On Saturday May 23rd approximately 60 visitors and 20 volunteers joined us to celebrate International Migratory Bird Day and Biodiversity Day. The event was called fittingly called, “Wild about Wings and Wetlands” as guests had the opportunity to see up close the many species of colourful migrating birds that travel though our community, dip for species of aquatic spring insects in the ponds, and walk the berm around the wetland.
118 individual birds of 29 different species were banded by Marsh bander Chris Sukha who then passed birds on to School of Flock students and other trained volunteers to show our guests. Guests where shown how to safely hold a bird, learned about bird Identification and then released the bird back into the marsh habitat. Banding demonstrations were also held and people had the chance to learn the science behind banding.
Meanwhile at the ponds volunteers dressed in chest waders entertained children at the ponds by scooping up aquatic creatures. Those wearing rubber boots joined right in! We were fortunate to have bug expert Andrew Miller drop in to identify the many aquatic species living at the marsh.
BBQ Hotdogs and sausages donated by Giant Tiger were enjoyed by many as they stopped to rest and chat about the birds and other wild life they had spotted and to top the event off a lucky guest won an owl themed attendance draw- it was a hoot!
We would like to especially thank all of our volunteers and bird crew for the day. For it is volunteers that allow us to host events that share the research that is happening at the Hilliardton Marsh with so many people.