitat. Counted among the habitat choices from west to east are; pelagic, coastal sage-scrub, coastal wetlands, riparian valleys, grasslands, sage and chaparral of west facing foothill slopes, oak woodlands, mountain conifers (to 6600’), desert scrub on the eastern mountain slopes of the Sierra Nevada.

I have guided many birders doing their “Big Year” since year 2000 to 2014 year to date, or simply adding species in their life list. Contact me if you have a specialty bird you need to observe, I’m sure I can help. 

Livermore Hills where we search for Golden Eagles Old San Joaquin River/Mountain House Slough/Clifton Court Forebay

March 21, 2020
Leader: Rich Cimino,, 925-353-0266

Come along with birding guide Rich Cimino to explore the ponds, river,
channels, bay, grassland and agricultural fields of San Joaquin, Contra
Costa, and eastern Alameda counties all in one day! Pick up ducks, grebes,
swans, shorebirds, raptors and passerines for your county lists.
Pre-registration is not required, and all are welcome. Heavy rain cancels.
Bring a scope, lunch, drinks and a smile! Contact the leader with any

Meet at 9:00 AM at the Shell service station on Mountain House Parkway at
Schulte Road in Tracy, about 30 minutes east of Castro Valley. Take I-580
east, and at the 205 split, stay on I-580 south towards Los Angeles.
Shortly, take exit 67 – Mountain House Parkway/Patterson Pass Road – and
turn left at the end of the ramp to go back over the freeway on Mountain
House Parkway to Schulte Road. The Shell station (Subway, snacks, restrooms)
will be on your left ahead.  April 2018

> I have always wanted to go birding in Sierra Valley (north east California) but because it’s almost all private land I couldn’t figure out how it was done, even though there’s an abundance of eBird hotspots in the Valley. Participating in an organized trip there with Rich Cimino was the perfect way to see all the birding highlights in the area, including a herd of pronghorn with fawns! Rich knows exactly where to go to see the widest possible range of bird species – from white-faced ibis, sandhill cranes, American bittern, yellow-headed blackbirds, Lewis’ woodpeckers, sage thrashers, Brewer’s and vesper sparrows, and so much more. A side trip to Yuba Pass yielded evening grosbeaks, Cassin’s finch, and several species of flycatchers and warblers. Some of the best birding I’ve ever enjoyed! Recent Birders comments on Birding with | Yellowbilled Tours. Daphne August 2018


Hi Rich, Sally and I had a wonderful time birding with you. The snow in Big Trees State Park was magical, still need to see the White-headed Woodpecker. But seeing 5 California Condors were great life birds. Yosemite was another treat and seeing the American Dippers and the Cassin’s Vireo added to the trip list nicely. We hope to travel to Nome Alaska in 2019 with you.

Doug and Sally Crough Indiana

Testimonial –  July 2017

Hey Rich, I just went over our bird list for the day. I saw 24 life birds and added 13 birds to my list for the year! Thanks for sharing your birding knowledge with Susi and I. It was a fantastic trip!

Spade W. Mimi, Florida

February 7, 2017

I recently returned home from a three week road trip to the western states visiting many bird watching spots along the way. The most enjoyable and productive days by far were the ones that I spent with Rich in the SF Bay area. I had a lengthy list of target birds and amazingly we got them all in a few days. This was unexpected as several were not common birds. Rich brings not only knowledge but a passion and enthusiasm to the sport as if he were seeing some these rarer birds for the first time. Rich was very accommodating to all needs including the day my wife, who is not really a birder, was with us when we visited Marin County cultural and culinary locations between birding spots. I enjoyed the time spent with Rich and look forward to utilizing his skills in the future. I highly recommend.

John Pike, Houston, Tx.

Client Testimonial – January 2017

Rich Cimino led our small group of birders inland from the San Francisco Bay area and Point Reyes in Central California for two days. He started us off in grand fashion by getting us lingering looks at a couple of Ridgeway’s Rails.  He took us to several places that weren’t even on our radar and led us to many target birds much more quickly than we could have achieved on our own, if we’d found them at all, saving us much valuable time in the process.

When we told him we would be birding on our own in search of California Condors a few days later, he told us precisely where we could find them.  His directions were right on the mark and we found the birds effortlessly.  We probably would have missed them without his guidance.

In addition to being skillful with bird-finding, Rich is very personable and we thoroughly enjoyed his company. He has a deep knowledge of Central and Northern California that extends beyond birding expertise.

He gave us recommendations on restaurants that led us to excellent dining, and a fabulous bakery that got our mornings off to a great start.

The next time I’m in the area, I will certainly team up with Rich for more great birding.

Ron Morris – Winston-Salem, NC

November 14, 2016

Dear Rich,

The 100 Birds of the West of the Point Reyes Divide Trip (Nov.1, 2016) was a great day to remember. Your efforts to organize and lead the event by doing the grunt work were essential for a safe and successful journey and delivering the species. The weather gods help that combined with your friendly and knowledge of the Point Reyes National Seashore area made for a memorable day.

Brain Beard – San Anselmo, Ca.

July 12, 2016

My goal for the 2 days of birding in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California, I was aiming to add at least 3 birds to my life list – white headed woodpecker, Pacific slope flycatcher, and Pacific wren. We did that and added one additional hard earned species, the Bell’s sparrow and Ash-throated Flycatcher!! It was a great time! Rich did all the driving as I was able to enjoy the land scape and which for birds.

Elaine Vokoun ,Milwaukee, Wisconsin

A mutual friend put us in touch with Rich during our brief visit to California. Rich drove an hour to our hotel, arriving at 7:30 a.m., and off we went to a state park where he knew the spots we would see good birds – at least from the perspective of two Easterners. Without him, my husband and I would have seen a fair number of birds, but, in more than a few cases, would not have known what we were seeing or hearing. When we suggested we’d like to see some water birds as well, Rich knew where to go. We had a very successful day with Rich returning us to our hotel. Because we were unfamiliar with the area, my husband and I would have not known where the best birding spots were – plus we would have had to deal with unfamiliar roads, despite our GPS. Rich made our very birdy day enjoyable and stress free. Thank you, Rich.

YBT – 2016 testimonial single day



As soon as we learned we would be in the San Francisco area for a short visit, my husband and I (east coast natives) promptly booked a birding tour with Yellowbilled Tours and our guide, Rich Cimino. We were looking for a guide that knew the area intimately and would be able to add several birds to our life list. Rich’s experience and interest in our comfort made the trip a highlight of our time in northern California.

We were very specific on the time period we were available, and we did not have a car. Rich was extremely accommodating with all of our requests and carefully asked questions to narrow down the type of birding trip we wanted, customizing our trip. He picked us up at our hotel promptly in his large extremely clean vehicle, bringing a birding book and his own scope for our use. We drove to several different locations and viewed birds in all sorts of different habitats. Rich shared his experience with us and helped us locate the field marks for the different birds we were viewing. He brought us to precise spots to see specific birds which was really fun. His expertise, years of knowledge of the subject and clear love of the birds was evident. We were happy that he accommodated our desire to photograph the birds, and set his scope up at several different locations for a closer view as well. We added 21 birds to our life list and viewed at least 25 other species. Rich was an entertaining guide and extremely personable. On our drive back, he gave us the option to stop at a local winery for a quick break. What a fun ending to a great day of birding! We enjoyed every minute of the trip and will definitely book Yellowbilled Tours the next time we are in the area.

August 2014, Linda Larson, Oak Hill, VA

After many visits to Pt. Reyes,what a difference to visit with a good birding guide!  Had a thoroughly enjoyable,informative day.  Not only does Rich know the best spots, he’s up on what is currently around  and great for pointing out field marks I would otherwise miss.  A highlight of my trip to northern California

OCTOBER 2016, Bette Harig,  Sanabel Island , Fla.

Chasing California Rarities the Common  Cuckoo




Call 925-353-0266, or e mail

U.S.Mail address is:

60 Elizabeth Circle Greenbrae, Ca. 94904


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