Enjoy Free Family Festive Fun With Bay Bird Bingo!

Enjoy Free Family Festive Fun With Bay Bird Bingo!

Free family fun can be found around glorious Morecambe Bay this winter, thanks to a newly created game challenge - Bay Bird Bingo!

The Morecambe Bay Partnership is encouraging families to start the New Year as they mean to go on, by heading to one of 13 different locations around its gigantic natural ‘seafood bar’, to spot some of the 210,000 birds that the Bay supports.

With the help of a new Birds of the Bay leaflet, available from local tourism leaflet racks or downloadable here, you can spot 10 iconic birds from the 50+ species that love to tuck in to the rich diet of crustaceans, sandworms and small fish to be found on the shimmering sands of stunning Morecambe Bay.

If you work out when the tide times are, by visiting www.tidetimes.org.uk and position yourself at a suitable location, two hours before or after high tide, you can see their colouring, note their eccentricities and hear their individual calls.

Many call Bay Bird Bingo a great stress-buster, with all observation done in the fresh and salty-yet-invigorating air around the Bay.  Others find it amazing family fun, as children seek to identify which bird they are looking at and get a huge sense of accomplishment when ticking it off their list!

Birds to look out for include the ‘bicycling’ sanderling, running across the sands as if pedalling, and the eider – the world’s fastest flying duck, reaching speeds of 55mph when in flight.  But then there’s the striking oystercatcher, often to be seen chiselling into cockles and mussels, and the turnstone, avidly turning over stones to find insects to feed upon.

Look up to the skies and you may see flocks of thousands of knot, twisting and turning in a glorious ‘murmuration’.  Cast the eyes downwards and you could be looking at a ringed plover, nesting in the sand or shingle.   Take pictures from a respectful distance, to share on social media tagging in @BirdsoftheBay, and you can see what other families spot too!

Out and about, at various bird sites, will be super-helpful Morecambe Bay Natural Ambassadors - volunteers dressed in a blue fleece and with binoculars that can help you watch the incredible birds more closely.  Natural Ambassadors are also a mine of information when it comes to bird facts, so if you do spot a Natural Ambassador, don’t miss the opportunity to add to the information on the Bay Bird Bingo leaflet.

Morecambe Bay is one of the top three sites in the UK for wintering waders and wildfowl, so take the chance to discover how fascinating these species can be this festive season.  Arm yourself with the leaflet, enjoy a free day out and celebrate all of the wonderful birds with their individual personalities, markings and quirks!