Purple Martins are Back!

As dusk settles in Shockoe Bottom, an unusual flock of purple martins interrupt their migration to Brazil for a stopover for much of July and August.

Flock of Purple Martins

Their “hotel” of choice is the line of Bradford Pear trees just north of the market. The National Audubon Society is offering free walks and insight into purple martins on Wednesday, July 20, Sunday July 24, Wednesday July 27, and Sunday July 31. Gather at the north corner of the 17th Street Farmers’ Market, at north 17th street, just north of East Main Street. Be there at 7:30 PM!

The “Gone to the Birds” Festival will be held August 6, 2011 from 6 to 9 PM with its purple gelato and take home a gourd to house Martins in your own yard. This is the only urban bird festival where onlookers can experience the phenomenon of Purple Martins rushing to roost in the heart of the city!

Learn more about purple martins! Some of the restaurants around the market will even feature a purple martini!

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