DuPont Nature Center Hosts Eco-Festival

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The DuPont Nature Center at Mispillion Harbor Reserve, a DNREC Division of Fish and Wildlife facility, will host “Peace, Love & Horseshoe Crabs,” its fourth annual festival celebrating the spring spectacle of migrating shorebirds and spawning horseshoe crabs, from 10 am to 4 pm on Saturday, May 18 at the center.

This admission free festivities will feature children’s games, live music, crafts and vendors, food and a variety of fun and educational activities for everyone. For the kids, a series of Estuary Eco‐Challenge stations will be set up on the grounds, with topics including Birding 101; shorebird banding; a live touch tank; Horseshoe Crab Part Smarts; Blue Blood, Great Bait, & Other Gifts Horseshoe Crabs Give to Man; Fins, Scales & Fish Tales; and Plastic Voyages, about how trash in the water and along our beaches can harm aquatic species.

“Peace, Love, and Horseshoe Crabs was created in 2010 to celebrate the phenomenon of spawning horseshoe crabs and migratory shorebirds during the peak season,” commented Dawn Webb, DuPont Nature Center Manager . “We started experiencing a large number of visitors around that time and I felt, hmm let’s turn it into a festival”

Visitors will have great viewing opportunities from the center’s large deck to check out migrating shorebirds including the Red Knot, which depend on horseshoe crab eggs to help fuel their 9,000 mile journey from South America to their Arctic breeding grounds. Delaware Shorebird Project Team members will be on hand to identify the array of wildlife along the shorelines surrounding the center, including shorebirds.

“I feel it’s important to get outside and experience the natural life around you, Stated Webb.  “We’ve provided this outdoor opportunity for the past four years and we’ve seen positive results, families learning together and becoming involved in the future.”

Perched on the edge of Mispillion Harbor at the intersection of the mouths of the Mispillion River and Cedar Creek, the center regularly offers a variety of interactive exhibits, school tours and educational programs. The center is located at 2992 Lighthouse Road in Milford. From May 1 through August 31, the center’s regular hours are from 10 am to 4 pm Tuesday through Sunday, closed Mondays. Admission is free and open to the public. For more information about “Peace, Love & Horseshoe Crabs,” or about the DuPont Nature Center and its programs, please call 302‐422‐1329 or visit http://www.dupontnaturecenter.org/.