National Bird Day and Migratory Bird Day
Date When Celebrated : Bird Day is always May 4th
National Bird Day is celebrated on January 5th
International Migratory Bird Day observed on the second Saturday in May
People love birds. Bird watching is a favorite pastime of millions of people. It is the most popular of hobbies, and can be enjoyed by everyone regardless of age. With this popularity, it comes as no surprise that there is more than one day established to recognize, appreciate, and enjoy birds. We suggest you celebrate all of these days.
Now, lets’s help to take some of the confusion around a number of distinctly different “bird” days:
Bird Day is the oldest of the days set aside to recognize birds. According to the U.S. Library of Congress, Bird Day was first observed on May 4, 1894. It was started by Charles Almanzo Babcock, superintendent of schools in Oil City, Pennsylvania. By 1910, Bird Day was widely celebrated, often in conjunction with Arbor Day. Bird Day and Arbor Day events are focused upon conservation training and awareness.
National Bird Day was established by bird activists. It calls upon people to recognize the plight of captive birds. It also draws attention to exploitation of birds in the U.S. pet industry. On this day, organizers suggest we reflect upon the conditions of birds held in captivity.
Note: Our research did not find any documentation that this is a “National” day, which requires an act of congress.
International Migratory Bird Day celebrates the incredible journey that migratory birds take each year. They travel thousands of miles between breeding grounds in North America, and their winter homes in Central and South America. Organizers say this is a day to both support, and to increase awareness of conservation efforts in support of migratory birds. They also suggest a field trip into a woods to look for and enjoy migrating birds.
On each of these Bird Days, we encourage you to take a few minutes to watch and observe birds, as well as to feed them.