The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center invite the public celebrate the 26th Annual Migratory Bird Day, Saturday, May 18, 2019, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. This annual commemoration highlights the spectacular journeys that migratory birds take each year as they travel between nesting and non-breeding sites around the world.
Corps park rangers will host a free, family-friendly, accessible event at The Dalles Dam Visitor Center. To take full advantage of the event, visitors are encouraged to bring their own scopes, binoculars, GPS units and cameras.
Live Bird presentation, 10 a.m.: A raptor handler from The Columbia Gorge Discovery Center will be on site to talk about bird conservation.
Self-guided activities, ongoing until 3 p.m.:
- High-Tech Scavenger Hunt: Come learn about bird conservation and why birds are important to local ecosystems. Bring your own GPS unit or borrow one of ours (ID required).
- Bird Bingo: Explore the variety of bird life in our backyard.
- Kids crafts
This year’s theme, “Protect birds: Be the solution to plastic pollution,” raises awareness about a critical issue in bird conservation. Since plastic was introduced in the 1950s, an estimated 8.3 billion metric tons have been created. Only about 9% of plastic materials are recycled, leaving more than 6.3 billion metric tons of plastics in landfills or polluting the environment. Plastics harm birds in marine environments, as well as other habitats.
As human use of plastics grows, so too does the amount of plastic pollution that invades most ecosystems around the globe. It’s been estimated that 80% of sea and shorebirds have consumed foam, pellets, thread, and other items. In addition, small bits of plastic, known as microplastics, pose a hazard to birds and smaller organisms throughout the food chain due to the toxins they concentrate in the environment.
The Dalles Dam Visitor Center is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday through Sunday, between May 1 and Memorial Day weekend. After Memorial Day, the center begins daily operations, seven days a week through Labor Day weekend. Labor Day through the end of September, weekend only operations resume. There are no entrance fees for the visitor center.
To get to The Dalles Dam Visitor Center from Interstate 84, take 87 and travel east on Brett Clodfelter Way. For more information, contact The Dalles Lock & Dam Ranger Office at 541-506-8475, visit www.nwp.usace.army.mil/Locations/Columbia-River/The-Dalles/, or check out the event on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/events/2304988552915201/