Bird-watching event teaches tricks for falcon spotting


The Associated Press – This photo shows Auburn University mascot Spirit, a bald eagle,  on the campus of Auburn University in Auburn, Ala.

By Ryan Felgenhauer

The DeKalb Public Library will hold a bird-watching event Saturday to kick off its Big Read Month.

“How to Spot a Falcon” will begin with a presentation from Peggy Doty, extension educator, environmental and energy stewardship for Boone, DeKalb and Ogle counties.

“We will talk about how to identify birds of prey using things like their wingspans and colors,” Doty said.

After the presentation, the group will go on a hike into the Russell Woods in Genoa.

There they will go on a guided bird watching tour, said Edith Craig, public relations coordinator for the DeKalb Public Library.

Despite the name of the event, there are actually not any falcons in the Russell Woods.

“There are no falcons,” Doty said. “There is a flock of wild turkeys and a bald eagle, though.”

Throughout the event, free copies of the Maltese Falcon will be given to participants.

All of the falcon-related events are in honor of October’s Big Read book, the Maltese Falcon.

The Big Read is a grant given by the National Endowment for the Arts, said Teen Librarian Steve Roman. It aims to promote literacy.

“The grant funds programs all around the library and county, all centered around one book.” Craig said.

Throughout the month of October, the DeKalb Public Library will hold events inspired by the Maltese Falcon including a showing of the film at 1:30 p.m. Sunday at the Egyptian Theatre, 135 North Second St., as well as mystery-themed crafts for kids.