Thursday, June 3, 2010

Birds of a Feather: We're a Great Spot for Birding!

You’ve probably seen bright and whimsical birds if you’ve ever been hiking or biking at The North Carolina Arboretum, strolling through the gardens, or watching nature from the rocking chairs near the Savory Thyme Café.

But did you know that we’re an official birding site of the North Carolina Birding Trail?

We’re host to countless and diverse bird species, which is what helped us become part of the Birding Trail. People from across the country – some even from across the globe – visit the Arboretum's 434 acres to catch a glimpse of the birds that visit our campus.

This spring the male goldfinches have their bright yellow color back, and have been a prominent feature at the bird feeders.

On a short stroll through the core gardens you’re likely to see Northern Mockingbirds perched high atop trees, Brown Thrashers and Eastern Towhees rooting for insects below shrubs and amongst flowers, and the occasional Northern Cardinal, Song Sparrow and Chipping Sparrow singing loudly.

Along our trails many of our woodland warblers have returned, according to K-12 Academic Coordinator Jonathan Marchal. So far he’s heard Hooded Warblers, Ovenbirds and Northern Parula.

The NC Birding Trail provides a database of sightings and ways to submit your own sightings, which can be an exciting and relaxing recreational activity. Through its work, the Birding Trail connects birders and bird watching sites like the Arboretum with communities, businesses and other local historical and educational organizations.

Bird watching is an engaging activity during every season at the Arboretum! In fact, photographer Michael Oppenheim captured this image in late fall – can you guess what kind of bird it is?

Send your guess by July 8 to and enter a chance to win a free Day Pass from The North Carolina Arboretum!

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