LoveBirdsFinalThroughout February, The North Carolina Arboretum is celebrating everything from the love of birds to lovebirds. From the Great Backyard Bird Count and adult education classes about our feathered friends to a special Valentine’s brunch and wedding planning, we have great ideas for things to do every day of the month.

Great Backyard Bird Count

Launched in 1998 by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and National Audubon Society, the Great Backyard Bird Count was the first online citizen-science project to collect data on wild birds and to display results in near real-time. Since then, more than 100,000 people of all ages and walks of life have joined the four-day count each February to create an annual snapshot of the distribution and abundance of birds.

This year’s Great Backyard Bird Count officially runs February 17-20, but the Arboretum will get an early start on this national event with its own Great Backyard Bird Count event on February 11, 2017, from 8 a.m.-12 noon. Join Arboretum educators for a morning full of birding hikes, hands-on activities, a live raptor demonstration and bird crafts.

Also, participants in the Arboretum’s ecoEXPLORE youth education program who submit three “shares” during ornithology season will receive an invitation to a special ecoEXPLORER-only program during the Great Backyard Bird Count day and will receive free parking at the Arboretum for the entire event.Tufted Titmouse

Of course, birding is an activity you can enjoy every day of February and throughout the year.

Adult Education Classes

Whether you are new to birding, looking to hone your skills or considering how to attract more birds to your yard, the Arboretum’s Adult Education program offers a wide range of bird-related natural history classes throughout the year. The February offerings include Winter Birding on February 8 and Build Your Own Bluebird Box on February 23. Space is limited for each class, so register soon if you are interested.

Valentine’s Gifts

Are you looking for that perfect gift for Valentine’s Day? Stop by the Connections Gallery Gift Shop for the perfect card or nature-inspired gift for your special someone.

Wedding Planning

Valentine’s Day is also one of the most popular times of the year for marriage proposals, so if you are newly engaged – or if you know someone else preparing to tie the knot, check out the Arboretum’s beautiful gardens, grounds and facilities as possible venues for both weddings and receptions. The Arboretum has become a very popular wedding location, and we recommend booking 12-15 months ahead of the big day.

Red-breasted Nuthatch

Whether you are a lovebird or simply love birds, we hope you find a way to enjoy every day of February!