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To the birds: Louisiana looks for best birding spots

July 17, 2021 GMT

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The state of Louisiana is asking residents for the best places to go birdwatching.

People have until Sept. 30 to submit nominations to be included in the redesigned Louisiana Birding Trails, the Office of Tourism said in a news release. The nominations are part of an effort to update and possibly expand the trails and develop the state’s eco-tourism.

Louisiana and its coastal wetlands are an important location for migrating birds.

“Louisiana is an ideal destination for birding enthusiasts, and I’m excited to begin this process to better promote and share Louisiana’s beautiful outdoors and variety of wildlife with visitors from across the world,” said Lt. Gov. Billy Nungesser in the release.

The office is also holding meetings across the state to discuss the birding trails update with the public. The trails were launched 20 years ago.

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The update is partly funded by a grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration. The Daily Advertiser reported that once sites are nominated and approved, the state will begin producing content such as maps and images to promote bird-watching.

Organizers are also looking at ways to use technology to promote wildlife education. Sharon Calcote of the Office of Tourism said during a meeting in Lafayette that one way might be creating a website about the trails that could also play bird calls.

“With the website, we can create these different avenues for visitors to pursue, which we didn’t have 20 years ago,” Calcote said.