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Explore birds on a hyperlocal level at the Academy’s new exhibit
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Explore birds on a hyperlocal level at the Academy’s new exhibit

Conversations With Birds connects people with the natural world, kicking off on Saturday.

Even in a highly urbanized city like Philadelphia, nature is all around us. A new exhibit brings a hyperlocal lens to our relationship with birds.

Conversations With Birds showcases wildlife photography and video, resources to watch and protect birds, interactive exhibits, and taxidermy at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University. The exhibit opens Saturday, February 18th.

The exhibit showcases the range of Philadelphia connections to birds. One piece showcases Academy Educator and wildlife photographer Anwar Abdul Qawi, who is soon embarking on an 18-day trip to Bioko Island with the Academy of Natural Sciences. Qawi began his journey by documenting local birds that died from struck windows, and he currently manages the live animal collection at the Academy.

Anwar Abdul Qawi
Anwar Abdul-Qawi with his exhibit feature at Conversations with Birds

The Academy began documenting bird collisions with glass when the lights of City Hall lit up in the 1890s. The Academy’s collection currently contains over 205,000 skin studies to study climate change species decline and avian parasites. The Specimen Prep Lab shows how the Academy can preserve deceased birds – without chemicals – for its studies.

Live demonstrations of preparing bird specimens for Bird Safe Philly

Another section shares tips and examples of guides to begin birding, along with hardware and tech tools like BirdCast to hone the craft.

conversations with Birds
One of the many bird guides showcased in Conversations with Birds

“The love of birds by casual observers, passionate enthusiasts and scientist experts alike is truly inspiring and can lead us all to deeper insights about nature and our environment,” said Academy President and CEO Scott Cooper.

Conversations With Birds opens to the public Saturday, February 18th. Admission is free with general museum admission and on view through Sunday, May 21. 


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Julie Hancher is Editor-in-Chief of Green Philly, sharing her expertise of all things sustainable in the city of brotherly love. She enjoys long walks in the park with local beer and greening her travels, cooking & cat, Sir Floofus Drake. View all posts by Julie Hancher
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