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Curious birders spread their wings at Guelph Bird Day

Families came to the University of Guelph Arboretum Centre on Saturday to participate in bird-oriented activities

Curiosity about birds can spark at any age and Guelph Bird Day introduced attendees to a world full of birds on Saturday.

Zivan Mehta is 20 months old and his parents brought him to Guelph Bird Day because he has started to learn about nature and likes birds.

Guelph Bird Day was hosted at the University of Guelph Arboretum Centre. It was celebrated in tandem with World Migratory Bird Day. 

Although Zivan is too young to understand the difference between birds, he can point out birds, rabbits, and other animals.

His mom Neha and dad Vikas showed him a bird skull on display and he was able to point out the eyes and head of the bird.

“We have a bird feeder and then every day, we will take him out in the backyard and we will put food for the bird,” said Neha.

When he sees a bird flapping its wings in the sky he points at it and gets excited, said Vikas.

The event had crafts for children, button-making, free bird seed and education provided by Wild Birds Unlimited, Nature Guelph, U of G Sustainability Office, U of G Biodiversity Inventory, and OPIRG Guelph.
Nancy King has always had an interest in birds but figured now is a better time than any to create a hobby out of it and become a birder.

She brought her binoculars and took a bird walk at the event. The tour took people through five different habitats. A list of 43 birds was tallied throughout the day to show how many different kinds of birds are flying in the Arboretum.

“I thought it'll be a nice day to come and look at birds and learn about these different organizations,” said King.

Wild Ontario brought a northern saw-whet owl and broad-winged hawk to the event. Seeing the birds up close was one of King’s favourite parts of the day.

“I've always really liked birds. I've never had taken the time to really explore that interest,” she said.

Trevor Bloemendal’s family has had an interest in birds since the pandemic. “It's kind of like Pokémon you got to find them all,” he said. In his backyard he has a standard bird feeder and a hummingbird feeder. 

He came to Guelph Bird Day to celebrate his father-in-law’s birthday, since he’s a birder. Bloemendal’s children have seen the birds from Wild Ontario plenty of times but the free bird seed and button-making is new to them for this event.

As frequent visitors of the Arboretum they are sure they will be back to find more birds.


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Santana Bellantoni

About the Author: Santana Bellantoni

Santana Bellantoni was born and raised in Canada’s capital, Ottawa. As a general assignment reporter for Guelph Today she is looking to discover the communities, citizens and quirks that make Guelph a vibrant city.
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