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Sussex County Birding and Nature Festival
Release Date: June 04, 2012

The seventh annual Sussex County Birding and Nature Festival will be held on June 9th and 10th, 2012 at the Sussex County Fairgrounds.

Sussex County Annual Birding and Nature Festival

The seventh annual Sussex County Birding and Nature Festival will be held on June 9th and 10th, 2012 at the Sussex County Fairgrounds (see www.njstatefair.org external link for directions). All field trips seeking flying creatures will take off from this location. Whether you love birds, butterflies, dragonflies or nature in general, this is an event you'll want to check out. There are ten half day field trips (pick a morning, afternoon or both). We have expert trip leaders who will help enrich your knowledge of Sussex County, NJ's Greenest County! These trips will visit many of our State and Federal parklands. If a shorter introduction to nature is more to your liking, there will be hour long nature walks on a rail trail at the Fairgrounds; there will be two of these trips on Saturday and Sunday mornings and two on Saturday afternoon with leaders to point out interesting species found along the trail. Free nature related kid activities will be offered by educators from the NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife/Pequest Trout Hatchery all weekend! To top off the Festival, join us for our special Sunday luncheon keynote speaker, Bill Boyle, well known author of Bird Finding in New Jersey. Bill's presentation, "Rare Birds in New Jersey: Then and Now" will focus on some rare birds that have become more common, and some formerly common species that are now hard to find. Pre-registration is required for the luncheon which will be catered by Krave. The festival will also have a free Marketplace for people to visit all weekend to learn about green opportunities in northern New Jersey. The Marketplace hours are 9-5 Saturday and 9-3 on Sunday.

Early June is a great time to get outside and find nesting birds that call our forests and grasslands home. This will include warblers, vireos, tanagers, grosbeaks, grassland sparrows (including savannah, grasshopper and vesper) bobolink, towhees and flycatchers. With the warmth of upcoming summer, the butterflies and dragonflies should be abundant. Did you know that Sussex County has more dragonfly species than any other county in the United States? You will be fascinated with up close looks at these amazing winged wonders during festival trips. One of our partners, The Nature Conservancy (www.tnc.org external link), will be leading a canoe trip to their Mashipacong Bog Preserve which will be good for both birds and dragonflies. Another Festival partner, the NJ Audubon Society (www.njaudubon.org external link) will be visiting some of our farms to highlight the cooperative relationship between farmers and the environment. Other partners include the Sussex County Fairgrounds (www.njstatefair.org external link), the Sussex County Bird Club (www.sussexcountybirdclub.org external link) and the Sussex County Board of Agriculture (www.sussexcountyboardofagriculture.org external link). This Festival is a great opportunity to enjoy a diversity of species in a small geographical area. Bring binoculars and cameras and prepare to be wowed by the natural beauty Sussex County has to offer. Registration is easy - on line, regular mail or at the event (cash or check day of event).

Questions on this press release - dtraylor@sussex.nj.us

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