Richmond plaza to fill with artists composing bird chalk drawings Wednesday

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Richmond Civic Center Plaza is set to become more colorful after dozens of professional and amateur artists set out Wednesday to create large scale bird chalk drawings in celebration of the Year of the Bird.

In addition, Mayor Tom Butt, who will provide closing remarks for the event that runs from 9 a.m. till noon, will announce the declaration of the City of Richmond’s first ever official bird, according to the mayor’s office.

The event is a partnership with the Golden Gate Audubon Society and will feature drawings of native bird species including the Great-Blue Heron, Belted Kingfisher and the Osprey.

A separate celebration is in order, as well, for the famous Ospreys mounted atop the historic Whirley Crane near the SS Red Oak Victory. The Ospreys, named Richmond and Rosie, laid their first egg of the year on March 31, with their second egg is anticipated sometime this week, according to the mayor’s office. We know this because last year the city and the Golden Gate Audubon Society mounted two nest cameras on the Whirley Crane to provide live public viewing.

In fact, Richmond boasts the Bay Area’s largest number of successful nesting Osprey pairs with 15, which collectively raised and fledged 23 wild Ospreys last year, officials said.

“The public’s fascination with the Osprey pair has generated a growth of interest in native bird species and the Golden Gate Audubon Society has used to opportunity to promote wildlife education and connection to the local ecology,” according to the mayor’s office.

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