With more than 5,600 acres located near Shreve, Wayne County rests on the largest inland natural wetland complex in Ohio. For 12-plus years, the village has taken advantage of the location with the Shreve Spring Migration Sensation.
"I live in Shreve, and so it is one of those places that we think is extra special because it's unique," Wilderness Center naturalist Lynda Price said. "I just really think it helps educate the public about the marsh."
Price will hold a seminar about snakes of Ohio, with live snakes in the presentation during the annual event Saturday, March 16.
Fellow Wilderness Center naturalist Carrie Elvey will assist children at the dip netting station on Cemetery Road during the Sensation from 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
The Migration Sensation will have many new programs and special guests this year, said Bill Fought, who handles publicity for the event.
Most of the workshops will take place at Shreve Elementary School, while an additional seven help stations and observation areas are scattered near the village for people to see possibly 95 types of birds, with six that are rare to the area.
Five help stations in Shreve will have scopes and binoculars set up to get a better view of the wildlife. Experts will be on hand to help with identifications.
Fought said Ohio Certified volunteer naturalist Chuck Jakubchak will introduce a new workshop about species of birds and their offspring, titled Cute Chicks, to show how birds are related.
Husband-and-wife duo Kimberly and Kenn Kaufman will hold workshops about birding and bird flight, respectively. The pair has spoken at the Migration Sensation for many years, but Fought said Kenn Kaufman will present a new program that Migration Sensation attendees will be the first to hear.
The Akron Zoo will have live animals for a children-friendly show at 9:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. Fought said adding a family activities zone has brought more people to the event than just bird enthusiasts.
"I really love talking to the children and the adults and letting them know about the types of wildlife that are right near them, and how they can look for them and listen for them," Price said.
Along with the family activities zone and birders' market place, where vendors and experts will share their knowledge about wildlife and wetlands, specialists will be at Brown's Bog and Funk Bottoms.
Fought said Ashland University biology professor Dick Stoffer will be at Brown's Bog from 8 a.m.-noon to explain how the bog exists and point out native plants in the area.
The Funk Bottoms Help Station will feature Jason Tucker this year, who has tracked sandhill cranes for multiple seasons to learn about home ranges and habitat preferences.
Fought said it takes 80-100 volunteers to make the Migration Sensation go smoothly, with sponsors including the Ohio Department of Natural Resources Division of Wildlife, Friends of the Killbuck Marsh, Wilderness Center, Ohio Certified Volunteer Naturals, Greater Mohican Audubon Society, Triway Local Schools, Shreve Library and the Shreve Business and Community Association.
Contact Abby Armbruster at 330-287-1632 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her on Twitter @abbyarmbruster.