Avian migration patterns tracked at Tygart Lake Lodge


 TAYLOR COUNTY—If you’re looking for a fun, educational event for the whole family, then look no further. Tygart Lake State Park invites you to come take part in an event focused on nature’s feathered friends.

After carrying out their breeding rituals, now is the time that birds take flight and head to warmer climates during their annual fall migration. And while some species will begin to make the move as early as mid-June, many songbirds don’t take flight until September. 

Fall migration is at its peak from mid-August until mid-October, but usually lasts until early January, bringing different species through the area.

According to the National Audubon Society, an expert in the field of birding, such a long migration season provides birders plenty of opportunities to witness the spectacle and joy of birds on the move.

To help track the migration of different birds, banding events are held.

To help residents learn a little more about the different kinds of birds, Tygart Lake State Park will be holding a bird banding weekend, this weekend, Saturday, September 26 and Sunday, September 27.

Join Master Birder, Certified Bird-Bander and Photographer Joey Herron for a unique, one-of-a-kind way to get up close and personal with avian species in the area, as he catches and bands breeds of migrating birds in West Virginia.

During the event, he will be teaching guests how to properly identify various species by sight and sound.

Herron will be not only catching but banding birds as they move through the area. Bird banding is the attachment of a small, individually numbered metal or plastic tag to the leg or wing of the bird, as a means to track each bird individually.

 These events help to give researchers a better idea of the patterns of bird species, aiding by keeping track of the movements of the bird throughout its life.

Herron and Tygart Lake State Park Naturalist Jacob Jackson invite the public to attend this free event, which typically draws in a crowd.

On Saturday, birdwatchers will be meeting from 8:00 a.m. until noon, and then again on Sunday from 8:00-11:00 a.m.

 Those interested in the event are asked to please meet at the Tygart Lake Lodge shortly before the start time each morning. Guests are asked to please maintain appropriate social distancing, and those wishing to enter the lodge will need to wear a mask.

 “Join Joey to take part in the observation and recording of various breeding and migratory birds. This is a great opportunity to see birds up close,” said Jackson. “This is one of our most popular weekends here at the park.”

For more information, please contact Jackson at 304-265-6148.

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