Thu | Nov 23, 2017

Thousands enjoy unique bird experiences throughout the Caribbean

Published:Sunday | July 9, 2017 | 12:00 AM
Festival attendees in St Martin paint bird feeders to bring home.
A birding trip to Jobos Bay Reserve in Puerto Rico.
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Thousands of people throughout the region had fun experiences with birds and nature in June during the Caribbean Endemic Bird Festival. Dozens of festival events took place on different islands to celebrate the birds that live only here.

Activities were held for preschool and primary students and adults and families. Bird talks were held on many islands to help people understand the unique birds that live only on specific islands or only in the region. Guided bird walks brought people of all ages out into nature to see these amazing birds first hand. For many, it was their first chance to get an up-close view of birds through binoculars or a scope.

Other activities were as diverse as the region itself. In the Dominican Republic, Ridgway's Hawk Day celebrated the endangered Ridgway's Hawk, which lives only on Hispaniola. In Trinidad, bird education was brought to the streets with a bird education stand at a local market. In Puerto Rico, a special training workshop gave teachers learning tools about birds to use in classes year-round. On St Martin, festival attendees planted coconut trees and painted bird feeders.

The Caribbean Endemic Bird Festival is one of the Caribbean's only regional events about birds and nature. It is organised by BirdsCaribbean each spring, and dozens of non-profits, schools, parks, and other organisations develop events in their communities.

Endemic birds those that live only on one island or within a small range are at special risk of extinction. The Caribbean is home to many endemic species, and many are already in danger.

For more information about the Caribbean Endemic Bird Festival, visit birdscaribbean.org or find BirdsCaribbean on Facebook.