01 March 2018

Nest big thing: new bird garden unveiled at VanDusen Botanical Garden

Vancouver Park Board
News Release
March 1, 2018
There’s a new destination for birds and birders in Vancouver!
Officially opened today at VanDusen Botanical Garden, the Backyard Bird Garden offers an enhanced habitat for resident and migratory birds.
“The Backyard Bird Garden demonstrates how anyone with a yard or balcony can create habitat for birds with the right selection of plants and shrubs to provide food, shelter and nesting habitat,” said Park Board Chair Stuart Mackinnon.
More than 85 bird species have been recorded at VanDusen Garden.
Sure to bring the birds flocking, colourful nectar-rich perennials such as anise hyssop will be a source of food for hummingbirds, goldfinches, and other small birds native to North America. Deciduous trees such as vine maple grow well in containers, and provide food and open branches for perching. Evergreen shrubs such as salal offer cover and a safe place to nest.
The new garden was a collaborative effort developed and funded in partnership with the Vancouver Botanical Gardens Association, a charitable organization which jointly manages VanDusen Botanical Garden and Bloedel Conservatory with the Vancouver Park Board. 
An anonymous gift of $10,000 from a private donor was used towards constructing a child-sized birdhouse in the Backyard Bird Garden.
To celebrate the opening, up to two children get in free with each paid adult, senior or youth between March 1-29 at both VanDusen Botanical Garden and Bloedel Conservatory. 
Family friendly bird walks, talks and activities—free with admission—will be hosted on weekends in March at VanDusen.
At drop in workshops Saturdays from 10 am to 2:30 pm, children can join VBGA Education staff to investigate bird nests and predict which birds built them, explore the functions of feathers, and learn how to preen like a bird.
Any day of the week young birders can enjoy the Junior Birder Challenge while exploring the garden and receive a junior birder button upon completion.
A bird themed spring break camp “Citizen Science: The Birds in your Backyard” takes place Friday, March 23. More information at vandusengarden.org
The Backyard Bird Garden will be a highlight for visitors and their families during the Vancouver International Bird Festival and 27th International Ornithological Congress, both held in Vancouver August 19-26, 2018.
The Backyard Bird Garden supports the VancouverBird Strategy and ParkBoard’s Biodiversity Strategy.
Media contact:
Vancouver Park Board
Twitter: @ParkBoard
Instagram: @VanParkBoard

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