UGA Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant will host its annual Spring Celebration event at the UGA Aquarium on May 11, from 12:30 – 4:30 p.m.
This year, the event will take place on World Migratory Bird Day and will feature family-friendly activities designed to educate participants about migratory birds that visit the Georgia coast.
“There is an incredible diversity of birds visiting our coast in spring. Several species are listed as threatened or critically endangered, so we want to educate coastal residents and visitors about ways they can help protect our feathered friends and the coastal habitats they rely on,” says Kayla Clark, public programs coordinator for Marine Extension and Georgia Sea Grant.
Georgia’s coast is an important stopover site for birds embarking on their spring migration. Red knots, for example, stop on the Georgia coast to rest and feed on horseshoe crab eggs that fuel their annual flight to nesting grounds in the Arctic.
In an effort to engage participants in bird conservation, marine educators at the UGA Aquarium will use activities from the Project Flying WILD education curriculum, sponsored in Georgia by the Department of Natural Resources, Wildlife Resources Division. A migratory bird obstacle course, for example, will help participants understand the types of challenges birds face along their migratory journeys. Binocular lessons and hands-on activities focused on preventing plastic pollution will also be provided.
Educators interested in learning more about Project Flying WILD are invited to attend a special teacher workshop at the aquarium from 8-11 a.m. before Spring Celebration. Registration for the workshop is required. More information is available at https://t.uga.edu/4WB
In addition to educational activities, Orphaned Bird Care, a local bird rehabilitation organization, will have resources and information about where to take injured birds and how to get involved in other bird-related activities on the coast.
All Spring Celebration activities are included with general aquarium admission, which is accepted by cash or check.