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Local Migratory Bird Day events to run May 6-15

By Staff | Apr 22, 2016

The Potomac Valley Audubon Society (PVAS) has put together a special series of bird walks and other events during the second week of May to mark the 24rd annual observance of International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD).

The IMBD is an international program that aims to promote greater understanding and appreciation of the importance of migratory birds in North, Central and South America. It was initiated in 1993 by the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center. This year’s IMBD theme is “Spread Your Wings for Bird Conservation.”

All the PVAS events will be free, and anyone with an interest is invited to participate. Pre-registration is required for a May 14-15 Birdathon event; it is encouraged but not required for all the other daytime events. No pre-registration is needed for a May 11 evening lecture. To register for events and get directions and other details go to the PVAS website at www.potomacaudubon.org.

For each trip, participants should dress for the weather, wear comfortable walking shoes and bring drinking water and insect repellent. Binoculars will be provided if needed except at a May 15 bird walk at the Eidolon Nature Preserve. For additional information about specific events contact the individuals mentioned in the event descriptions or Krista Hawley at adultprograms@ potomacaudubon.org or 703-303-1026.

The schedule of events follows below.

Friday, May 6: Bird walk in the Murphy’s Farm section of the Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. Meet at 7 a.m. at the Park’s Visitor’s Center. For more info contact trip leader Deb Hale at 304-535-1528 or debhale72@gmail.com.

Saturday, May 7: Introduction to birding for beginning birders. To be held in Martinsburg’s War Memorial Park. Meet Debbie Maiorano at 8:00 a.m. at the Park’s McKee Pavilion. She will provide an overview of the subject and then lead a walk through the park. For more info contact Debbie at 540-535-5145 or debbie mm58@aol.com.

Sunday, May 8: Mother’s Day bird walk along the Final Attack Trail section of the Antietam National Battlefield. Cosponsored by the Washington County Bird Club. Meet walk leader Sandy Sagalkin at 7:30 a.m. at the Burnside Bridge. Intended especially for families with childen. For more info contact Sandy at 240-291-6465 or sandy.sagalkiin @gmail.com.

Monday, May 9: Bird walk in the Virginius Island section of the Harpers Ferry National Historical Park. Meet walk leaders Carol Del Colle and Lynne Wiseman at 7:30 a.m. in the parking area on Shenandoah Street. For more info contact Lynn at 304-676-2725.

Tuesday, May 10: Bird walk at the Stauffer’s Marsh Nature Preserve in Berkeley County’s Back Creek Valley. Meet walk leader Steve Hartman at 8 a.m. in the parking area at the north end of the marsh.

Wednesday, May 11: Bird Walk at the Shannondale Springs Wildlife Management Area on the east bank of the Shenandoah River in Jefferson County. Meet walk leader Jim Farley at 7:30 a.m. at the boat launch site off Mission Road. For more info contact Jim at 540-686-2056 or jamesfarley@ frontiernet.net.

Wednesday, May 11: PVAS evening program at the Hospice of the Panhandle Facility at 330 Hospice Lane, Kearneysville. 7 p.m. in the main meeting room of the Main Office Building. The program will feature a presentation about Purple Martins.

Thursday, May 12: Bird walk at Sideling Hill in Washington County, Maryland. Cosponsored by the Washington County Bird Club. Meet trip leader Sandy Sagalkin at 7 a.m. in the upper parking lot of the Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration, 18306 Col. Henry K. Douglas Drive, Hagerstown (off Route 65, just south of I-70). For more info go to the PVAS website or contact Sandy.

Friday, May 13: Visit to a successful Purple Martin colony in the Charles Town area. To be led by veteran birder Joette Borzik. Starts at 7:30 a.m. For more info go to the PVAS website or contact Joette at pep4223@comcast.net or


Saturday and Sunday, May 14-15: Seventh Annual Ruth Ann Dean Memorial Birdathon. Teams and individuals will compete to identify the highest numbers of bird species they find in the area within any 24-consecutive-hour-period during the weekend. Free and open to anyone who is interested, but all must pre-register. Those who participate are encouraged to seek pledges from neighbors, family and friends to help raise funds to improve wild bird habitat at PVAS’s Stauffer’s Marsh Nature Preserve. For more info contact event coordinator Sandy Sagalkin.

Sunday, May 15: Bird Walk at the Eidolon Nature Preserve in Morgan County. To be let by local birders Jon Boone and Janet Ardem. A good opportunity to see the rare Cerulean Warbler, which nests here. Meet at the preserve at 7:30 a.m. For more info, contact the Nature Niche store in Berkeley Springs at 304-258-0992 or natureniche@earthlink.net.