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Valentine's Day will be for the birds at El Dorado Nature Center

February 11, 2009 | 12:11 pm

El Dorado Nature Center lake in Long Beach

Despite forecasts of rain, Valentine’s Day will be for the birds at El Dorado Nature Center in Long Beach.

On Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Audubon Society specialists will show visitors how to participate in the 2009 Great Backyard Bird Count, an annual nationwide event that last year recorded 9.8 million birds and 635 species across the nation.

"This is a time for the general public to be a part of a huge scientific research study," said center naturalist Meaghan O’Neill. "You don’t have to be an experienced birder. We’ll show people how to fill out checklists about what they’ve spotted at a local park, along their street and even in their own backyard."

"A participant might say, ‘I saw 10 crows in the backyard,' " she said. "That information will be forwarded to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and added to its data banks."

To participate in the project held nationally Feb. 13–16 by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and the Audubon Society, nature lovers of all ages are invited to bring their special someones to the center at 7550 E. Spring St. on Saturday.

For information about the bird survey, or to sign up, contact a center naturalist at (562) 570-4876, or visit www.birdsource.org. There is a $7 parking fee.

O’Neill would add that it is always a good idea to bring an umbrella.

-- Louis Sahagun

Photo:  El Dorado Nature Center lake in Long Beach. Credit: El Dorado Nature Center.

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