May is American Wetlands month and as duck nesting season gets underway across North America, the United States and Canada will celebrate International Migratory Bird Day (IMBD) on Saturday. The annual event began in 1993.
IMBD is a conservation initiative that focuses awareness on conserving migratory birds and their habitats throughout the Western Hemisphere. The program is dedicated to international conservation efforts and environmental education in Canada, the United States, Mexico, Central and South America and the Caribbean.
This year’s IMBD theme is “Helping Birds Along the Way” and highlights resource-rich and strategically located stopover sites where birds may double their body weight as they acquire the food needed to fly across continents and oceans.
There are several ways to help migratory birds and support conservation. Join Ducks Unlimited or another conservation organization. Volunteer for organizations that preserve habitat and help birds. Restore natural habitat in your community and cultivate native plants that provide food, nest sites and cover for birds.
Officials said one of the best ways to support migratory birds and wetland conservation in the U.S. is to buy a Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp, commonly known as the federal duck stamp.
“There are many reasons to buy duck stamps,” said DU Chief Conservation Officer Paul Schmidt. “Hunters 16 years old and older must purchase a federal duck stamp each year to legally hunt migratory waterfowl in the United States. Visitors to national wildlife refuges buy the stamp each year to gain admission to some public lands. Birders and others buy the stamps to support bird conservation. Whatever your motivation for purchasing duck stamps, buy a couple of them each year to help make a difference for waterfowl and our sporting traditions.”
Visit www.birdday.org for more information about International Migratory Bird Day and Environment for the Americas.