Bird watchers usually use binoculars to get closeup views of shy, skittish feathered fowl. But magnification isn't necessary at Wakodahatchee Wetlands. The "constructed wetlands" area -- the name of which sounds like "Dakota" -- was created from unused Palm Beach County Water Utilities Department land. In this case fake is better than natural, because planners used a mosaic of native plants instead of a concentration of just a couple varieties. This in turn has attracted a greater variety of birds; some 140 species have been spotted since 1996, when the preserve opened. Since then the feathered friends have gotten used to people checking them out from the three-quarter-mile boardwalk, so they come near it without fear. Anhingas, egrets, great blue herons, mottled ducks, moorhens, American coots, and ibis are just a few of the bird species you can see during today's free guided tour of the wetlands at 9 a.m. Alligators, turtles, snakes, foxes, and even an otter may also be sighted. A tour on June 16 (4 p.m.) is the last one scheduled before the boardwalk is closed for repairs in July. Wakodahatchee is located at 13026 Jog Rd. in southern Palm Beach County. Call 561-641-3429.
Brenda Ezeilo at age seven left her native Nigeria with her family when civil war broke out. For most of the 27 years since then, the Boca Raton caterer has lived in the United States, but she learned traditional cooking from her mom and other female relatives. When she hosts a cooking demonstration and tasting tonight at 7:30 at Borders in Boca Raton (9887 Glades Rd.), she'll whip up some fofo, pronounced "foo-foo." The staple Nigerian dish can be made from rice flour or semolina. She plans to use rice flour, which is finely ground, mixed with water, and boiled, turning it into dough. The fofo is then rolled into a ball and served with meat and vegetable soup seasoned with curry powder, seasoned salt, garlic, and okra, which is scooped over the top of the dough. At least, that's how it's traditionally eaten. Ezeilo says she'll provide spoons to keep novices from splashing soup on nearby books. Admission is free. Call 561-883-5854.