The Smith-Gilbert Gardens, 2382 Pine Mountain Road in Kennesaw, will hold its fourth annual hummingbird banding event Aug. 23 from 8 to 11 a.m., hosted by “Hummingbird Whisperer” Julia Elliott from Bird Watcher Supply Company.
Elliott received her federal Master Permit to band hummingbirds in 2010. She is one of only about 150 persons from across the U.S. and Canada authorized to band the tiny birds.
The process of banding, recapture and recovery provides valuable information about bird history, especially migratory details and the relative abundance of a given bird species from year to year. When a bird is banded, the bander collects important data about the bird’s age, sex, condition and plumage characteristics.
Eliot will use three trainer traps set in the perennial border to capture the ruby-throated hummingbirds that populate this area.
“The banding process is not only an important tool in bird research, it’s fascinating to watch,” said Kennesaw Mayor Mark Mathews. “It’s incredible that the birds are so calm, they will sit in the palm of your hand before flying off.”
Other activities will also be featured.
Monteen McCord, a bird rehabilitator who specializes in caring for birds of prey, will have a hawk and owl with her. SGG Bird Watcher Pat Pepper will identify birds most commonly seen on the property. Jackie Belwood, a Biology teacher at Georgia Highlands, will be sharing information about all types of pollinators.
Children will be invited to make hummingbird craft projects in the Gather ‘n’ Grow vegetable garden. Plants that attract hummingbirds will be available for purchase in the plant sale area and the gift shop is stocking bird-related gifts, feeders, note cards, identification guides and much more. Guests can also purchase a breakfast to-go at the food table.
For more information, call (770) 919-0248 or visit smithgilbertgardens.com.