Bird Fest 2015

A Celebration of International Migratory Bird Day at the National Zoo

Bird Fest 2015 celebrates the springtime return of millions of birds that spend winters in Latin America and the Caribbean. It also provides a fun and exciting venue for zoo visitors to learn about birds and what we can all do to help conserve them. Held in honor of International Migratory Bird Day, the theme of this year's event is "Restore Habitat, Restore Birds."

Presentation and Book Signing

When: Thursday, May 7
Where: Zoo's Visitor Center Auditorium
Who: Doug Tallamy, professor of entomology
Get the details

Family Festival

When: Saturday, May 9
Where: Zoo's Bird House
What: up-close encounters with live birds, interactive displays, games and crafts for kids, bird-banding demonstrations, and talks by the zoo's bird keepers
Get the details

Bird Fest 2015 is jointly organized by the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center and Friends of the National Zoo. Partners include the US Fish and Wildlife Service and Environment for the Americas.

IMBD Poster for 2015

Presentation and book-signing

On Thursday, May 7 in the Zoo's Visitor Center Auditorium, there will be an evening presentation and book-signing by Dr. Doug Tallamy, professor of entomology and wildlife ecology at the University of Delaware and author of Bringing Nature Home.

Using fascinating examples from his research on food webs and the relationships between plants and animals, Dr. Tallamy makes a compelling and powerful case for why using native plants in our yards and gardens is a key to restoring our dwindling biodiversity. By choosing native plants, anyone with access to a patch of earth, no matter how small, can contribute to conserving birds and other wildlife and to maintaining healthy ecosystems.

Come as early as 6:00 p.m. to browse in the National Zoo bookstore, meet the author and staff of the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, and enjoy refreshments and a cash bar. The presentation begins at 7:00 p.m.

More information about Dr. Tallamy and his book can be found at: and and a New York Times Op-Ed

Bringing Nature Home

Family Festival:

On Saturday, May 9 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., the Bird Fest 2015 family festival will feature up-close encounters with live birds, interactive displays by organizations dedicated to bird conservation and appreciation, games and crafts for kids, bird-banding demonstrations by zoo scientists, and talks by the zoo's bird keepers. There will be something for everyone, so bring the whole flock! The festival will take place in and around the zoo's "Bird House". It is free and open to the public.

FONZ and Migratory Bird Club members are invited to come early from 9:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. for exclusive bird banding demonstrations and guided bird walks with Migratory Bird Center scientists and other zoo staff.

Organizations participating in this year's festival include the US Fish and Wildlife Service, Raptor Conservancy of Virginia, National Audubon Society, DC Audubon Society, City Wildlife, Department of Defense Partners in Flight, and the DC Dept. of the Environment.