Education Corner: Fall Migration
With Fall sneaking up on us, we are going to start seeing earlier sunsets and cooler temperatures. With this comes the inevitable migration of birds from their summer breeding grounds to their winter feeding grounds. In South Carolina, we enjoy the luxury of having fall migrants linger as they enjoy the perks of our slightly warmer climate. Fall migration can actually start as early as July for some shorebirds or those who had no luck finding a mate and can continue as late as mid-December for some birds.
Birds migrate both during the day and at night. Birds that rely on thermals to soar will migrate during the day because the heat of the sun is required to create a thermal, whereas birds that do a lot of flapping will fly during darker hours. Migration is extremely important to avian communities as it prevents them from depleting their food sources and allows them to take advantage of booming insect populations.
If you are interested in attracting some fall migrants to your yard, keep your bird feeders filled with a variety of high quality bird seed and keep fresh water available!