In addition to sharing the bird checklist, I also want to share an update with those of you that are interested in Cobb County's Noonday Creek Trail ~ Bells Ferry end of the trail leading to / Retention Pond work.
I now have an update on the old retention pond between the theatre and Town Center Mall. Many of us have birded that pond for years way before the latest pedestrian bridge was erected. Now there is a vehicular bridge that spans the wetland as well. The latest plans for this area, by the Town Center Improvement District are to take this huge retention pond and turn it into a paddle boating area including a fountain and other "improvements". This pond area could use some invasive plant removal but overall this is a great place for new birders and experienced birders alike to come for a diverse amount of birds considering the location behind Town Center Mall.
The architectural plans are drawn up to include a "bird trail" but that plan would mean clearing out all of the scrubby habitat at the waters edge where sparrows and many other birds use for cover. The trail is already there and was paid for with SPLOST funds.
SO I am sharing this because I am volunteering to work with the Bells Ferry Civic group to try and begin a conversation with the CCID about the potential for this retention pond area to be an educational and certified habitat instead of creating a paddle boating feature for the community. We would like to meet and discuss how we can conserve this space for wildlife to continue thriving as well as a place for educating the community.
Just last week while I was leading the walk along the bridge, a man stopped to share with me that he witnessed a pair of bobcats walking under the bridge, and sure enough, I found the tracks left behind. As all of you know this is just one example of many, where wild life observations can occur, if the community stops to take a look. Through the years I've observed many great birds, mink, beaver, otter and would love to see the Bobcat there too. There are many people who enjoy this pond and are not aware of what is going on and have no idea that it will be clear cut to create a community paddle boating / entertainment area. However, there are others who feel as I do and would like for this habitat to remain as it is, so we can continue to try and hold onto places still full of birds in a place like Cobb where development is out of control. This pond is the highlight of my monthly bird walk so I am biased of course, as I should be.
I have already reached out to a few other birders and groups to join me in advocacy for this area along the Noonday Creek Trial but at this point, there is not much interest. Not sure what will happen or how many millions will eventually be spent on this paddle boat pond. I am hoping that if enough Naturalist, Birders, Cobb County citizens and others interested in conservation / advocacy for habitat come together for a discussion, then we can make a difference for a win - win plan for everyone that includes wildlife.
Please email me directly if you have a resource, contact or desire to take time to discuss this issue along the Noonday Creek Trial.