Bird Migration

One of the great mysteries of the Nature world is Bird Migration. Twice a year, these amazing creatures travel sometimes thousands of miles and often have a very difficult flight, only to return again four to six months later. Some of them traveling as far south as the tip of South America to as far north as the Arctic. Birds that migrate do so because they require a warmer climate in winter and a cooler climate in summer, than those that remain in the same place all year round. Just imagine, a creature that weights only four ounces and makes a trip of three thousand miles or more every four to six months!

The timing of when birds begin to travel depends on the species. Some leave as soon as their young are old enough to feed themselves. Others leave when the days become shorter and the weather turns colder. Many times birds fly at night using the moon and stars to guide them. Others who travel by day use landmarks and the sun to guide their way.

One of the best places to watch birds migrate is along a beach, or out on a boat, or on a mountain ridge.  When it is a foggy night, you can hear the migrating birds chirping to each other so they stay together. Be sure to carry a field guide with you so you will be able to identify the birds.

Sometimes a pair of binoculars may come in handy!

Watch in your area which birds migrate and which ones remain. Make a list and a sketch in your Nature Journal of these findings.