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Press Release

U.S. Department of the Interior
U.S. Geological Survey
National Wetlands Research Center
700 Cajundome Blvd.
Lafayette, LA 70506

Contact: Gabrielle Boudreaux Bodin
Phone: 337-266-8655
Fax: 337-266-8541
For Release: May 1, 2002

Learn to Bird at Acadiana Migratory Bird Day

Have you ever wondered what that winged flash of color was at your backyard bird feeder? Or taken out-of-town friends to Lake Martin and not been able to identify any of the wading birds you've seen? Or been awakened on a spring morning by the melodious music of a songbird you could not name?

Then the seventh annual Acadiana Migratory Bird Day celebration is for you. This year's event will be held at the Acadiana Park Nature Station, E. Alexander Street, Lafayette, La., on Saturday, May 11, from 8 a.m. to noon.

The free event is for beginning bird watchers, families who would like to begin a rewarding hobby together (suggested for interested children 9 years and older) or anyone interested in learning more about the incredible diversity of birds in south Louisiana. Children 13 years and younger must be accompanied by an adult.

Birding experts will be on hand from the event sponsors: U.S. Geological Survey's National Wetlands Research Center, U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Acadiana Park Nature Station and Wild Birds Unlimited. Participants will receive a free 2002 International Migratory Bird Day Poster and a CD with color photographs, songs and range maps for hundreds of North American birds.

Parking for the event is available at the entrance to the Acadiana Park Campground. Check in is at the registration table for activity locations. Participants need to bring binoculars and a bird field guide if possible. Long pants to protect against poison ivy, sunscreen and insect repellant are suggested.

View pictures of Migratoy Bird Day 2002 Poster winners.

The schedule for May 11 is:

6:30 a.m. - 7:30 a.m.
- Coffee in the canopy for early birds. Listen to the dawn chorus while experienced birders help you identify the birds you hear.

8 a.m.
- "How to Bird Watch" Bird Walk: Learn identification techniques and observe tools researchers use to study and band birds.

9:15 a.m.
- Binoculars and spotting scopes: how to choose and use, presented by Wild Birds Unlimited.

10 a.m.
- "How to Bird Watch" Bird Walk

8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
- Birds Alive: Enjoy a closer look at a wood duck or a Canada goose gosling and learn what makes a bird a bird.

8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
- Video presentations "Wings Over the Wetlands" and "Snow Geese in Peril"

8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.
- Demonstration of interactive bird-watching CD
- Receive a free copy.

For more information or to register for this event, call Bill Vermillion at the U. S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 337-291-3133 or Susan Horton at the National Wetlands Research Center, 337-266-8655.

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