Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Birding at Ruthven Park

I took the girls and my parents to Ruthven Park this morning for a lovely morning of birding.  This place is wonderful for birding enthusiast, or anyone who enjoys nature or history!  It was our first time there, and we all loved it.  My friend had mentioned it to me in the spring after she had taken a few trips there with her kids.  It's my dad's birthday today and he loves birds so I thought it would make for a nice little birthday surprise.  He really enjoyed it and we all look forward to returning soon.

I had seen on their website that the bird banding lab is open on Wednesday mornings in the summer, so the timing was perfect.  The lab is basically run by volunteers and some research students.  Everyone was so welcoming and friendly.  They let us tag along as they collected birds from the nets and then we observed the process of tracking and banding them back in the lab.  Everyone was great at answering all our questions and letting us be a part of this amazing experience.  We even got to hold a few birds and release them after being banded.  The girls just loved it. 

The park is situated on a beautiful piece of land right next the Grand River.  We all agreed that next time we will bring a picnic and take a tour of the Mansion.  There are lots of trails to hike, too. 
One of the first birds we saw up close - a hummingbird.  
Collecting a bird from the nets.
Those bags each contain a bird.  They hang there until it's their turn to be banded.
This little gold finch is being measured.
Little L gets to release the gold finch.  She did such a great job!

Little V gets a turn, too.  She released a warbler.

Such a special morning.  If you live in the area, I highly recommend a trip to Ruthven Park this summer!

Happy Birthday, Dad!!!

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