GRAND ISLE, LA — The Grand Isle Community Development Team, Town of Grand Isle, The Louisiana Nature Conservancy and Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary Program will host the 15th annual Grand Isle Migratory Bird Celebration April 19-21, 2013, at various locations on Grand Isle.
“This is an exciting time of year for the island. Grand Isle is one of the best places in the world to see migrating birds that stop here to rest after their long trip across the Gulf of Mexico,” said Grand Isle Mayor David Camardelle. “During the Migratory Bird Celebration, residents open their backyards to both the birds and birdwatchers who come to see the variety of species.”
See songbirds in oak-hackberry woods, shorebirds and waders on beaches and in the marshes and raptors overhead. Grand Isle is an essential stop for songbirds during their spring and fall migrations across the Gulf of Mexico. The celebration is held annually to correspond with peak bird migration in April. Last year, 162 different bird species were identified during the three-day event.
Highlights of this year’s event include a lunch-time presentation on Saturday by nature photographer C.C. Lockwood and daily, expert-led bird watching tours on the Grand Isle Birding Trail, Elmer’s Island and the Grand Isle State Park. Visitors can watch the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries catch migrating songbirds for weighing and measuring before release in Lafitte Woods Preserve and later tour the new LDWF Fisheries Research Lab.
Kayak tours through the island’s mangroves and boat tours to pelican-rookery Queen Bess Island will also be offered as well as walking tours of the island’s historical homes. There will be a free art show at the Grand Isle Library and bird games, prizes and activities for the whole family.
This Annual Celebration Event, initiated in 1998, was created in part to support the purchase and management of the Grand Isle Sanctuary to protect some of the last remaining undeveloped chenier habitats (live oak ridges).
For a complete schedule of events, directions and more, visit http://grandisle.btnep.org.