Onn Sunday the 18th we celebrated International Migratory Bird Day at the Elkhorn Slough National Estuarine Research Reserve.

In preparation for the event Carlos and I were able to do some redecorating in the Visitor Center. We put up a lot of different pictures of birds on the wall; I tried picking pictures of birds that we see in the area so that visitors might be familiar with some of them. We also put up a big poster about migration, explaining what migration is and why certain animals migrate.

For the IMBD event I also decided to make something fun: bird cutouts so people could put their faces on a bird’s body. The birds I decided to make were an American Avocet, Anna’s Hummingbird, and a Mallard because they are birds that are often seen at the Elkhorn Slough Reserve.

Our supervisor Amanda A. also printed out information on “Why Birds Matter” and information about migratory birds in general that was available for visitors to take with them.

For the event we had coloring for younger children and paper-bag Heron puppets for older children.

Carlos and I also led a bilingual walk in the morning. We had 10 people on our walk, and it was pretty fun showing people the beauty of the Elkhorn Slough Reserve. It was really neat seeing how excited the two kids on the tour were as they were walking through the reserve. I think it was a good reminder that a lot of kids already have an interest in the outdoors and that we, as interns, can provide more opportunities for them to interact with the outdoors

That day we also had open lab so visitors could look at feathers and benthic invertebrates under the microscopes, which is something that is usually not available to the public but mostly to school groups. The people who I observed at the lab seemed to really enjoy and seemed to be fascinated by what they saw under the microscope.

Overall it was a good event. It was a preview of what it would be like to give walks all of the time. I feel like I still have a lot of information to learn about the reserve so I can adequately answers  questions from visitors.

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