A spring migration speeds up; those of us who are committed to bird feeding have the chance to see new species. Many of the migrants are insect eaters, but they will happily eat suet and you may also see them flitting around in the branches of newly leafing trees looking for food. Others will stop by your bird feeders or pick up sunflower hearts and chips that have spilled on the ground.
It is an exciting time of year for all of us who count birding as one of our favorite hobbies. All over the country there are special events taking place to enhance your birding experiences and provide you with the opportunity to meet others who love birds as much as you do.
There are even Birding Festivals in Alaska
Each year new Birding Festivals come on line. They happen all over the U.S. in a wide variety of habitats. You don’t have to worry that you may not be skilled enough to participate. These are ‘beginner friendly’ events where leaders, as well as other participants are eager to share their knowledge and experience with those with less experience. There will be field trips, keynote speakers, social gatherings, vendors and exhibitors. Most are held over weekends.
Some that you might want to check out include; the Festival of Birds in Detroit Lakes, MN on May 18-21; the Great Salt Lake Bird in Salt Lake, UT on May 18-22; the Acadia Birding Festival in Bar Harbor, ME on June 1-4; the Down East Spring Birding Festival Near Calais, ME on May 27-29; the Potholes & Prairie Birding Festival June 14 to Jun 18 in Carrington, ND.
Some others that have already taken place but you might want to put on your list for a future year are; Audubon’s Nebraska Crane Festival in Kearney, NE in March; the Feather Fest, held in Galveon, Texas in early April; or Godwit Days in Arcata, CA in mid-April. And there are Festivals held in the winter months as well – most in warmer climates, but some in northern regions where you will see species that come down from the Arctic each winter.
You could set up a road trip going from one Festival to the next if you really whttps://prdseed.com/store/products/suet/anted to. The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is an excellent resource for locating these events.
Bird banding is sometimes a part of the Festivals.
If you’re not able to make it to a Festival this year, I know you will find the show happening in your own yard to be fulfilling and mesmerizing at times. Keep your feeders filled with an assortment of bird seed and you will not be disappointed.
By Kate Crowley