Get out your binoculars and hiking boots because this Saturday Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation is offering a look into the natural world and its happenings during this early spring day and night.
County Parks Naturalist Faye Stoner will be guiding two groups on the 27th. One will be the Birdwatching for Beginners at Independence Lake and the other will be taking part in the Almost the Worm Moon-An Early Spring Night Hike. Both will have the chance to see how the seasonal change brings out new wildlife and their customs.
Stoner says the birdwatching program can help those participants with little to no experience become more knowledgeable about birding. She says there are many physical details needed to be understood for the bird to be properly identified. And this will be one major aspect to this learning session.
"There are so many things to look for when trying to identify," Stoner says. "For example, a nuthatch is the only bird that will go down the trunk of a tree head first or that a heron will most likely be found in the water. Knowing identifiers like that makes birdwatching that much more enjoyable."
The day will begin at 9 a.m. at the Beach Center with a slide show. This will give the group a chance to learn the essentials so they can later go out into the park and begin putting things into practice. Stoner says bring binoculars if you can.
Later that evening at Park Lyndon-north lot at 7 p.m. a group of hikers will celebrate the arrival of the earth worm and other night time forest happenings. Stoner says the idea for the hike comes from the many traditions that celebrated the first spring full moon. She added that with spring comes a whole new amount of night activity in the fields, woods and swamps.
Hikers will be looking for such things as the distinctive woodcock and barred owl. And as Stoner puts it, "see the natural world turning into spring."
For more information and to contact Stoner call (734) 971-6337 ext. 334 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.