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Want to Make Some Fine Feathered Friends This May? Come Bird-Watching at Rutgers University- Newark

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Media Welcome To Join Free Early-Morning Bird Walks Beginning May 7

Airplanes aren’t the only air traffic crowding the skies over Newark; 141 species of nature’s frequent fliers have been spotted winging it overhead (a few of the species banded and released are pictured below). If you want to learn about them, come to Rutgers University-Newark, any Wednesday morning in May at 7:45 a.m.

That’s when Dr. Claus Holzapfel, an ecologist with the Rutgers Department of Biological Sciences, is once again leading free public bird walks at Rutgers University-Newark. His mission: to seek out the wild birds who call Newark their transient home. “We are in the middle of an important North American bird migratory route, the Atlantic flyway, and our little piece of urban nature attracts new avian surprises almost every morning,” he explains. Every Wednesday in May bird-watchers armed with binoculars can meet Holzapfel at 7:45 a.m. on the Norman Samuels Plaza in front of Boyden Hall, 195 University Ave., for the hour-long guided walks. “Most days we will also be able to observe bird banding demonstrations,” he notes.

Exactly what brings wild winged creatures to this urban center?

Although the campus is located in an urban environment where there aren’t many trees, explains Holzapfel, the campus itself offers many green spots covered with trees, bushes and shrubs , so the campus stands out to watchful birds. “They see the green spots, and they zoom in and land here… birds are sneaking around the trees and shrubs in desperate search of food… that allows a good chance of seeing them here.”

For more information on the bird-watching walks, please contact Holzapfel at 973/353-5385 or visit the website: http://runewarkbiology.rutgers.edu/Holzapfel Lab/Main Pages/BirdsOnCampus/Birds on Campus.htm

For directions and maps:  http://www.newark.rutgers.edu/maps/.