'Snowbirds' nest along the Coast

'Snowbirds' nest along the Coast

BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - On the coast, there are hundreds of types of birds, including one very seasonal, very unique bird - snowbirds.

Not actual birds, snowbirds are people who migrate south for the winter to escape treacherous conditions back home.

"We get snow; like 100 inches plus of snow annually," said Ralph Dobson, from South Bend, Iowa.

Some snowbirds travel from even farther north.

"We're from a little town called Victoria Harbor in Ontario," said Ron Chalmers, who is on a six month trip which started in Las Vegas. "It's about 100 miles north of Toronto, and right now it's probably about 20 below zero so we're quite happy with the 60 degree weather we're enjoying here."

From December to March, RV parks are packed with vehicles sporting rarely seen license plates and people with unfamiliar accents who are trying to warm up.

But, some snowbirds choose to nest on the Coast for other reasons including golf, beaches and of course, casinos.

"I come to the Mississippi Gulf Coast because I'm an avid gambler,"said Chalmers.

With weather being the biggest draw, what may be chilly to residents, is warm to most snowbirds.

"We'll see people out here when we're like in sweaters, you'll see people out here in shorts," said Ellis Hill, director of Southern Golf Club

Hill says the snowbirds' yearly presence helps greatly during a time where most locals are staying indoors.

"Well you know, typically in the winter months when things are a little bit slower here, we have a lot of people that do come down from the north and will come play golf and eat in our restaurant," added Hill. "So, it supplements income for the winter months and we welcome and enjoy having them here."

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