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'Best time of year’: Why now is a good time for Manitobans to go birdwatching

For those who are looking to get outside this weekend, it’s one of the best times of the year to go birdwatching.

According to Paula Grieef, resident naturalist at Oak Hammock Marsh, this weekend and next are traditionally the best weekends of the year to get out to and see as many different kinds of birds as possible.

She added you don’t have to go much further than your own backyard or a local park to see lots of birds.

“I love it this time of year [to go to] Assiniboine Park in the English Garden,” she said in an interview with CTV Morning Live on Friday.

“There are all kinds of sparrows and warblers and all kinds of birds moving through.”

Grieef said there are a number of reasons people enjoy looking at birds, whether it’s to see their colours or the joy of trying to identify them. She added that birds are also a good indicator of what’s going on in the environment.

“If birds are not doing well then our environment is not doing well, and there are a lot of concerns,” she said.

“So World Migratory Bird Day allows us to celebrate birds, make people aware of birds and how important they are to everyone.”

Grieef explained that migration begins in March for the raptors, eagles, and hawks.

Then at some point in April, the waterfowl start coming back. In May, Manitobans will start to see sparrows.

“[Thursday] was a fantastic day, so many things came back, because we had rain and north winds for so long that kind of held them up,” Grieef said.

“The start of the warblers are coming. It is just the best time of year.”

World Migratory Bird Day takes place on Saturday.

- With files from CTV’s Rachel Lagace. Top Stories

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