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World Migratory Bird Day 2024

Welcome to World Migratory Bird Day 2024! This year's theme is "Protect Insects, Protect Birds."


Why Are Insects So Important? 

Insects are the unsung heroes of the ecosystem. They provide an essential food source for migratory birds, who rely on them to fuel their long journeys. In fact, many bird species time their migrations to coincide with the peak abundance of insects along their route. This delicate balance between insects and migratory birds is crucial for the birds' survival and reproduction. Unfortunately, insect populations are declining at an alarming rate, posing a threat to migratory birds and their habitats.  

The Link Between Insects and Birds 

Many migratory birds have specialized dietary needs that heavily rely on insects. Take the Common Yellowthroat, for example, an insectivore that feasts on grasshoppers, beetles, and caterpillars. This bird migrates to regions abundant with these insects where there is enough food to sustain their young. Hummingbirds, such as the Broad-tailed Hummingbird, are renowned for their preference for nectar but also catch thousands of insects daily to supplement their diets. Aerial insectivores are among the most threatened groups, with many species experiencing significant declines in recent years. This emphasizes the intricate connection between migratory birds and insects, highlighting the importance of protecting these essential food sources. 

How You Can Help 

To protect both insects and migratory birds, consider these conservation practices: 

  • Plant native species: Native plants provide food and habitat for insects, which in turn support birds. Convert part of your lawn to native gardens to create a more bird-friendly environment. 
  • Avoid pesticides and herbicides: These chemicals can harm insects and disrupt the food web, affecting bird populations. 
  • Leave natural habitats undisturbed: Allow fallen leaves to decompose and create natural foraging opportunities for insects and birds. 

As we celebrate World Migratory Bird Day 2024, it's important to recognize the critical link between insects and migratory birds. The cicada emergence this year serves as a timely reminder of the intricate connections within nature, offering a feast for wild birds. Be sure to check out our latest blog to learn more about this fascinating phenomenon! 

You can support migratory birds during their journeys by creating a bird-friendly space in your backyard. A key step is setting up bird feeders, to provide a consistent food source during migration. Check out our "Attracting Birds" guide on PROJECT WILDBIRD® for tips on choosing the right feeder, selecting bird food, and maintaining a clean feeding environment!

Join us in celebrating the beauty of migratory birds and the role insects play in sustaining them.