Each year, May 14 is celebrated as International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD), an ideal date to go out and take part in the activity of bird watching.
Migrating birds are a worldwide sign of persistence and sacrifice, as they fly thousands of miles to live through the seasonal changes that occur along the year.
The paths taken by migrating birds tend to span several cities, states, and even countries, as there are birds that fly from pole to pole, such as is the case of the Artic tern.
International Migratory Bird Day in Wisconsin
Wisconsin is considered by the bird watching community as the hub for celebrating IMBD. The state is covered by two major migratory paths, where residents and tourists gather to witness the flight of several hundreds of bird species.
Over 400 species of birds have been seen to fly above the state of Wisconsin, including 11 endangered species and 13 threatened species.
In Wisconsin, there are several organizations that work towards raising awareness for endangered species of birds. The existence of birds of all kinds in the ecosystem is important since they play a major role in the food chain by eating bugs that may be considered pests. A study performed in Jamaica revealed that the existence of birds around coffee crops produced a significant increase in the occurrence of pests, increasing the per acre value of the farm.
Also, 2016 marks the 100th year after the Migratory Bird Treaty was signed, a document signed by the United States, Mexico, and Canada with the objective of protecting migratory birds that set their flight route above the territory of these countries.
According to Betsy Blakeslee, manager of Nature Conservancy’s Carpenter Ranch, birds are “built for survival and know how to extract from nature what they need, without really destroying anything in their habitat.” Carpenter Ranch is known to accommodate at least one hundred of different bird species.
“There is such a variety of habitat here and it’s bird migration time, so you will see new birds appearing every day,” said Tresa Moulton, a bird watching guide at Carpenter Ranch.
But pollution and deforestation have taken its toll on migratory birds. It is known that about 30 percent of Wisconsin’s bird species are undergoing a significant decline in numbers.
Another important organization for bird conservancy is Bird City Wisconsin, founded in 2010 with the aim of creating communities that yield better and healthier habitats for both people and birds.