Buzzards find winter home in South Georgia - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Buzzards find winter home in South Georgia

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January 20, 2005

Cook County - They're the most frequent visitors to Reed Bingham State Park. "During this time of year we get thousands from all over North America and Canada too," said Chet Powell, Park Ranger.

During the winter months, it's rare to find a single tree along the Little River that's not covered with buzzards. "They've roosted and lived on this water as long as anyone can remember," said Powell.

And each year they seem to multiply. Eighty-three year old L.B. Moore grew up at the park, and remembers watching the birds more than 70 years ago. "That was about 1930," said Moore. "I remember seeing them out there in the swamp and as babies on the ground."

The birds also find winter homes in Florida and other parts of South Georgia, but this park seems to be their favorite. "There's lots of food around, they like the trees here, sometimes they'll even return to the same trees every year," said Powell.

And after spending dozens of winters here, they've become one of the park's most treasured species. There's even a festival this weekend to teach people more about the birds. "It's a day of educational and recreational activities," said Powell. "They'll learn a lot of interesting things about vultures they haven't known before."

There will be all kinds of bird shows and pontoon boat rides along the river where you can get an up-close look at the buzzards. The activities start at 9:00 Saturday morning.

posted at 3:30 P.M. by ashley.harper@walb.com