The Katy Prairie Conservancy (KPC) invites community members from the greater Houston area to come out to the Katy Prairie on Sept. 6 to participate in World Shorebirds Day, an international count day for sandpipers and their relatives.
Katy Prairie Conservancy officials and volunteers will conduct counts of wetlands on the Indiangrass Preserve starting at KPC’s Field Office at approximately 4 p.m. and then proceed to another property to see shorebirds and remain there until dusk (approximately 7:45 p.m.). Anyone who wishes to participate in the count and learn about fall shorebirds on the Katy Prairie is welcome. Additionally, there will be other birds to be observed and included in the overall count, along with other animals.
The Global Shorebird Counting Program is one of the key events of the World Shorebirds Day on Sept. 6, an effort to raise awareness about the importance of regular bird monitoring/counting as the core element of protection of bird populations and habitat conservation.
According to the World Shorebirds website, saving birds is impossible without knowing the actual number of individuals of a bird species living in the world. Population figures should not be guesses but based on countings carried out by thousands of volunteers and professionals worldwide. The result is an accurate population figure and trend, which is one of the fundamental elements to assess the legal protection status of any species.
Participants are required to sign a release when they arrive (or print and sign it in advance). You can find an Adults Only release and Adults + Children release on the KPC website. Directions to the Katy Prairie Conservancy Field Office can be found on our directions page. Leaders for this event are Bob Honig and Steve Gast, members of KPC’s Stewardship Committee.
Please arrive at the Field Office between 3:30 and 4 p.m. in order to sign in before we begin counting. Come prepared to stand or walk for two to three hours under the weather conditions on that day (you can bring a folding chair if you like). Bring water, and wear appropriate footwear and comfortable clothing for strong sun and possibly mosquitos. Participants may be walking up to one mile (but no farther) at the most distant location during the bird census.
The Katy Prairie Conservancy is a nonprofit land trust dedicated to preserving an ecologically vital tallgrass prairie and associated wetlands area on Houston’s far west side for the enjoyment and benefit of all. You can find us on the web at katyprairie.org and on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @katyprairie.