Bird-watching at the Celery Fields in Sarasota County
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More than 10 years ago the Sarasota Audubon Society began conducting bird surveys at the Celery Fields - a large plot of land totaling more than 400 acres east of Interstate 75 used at a flood mitigation zone by Sarasota County.
Since then, more than 200 species have been recorded in the area, including winter-loving birds like sparrows, Marsh and Sedge Wrens, and various rail birds, as well as breeding birds including Black-necked Stilts, King Rail, Least Bittern, Limpkin, Purple Gallinule, Barn Owl and more.
Celery Fields, Sarasota Audubon HQ
The Celery Fields is a bird-watching and recreation paradise, and also the future home of the Sarasota Audubon Visitor & Nature Center, an eco-friendly building with bird and butterfly gardens to serve the Sarasota Audubon Society's mission to provide environmental education, protect imperiled species, and promote a love of nature.
The Bird Naturalist program is one of the ways the Sarasota Audubon Society educates both residents and visitors at the Celery Fields. Between every day 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., Nov. 1 through May 1, a bird naturalist with a high-powered telescope is availabe on the southern boardwalk.
Protected Habitats a Good For All
"Our goal is to help visitors at the Celery Fields not only enjoy the great diversity of birds and wildlife here, but also to better understand that protecting sensitive habitat improves the quality of life for all of us," says Jeanne Dubi, President of the Sarasota Audubon Society.
The Sarasota Audubon Society also features bird-watching events weekly at various locations throughout the county. The group recently held its first annual Bird-a-Thon Saturday, Nov. 9, where teams competed to see who could identify the most bird species in 60 minutes. Participants learned from Audubon experts about bird identification and wildlife preservation at the event. Watch our video below. For more information about the Celery Fields and a calendar of events, visit SarasotaAudubon.org.