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April 29, 2013

Soar Into Spring at the Derby Hill Bird Festival

COUNTING ON SPRING - Hundreds of participants attend the annual spring hawk migration at the Derby Hill Bird Observatory in Mexico. Join in the celebration this season with the Onondaga Audubon Society's Bird Festival from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 11. A full day of family fun includes a live raptor presentation, nature walks, kids' activities, food, raffles, and a silent auction. Admission and parking are free.

MEXICO - Come to Derby Hill Bird Observatory on Saturday, May 11 for a full day of family fun! From 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., enjoy live hawk identification, birding and nature walks, kids' activities and much more at the park on Sage Creek Drive, just off Route 104B in the town of Mexico. Admission and parking are free.

The Onondaga Audubon Society hosts the festival which features Westy's Birds of Prey Show. Rick West will talk about the fascinating world of raptors as he exhibits his winged friends, including hawks, falcons and owls. Added star performers such as eagles, vultures and other wild birds will grace the skies overhead.

A silent auction will feature birding and other items. Vendors will offer native plants, artwork and hand-crafted jewelry for sale. Drawings will take place throughout the day along with kids' face painting, and Chomppers' Smokin' Barbeque will provide refreshments.

The festival is sponsored by the Oswego Elks Lodge #271; Tara Animal Hospital, Oswego; Wild Birds Unlimited, Fayetteville; Pathfinder Bank, Oswego; Johnston's Propane Service, Fulton; K-9 Grooming and Pet Motel, Oswego; Tesoriero Chiropractic Office, PC, Oswego; Hannibal Village Market (IGA); Ontario Orchards, Oswego; DBA Wild Bird Center, Manlius; Canale's Italian Cuisine, (Oswego and Liverpool); Bardan Construction, Oswego; R.J. Caruso Tax and Accounting, Oswego; Heath Asphalt Paving, Hannibal; Kambuyu Marimba Ensemble, Syracuse; Furdi's Homes, Fulton; Jack McNerney Chevrolet, Tully; and The Oswego Tea Company, Oswego.

Derby Hill Bird Observatory is a designated New York State "Important Bird Area." Its strategic location at the southeast corner of Lake Ontario makes it an excellent site for viewing the spring hawk migration and observing other migrating raptors and birds. It is not unusual to see upwards of 2,000 raptors in a day in mid-April. In the spring of 1995, a world record 19,531 red-tailed hawks were counted at the park; 4,591 of these occurred on April 11.

For more information about the festival, Derby Hill Bird Observatory, or the Onondaga Audubon Society, visit www.onondagaaudubon.com.

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