Feature Article

Next Science on the Shore Event-Thursday February 24th, 2011 at 6:00 pm at NASA Wallops Visitor's Center.

February 16, 2011

The Nature Conservancy's Virginia Coast Reserve Director Steve Parker will present "Satellites and Shorebirds: Tracking Eastern Shore Whimbrels from Alaska to Brazil and Back Again” Admission is FREE so bring a friend and come enjoy an interesting and educational evening!

Background information shared by Mr. Parker:

"TNC has been working with the Center for Conservation Biology for several years on tagging and tracking shorebirds, particularly whimbrels which pass through here in great numbers in spring and fall to feed on salt marsh fiddler crabs, as these birds migrate from arctic breeding grounds to winter destinations in the Caribbean, Central and South America.

Because they are large birds, we are able to tag some with satellite transmitters that enable us to watch their movements continuously over the seasons; a couple of birds are in their second year of transmitting.

So the whimbrels, which depend on the unique habitats offered by Virginia’s Eastern Shore for their pan-hemispheric survival, link us with the North Slope of Alaska and Brazil. They also provide interesting links between the natural world and satellite technology and other high tech gizmos."