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Spotlight: Join an International Migratory Bird Day Celebration

Spotlight: Join an International Migratory Bird Day Celebration

Understand why birds matter

Coastal Pelicans Brown pelicans at Cabrillo National Monument (Vickie Mathieu/Share the Experience)

What You’ll Find

Birds are just about everywhere! Nearly 47 million Americans over the age of 16 share a passion for observing birds as a recreational activity. Some are avid “birders” pursuing the sport of “birding” in exotic locations away from home, while some just enjoy “bird-watching” in their own backyard or neighborhood park. Birds are surprising to watch and listen to and their incredible diversity presents a fun challenge for identifying different species.

Are you interested in discovering what the fuss is about? Go birding this spring when birds migrate by the millions to learn more about birds and bird migrations.

Try This

Celebrate International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD), the signature program of Environment for the Americas that highlights the migration of nearly 350 species of birds between their nesting habitats in North America and their non-breeding grounds in the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Central and South America and the Caribbean. IMBD in the U.S. and Canada is officially the second Saturday in May each year, but is celebrated almost year-round, with most U.S. and Canada events taking place in April and May.

This year’s theme is “Why Birds Matter" and there are events around the nation for you to learn about the benefits of birds to humans and nature. Events vary from morning bird walks, to classroom programs, public presentations, bird counts, one-day events and multi-day festivals.

Getting There

Just about anywhere in North America there’s bound to be an area nearby for you to observe migrations within one of the four major flyways, the Pacific, Central, Mississippi and Atlantic.

Along the Pacific Flyway popular birding locations include:

Along the Central Flyway discover:

Along the Mississippi Flyway visit:

Along the Atlantic Flyway try:

Get Started

Attend one of many 2014 IMBD events and bird festivals throughout the country. To find an event near you visit the Birdday.org event page.

Did You Know?

Conservationists use migration flyways to study migrating birds. By knowing where major migration corridors and small routes meet, it is also possible to see where the most critical habitats are for migrating birds and to encourage strong conservation initiatives in those areas. For example, along the North America flyways, it is clear that Central America is critical for hundreds of thousands of migrating birds. Habitat conservation is essential to protect migrating birds.

Check out the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Migratory Bird Program’s video “Conserving America’s Birds” and learn more about their Migratory Bird Program.