Peregrine Falcon photo by Derek Zaraza
The fifth Toronto Bird Celebration
By Andrés Jiménez Monge, Urban Program Coordinator, Birds Canada
“When the second and third wave of the pandemic appeared, I thought spring migration would turn into a repeat of the previous year,” said Toronto birder John Nishikawa, “but I was proven wrong. Thanks to the many individuals who shared their knowledge and expertise; the support of the Ontario Government, clubs, organizations, and companies at the local, provincial, and national level; and the technology that allowed public access to webinars and Zoom meetings, a new kind of Toronto Bird Celebration was created. The Toronto Bird Celebration … attracted interest from people around the province, the continent, and the world. Sometimes great things arise from chaos and the COVID-19 pandemic is no different.”
Dawn chorus event
I wish with that you could read all the testimonials like John’s I received from close to 1000 participants. They shared that they were happy, connected, and engaged with birds thanks to the Toronto Bird Celebration. Why? Here are just some of the highlights they enjoyed:
- Three events and a powerful panel about birding with a disability that reached at least 55 participants with disabilities.
- A peaceful Virtual Dawn Chorus in partnership with High Park Nature Centre and Songbirding Podcast host Rob Porter.
- Eighteen CREATIVE events presented by dedicated partners: the Toronto Region and Conservation Authority, Toronto Zoo, Toronto Ornithological Club, Ontario Field Ornithologists, High Park Nature Centre, West Willowdale Neighbourhood Association, Edithvale-Yonge Community Association, Shadowland Theatre, Planet in Focus International Film Festival, Toronto SUP, University of Toronto, and York University.
- A new “Quest for the Celebirdies” social media contest that recognized and promoted what can be seen in the city.
- A presenter lineup that mirrored the diversity of Toronto in terms of its topics and presenters.
Physically-distanced “paddlebirding” in Toronto Photo: @onlyonephoenixx
We at Birds Canada are overflowing with gratitude. Without you and without the involvement of all partners, participants, and sponsors, the Celebration would not have been able to flourish. The results were remarkable! We reached 5000 participants through more than 35 events during the month of May, and 25% of participants were new to birding! I would like to invite you to connect with the bird champion sponsors that helped this be a reality: TD Friends for the Environment Foundation, Acart Communications, Armstrong Bird Food, and Pattison Outdoor.
With your continued support during the Toronto Bird Celebration in 2022, we will have a chance to flock together at in-person and virtual events that celebrate community and birds. We want every single bird event in the city to join in! If you’re planning a bird event or would like to organize one, please reach out and we can work together.
Toronto Bird Celebration ad on the TTC Photo: twitter.com/pattisonoutdoor
Pileated Woodpecker photo by Missy Mandel
The tenth Vancouver Bird Celebration
By Alyx Coulter, Outreach Coordinator, Stanley Park Ecology Society
Vancouver Bird Celebration (formerly Vancouver Bird Week) was a huge success in 2021, with over 2500 participants exploring their love of birds through 26 interactive programs. To kick things off, panelists Adam Dhalla, Julie Lebel, Charlene George, and June Hunter wove together stories of their work and experiences in art, technology, language, and movement, exploring how birds can spark the imagination and inspire. Thank you so much to everyone who joined the conversation, spotted celebirdies around town, and shared your love of birds at this year’s event. Sending our thanks and appreciation to our sponsors for making this event possible: City of Vancouver – Greenest City, Pattison Outdoor, Armstrong Bird Food, and Acart Communications.