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Parks and Recreation

Bird Information, Research, and Data Program

Bird Information Research and Data (B.I.R.D.) is a year-round program for bird conservation,habitat protection and education made possible by dedicated staff, volunteers, and partners- including Metro Parks, Warner Park Nature Center, and Friends of Warner Parks.

orange and black Baltimore Oriole bird

What does banding tell us about migration? Much of the knowledge comes in bits, eventually forming a mosaic of where birds of a given species travel. Banding proves that birds often return to precisely the same place to nest each year, and more recently it has shown that some exhibit the same fidelity to their wintering sites in the tropics.
– Scott Weidensaul, Living On The Wind

Birds in the News

Many scientific journals are sharing information now supporting a 29% decline in bird populations in the last 50 years due to human causes. Check out these reads as well as our spot on NewsChannel 5 Nashville.

BIRD Top 10 Accomplishments in 2019

The BIRD team manages SEVERAL projects in Warner Park. Check out a list of some of our greatest achievements this year!

Top 10 of 2019

A Little Break in Banding

Fall banding is over with impressive numbers and varied species. Our winter schedule (January and February) will be released soon.

Leave Out a Hummingbird Feeder This Winter

Rufous Hummingbird

That's right! While our summer resident and fall migrating hummingbirds have departed for the winter to warmer climates, at least 7 species of hummingbirds have been known to spend the winter here in Tennessee; some consistently year after year.

Tennessee has wintering hummingbirds! Until fairly recently, conventional wisdom held that any hummingbirds seen in Tennessee during the winter months must be vagrants, thrown off course during a storm, and unable to survive the winter. Thanks to banding efforts, we have learned that at least 7 species have been known to winter here and some return year after year to the same area.

Want to see a wintering hummingbird? Have 1 feeder available! We recommend maintaining at least one hummingbird feeder during the winter. Leave your feeder in a spot that is readily visible and be sure to regularly clean and refill the feeder with one part sugar to four parts water mixture. If the temperature drops below 27 degrees Fahrenheit, you can bring the feeder in for the night so it doesn't freeze. But remember to place it back outside first thing in the morning when hummingbirds normally feed.

What to do if you have a winter hummingbird: If you see a hummingbird at your feeder between November 15 through March 15, please contact certified Master Bander Cyndi Routledge at routledges@bellsouth.net. Cyndi will ask permission to come to your home to band and release the bird to help advance our understanding of winter hummingbirds in this area. To learn more, Southeastern Avian Research.

Important Bird Area

bright red bird with black wings and tail feathers held in a hand

Important Bird Area (IBA) is a global effort to identify and conserve areas that are vital to birds and biodiversity and is directed by BirdLife International and coordinated in the Americas by National Audubon Society.

These areas are key sites for conservation- small enough to be conserved in the entirety and often already part of a protected- area network. In Tennessee, this program is coordinated by the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency (TWRA).

Learn more about the Warner Park Important Bird Area

Protecting the Birds in Warner Parks

warbler bird

Thoreau said that the bluebird carries the sky on his back. You can help the bluebirds, hummingbirds, and warblers to continue to soar by donating to the BIRD program through Friends of Warner Parks. Give a CHIRP to provide funds for bird banding, research, and educational programs. Don't forget to check out the numerous bird-related programs offered at the Nature Center throughout the year.