Skies Alive! Bird Migration in the Garden State
Ismael Calderon is the Director of Science at the Newark Museum and curator of ‘Skies Alive: Bird Migration in the Garden State.’
September 22, 2010 marked the first day of fall and the period of time when many birds began their migration. Shorter and cooler days trigger the birds’ internal biological clocks informing them that it is time to fly south where the weather is warmer and food more plentiful. Perhaps you have begun to see flocks of blackbirds feeding on berries to fuel up for their long and dangerous flights, or you have seen flocks of Canada geese in V-formation flight navigating their way south. These are tell-tale signs that fall migration is in full swing.
Birds pass through New Jersey as part of their migration along the Atlantic Flyway navigational route. During spring and fall migration, birds are challenged with light pollution, electric power wires, storms, habitat degradation and pollution, predators, climate change, to name a few obstacles. The Newark Museum’s interactive exhibit Skies Alive! Bird Migration in the Garden State explores the birds’ challenges, their biological adaptation and their navigational skills to negotiate their arduous flights.
On Saturday, October 9, the Newark Museum has dedicated an entire day to bird migration called, Skies Alive & Family Activities. The Museum’s Explorers—trained high school student educators—will lead visitors through hands-on activities and demonstrations on the importance of protecting our amazing feather friends. The event is an opportunity for discovery and to preserve New Jersey’s natural resources to ensure the survival of these transient and resident birds.
Learn more about the Newark Museum by visiting newarkmuseum.org.