New York City, NY

Free NYC Birding Events This Saturday: International Migratory Bird Day

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Have you ever wondered why there are so many bird species in New York City? If you're walking down a city street, you may only notice the rock pigeons and finches. But if you step into a park, you will see cardinals, woodpeckers, bluejays, sparrows, and more. Find a body of water, and you will encounter geese, ducks and swans. Go deeper into the wooded areas of a large park like Central Park in Manhattan or Prospect Park in Brooklyn, and you will find even more varieties, including birds of prey.

Those common birds, easily spotted and recognized, still only represent a small portion of the bird population. Hundreds of bird species have been sighted here, and many of them are simply passing through. New York City is a great place for birds and birders because we are situated along the Atlantic Flyway, a major migratory route. In the United States, we celebrate International Migratory Bird Day on the second Saturday in May. This year, the date falls on May 14, 2022.

Here in New York City, you can celebrate by attending events held on Staten Island, in Prospect Park, and on Randall's Island. All events are free and kid-friendly.

Nature Activities at Audubon Center with Prospect Park Alliance

Described as an "essential stop-over location for migratory birds," Prospect Park is a great spot for bird watching. To celebrate Bird Day this year, the Prospect Park Alliance will host nature activities between 10am and 1pm. Attendees will learn about how the migratory birds are affected by both native plants as well as invasive species.

Bird-Themed Puppet Show on Staten Island

From 11am to 3pm on Saturday, the Clay Pit Ponds State Park Reserve will be hosting several performances of a new bird-themed puppet show to mark the occasion. Other activities include short guided birding hikes, activities, games, and crafts.

Birding Adventure on Randall's Island

For a free guided tour with an experienced birder, head over to Randall's Island at 2:30pm on Saturday. The program will teach attendees how to locate, identify and learn about birds. The park is hosting a "Birding Bonanza" throughout the day, beginning at 10am.

Want to learn more about birding in New York City? Central Park offers tours in the Ramble. The birding basics tour costs $35 per person. This Sunday's tour is already sold out, but there are more dates available in May. For a free option, Prospect Park provides birdwatching walks on Saturdays from 10am until noon.

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