Wild Georgia: Celebrate hummingbirds, snakes and jellyfish in 2023

Happy New Year. There’ll be something to celebrate nearly every day and week during the coming year — including for those of us who love wildlife and the outdoors. Here’s a small sample of celebrations in 2023:

— Jan. 5, National Bird Day. Celebrates the beauty and importance of all birds. Fort Yargo State Park near Winder will have a special program to commemorate the day.

— Feb. 2, World Wetlands Day. Calls attention to the ecological benefits and beauty of wetlands, such as Georgia’s Okefenokee Swamp and vast, coastal tidal marshes.

— March 3, World Wildlife Day. Celebrates the many beautiful and varied forms of wild flora and fauna. Georgia ranks sixth in the nation for biological diversity.

— April 22, Earth Day. Events across Georgia and elsewhere promote taking personal action to make the planet cleaner and healthier.

— May 13, World Migratory Bird Day. Celebrates the awe-inspiring phenomenon of bird migration. Check with state parks and nature centers for observances in Georgia.

— June 8, World Oceans Day. Raises awareness of the vital importance of oceans in sustaining a healthy planet. Celebrate with a visit to the Georgia Aquarium.

— July 16, World Snake Day. Promotes an appreciation and understanding of the importance of the slithering creatures — including Georgia’s 46 snake species.

— Aug 25, National Park Service Founders Day, the birthday of the nation’s national park system. Celebrate by visiting one of Georgia’s national park units.

— Sept. 2, National Hummingbird Day, when the tiny creatures, including Georgia’s ruby-throated hummingbird, are migrating south for the winter.

— Oct. 8-14, National Wildlife Refuge Week. Visit one of the 10 national refuges in Georgia.

— Nov. 3, World Jellyfish Day. Even jellyfish have their special day.

— Dec. 14, Christmas Bird Count season begins and runs through Jan. 5.

IN THE SKY: From David Dundee, Tellus Science Museum astronomer: The Quadrantid meteor shower will peak in the northern sky at about 50 meteors per hour on Tuesday and Wednesday nights. The moon will be full on Friday (Jan. 6). Venus and Mercury are very low in the west just before sunset. Mars, at its brightest, is high in the east at dusk. Jupiter is high and Saturn is very low in the southwest at dark.

Charles Seabrook can be reached at charles.seabrook@yahoo.com.