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INTERNATIONAL BIRD DAY
The first of April is celebrated as International Bird Day.
It is at this time (late March – early April), when the day becomes longer and the sun is brighter, that migratory birds return to their native places: starlings, larks, wagtails, finches and others.
The origins of this holiday can be found in such Slavic traditions as the spring meeting of larks and nesting for starlings and storks. The Slavs celebrated the holiday Forty forties or the Day of the Lark on March 22, the day of the vernal equinox.
The modern history of the holiday begins at the end of the 19th century in the United States. The holiday was held on May 4 and was supposed to acquaint children with wildlife birds, methods of their protection.
At the beginning of the 20th century, the holiday spreads to European countries. True, at that time they paid attention only to the protection of birds useful for agriculture.
In the Russian Empire, Bird Day was held by children’s May Unions and departments of the Russian Society for the Protection of Animals. They organized exhibitions of drawings, hung artificial nests, introduced children to various birds of nature in Russia.
In 1924, in the USSR, the celebration of the Day of the Birds was resumed by young people under the leadership of N. Dergunov and P. Smolin. Since the 1930s, the holiday has taken on a national scale, but the emphasis is on the protection of birds useful for agriculture. Since the early 1950s, Bird Day has been celebrated on April 1st with parades with birdhouses.
More than 20 species of birds return to the Summer and Mikhailovsky Gardens for the summer. A large number of birdhouses, titmouses, and wagtail houses are installed in the gardens. All of them are hung on trees so that it is convenient for the birds to breed in them.
On April 1, 2021, the gardens of the Russian Museum are closed for drying. And the birds will have a whole month of peace and quiet to comfortably hatch their chicks.
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