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Volunteers sought for 2019 Delaware Bird-A-Thon

Migrating shorebirds are currently making their way to Delaware. And the Delaware Ornithological Society is looking for people to help track them during its annual Bird-A-Thon.



Bill Stewart is the past president of the Delaware Ornithological Society (DOS) and the founder of the Delaware Bird-A-Thon.  He also the chair of this year’s event.


“The Red Knots and other shorebirds migrate from the southern tip of South America, and they fly five to seven days non-stop and they have to land - they have to land in the Delaware Bay shores,” said Stewart.

He says it’s held each year throughout the First State to count as many of the estimated 27 species of migrating shorebirds that land here to feast on horseshoe crab eggs.

Stewart is seeking volunteers to help with this year’s count May 4 through 12, 2019.

He says the money raised will focus on expanding the Mispillion Harbor Reserve - just east of Milford.


“It started about 13 years ago. And it was an event that we use as a fundraiser to try and partner with other organizations or the State to acquire habitat for migratory shorebirds and other birds that use Delaware as their staging area,” said Stewart.

Stewart says the MispillionHarbor is a natural shorebird habitat where horseshoe crabs come ashore like clockwork and breed without interruption between the May and June full moons.

He says the shorebirds need the crab eggs for fuel to complete their journey to the Arctic Tundra to raise their young.

1,932 acres of critical habitat have been preserved through the Delaware Bird-A-Thon.

Kelli Steele has over 30 years of experience covering news in Delaware, Baltimore, Winchester, Virginia, Phoenix, Arizona and San Diego, California.
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