New York City Audubon champions nature in the city’s five boroughs through a combination of engaging and entertaining programs, and innovative conservation campaigns.
New York City Audubon
Black-Throated Blue Warbler © Lloyd Spitalnik

Upcoming September and October Events

Note: Only events with open registration are listed below. 
Click here to see ALL Upcoming Events & Adventures

9/7: Bird Survey at McGolrick Park

9/9: Fall Warblers with Joe Giunta

9/10: Intro to Birding: Bird Walk with Tod Winston 

9/10: Morning Fall Migration Walk in Prospect Park with Gabriel Willow 

9/11: Fall Birding at Wave Hill with Gabriel Willow

9/13: Tuesday Evening Fall Migration Walks in Central Park with Gabriel Willow begin 

9/13: Native Plant Walk at McGolrick Park

9/14: Wednesday Evening Fall Migration Walks in Central Park with Gabriel Willow begin 

9/16: Friday Morning Fall Migration Walk in the North End, Central Park with Gabriel Willow

9/17: International Coastal Cleanup at Jamaica Bay

9/18: Birding Gems of Staten Island: Clove Lakes Park with Gabriel Willow

9/18: Discovery Day at Freshkills Park

9/18: KIDS Member Walk in Central Park with Kellye Rosenheim, Tod Winston, and Nancy Ward

9/24: Jamaica Bay Sunset Ecology Cruise with Don Riepe, American Littoral Society

9/24: Greenpoint EcoFest

9/25: Fall Migrants of Woodlawn Cemetery, the Bronx with Tod Winston, Joe McManus

9/30: Friday Morning Fall Migration Walk in the North End, Central Park with Gabriel Willow

10/1: Raptor Trust and Great Swamp, NJ with Don Riepe, Tod Winston

10/2: Birding Gems of Queens: Evergreens Cemetery and the Ridgewood Reservoirs with Kellye Rosenheim

10/6: Sparrow Identification Workshop with Gabriel Willow

10/8: Fall Raptor Migration with Don Riepe, American Littoral Socety

10/8: Nature and Joy: A New Defense of the Natural World, a Lecture by Michael McCarthy

10/9: Fall Birding at Wave Hill with Gabriel Willow

10/13: Raptor ID Workshop with Gabriel Willow

10/14: Friday Morning Fall Migration Walk in the North End, Central Park with Gabriel Willow

10/15: Fall Migrants of Inwood Hill Park, Manhattan with Annie Barry

10/15: NYC Audubon Day at Hawk Mountain, PA with Gabriel Willow

10/16: Birding Gems of Staten Island: Freshkills Park with Cliff Hagen

10/20: Beginning Birding with Tod Winston begins

10/28: Friday Morning Fall Migration Walk in the North End, Central Park with Gabriel Willow

10/29: Fall Foliage Hike in the Greenbelt, Staten Island with Gabriel Willow


Ongoing Events

Van Cortlandt Bird Walks, The Bronx
Saturdays, September 3 - November 26, 8-9:30am

Birding Basics for Families: The Ramble, Central Park
Saturdays, September 3 - September 24, 10-11am

Birding Basics for Families: The North Woods, Central Park
Sundays, September 4 - September 25, 10-11am

Birding Tours of Bryant Park
Mondays, September 12 - October 17, 8-9am
Thursdays, September 15 - October 20, 5-6pm


Upcoming Overnight Trips

Bald Eagle © Lloyd Spitalnik


Thursday, November 10, 9am - Sunday, November 13, 6pm
Guide: Don Riepe
With American Littoral Society

A great natural history weekend on the Virginia coast. See wild ponies, Snow Geese, Bald eagles, migrating hawks, waterfowl, shorebirds and lots more. includes 3 nights lodging at the luxurious Refuge Inn (heated pool, jacuzzi, sauna, exercise room, observation deck), breakfast, Safari bus tour of back dunes area, 5 guided hikes, evening programs, plus an "All-you-can Eat" oyster & seafood dinner. Contact Don Riepe at (718) 474-0896 or for info regarding transportation, itinerary, and reservations. $395 ($180 single room supplement)


Great Egret © Steve Nanz

The eGret
September 2016

Fall migrants are on the wing! Close to 20 warbler species were spotted in Central Park this past weekend, including blue-winged, Tennessee, chestnut-sided, and Canada. (Don't miss out: sign up now for fall trips.) Happily, our migrants will have an extra spot to "stop over" in New York City this fall: Greenpoint's new green roof! We lead this issue with a run-down of all the exciting events planned this fall in a greener and greener Greenpoint, including the Greenpoint EcoFest on Saturday, September 24. In this issue we also announce the 2016 Fall Roost Honorees: NYC Audubon's Immediate Past President Harry Maas, the late Michael Ahern and Michael Ahern Productions, and Volunteer of the Year Phil Cusimano. Read more and get your tickets to the Fall Roost now.

On a sad note, we've just learned of the recent passing of longtime birder and conservationist Geoffrey Nulle. The Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge is one of several areas in the City that benefited from the environmental stewardship of the late Mr. Nulle, who helped maintain it as an undisturbed natural space. This past August 20, many enjoyed the refuge's peaceful habitat during the annual Jamaica Bay Shorebird Festival; we were pleased to see many of you there celebrating our migratory shorebirds. Attendees were treated to sightings of many shorebird species on the East Pond during the festival, but migrating shorebirds have continued to make their presence known in the City in recent days: a number of intriguing species have appeared at Jones Beach, including buff-breasted and pectoral sandpipers, as well as red-necked phalaropes. Please help us monitor our shorebird numbers by participating in the NYC Shorebird Blitz on Saturday, September 3. If you're not a shorebirder, though, there are lots of other ways to get involved this fall: it's not too late to become a Project Safe Flight monitor or lend your hand as a volunteer at the Tribute in Light or the International Coastal Cleanup on Saturday, September 17. And all can help by contributing to D-Bird. (Our Harbor Herons program is over for the year... but on that subject, the Washington Post featured a nice write-up of Prall's Island this past week.) If you just want to get out and bird this fall, though: take Joe Giunta's Fall Warblers class on Friday, September 9, join Gabriel Willow in Prospect Park on Saturday, September 10, or visit Freshkills Park on Sunday, September 18. To our members: sign up now for fall member walks! And please mark your calendars for our Thursday, November 17 lecture with author Elizabeth Barlow Rogers

Finally: I don't usually identify myself by name here. But this issue, I'll make an exception. This is Tod Winston, NYC Audubon's communications manager, and I'm sad to write that this will be my last eGret. Though I will continue to be a frequent presence at NYC Audubon as a birding guide and conservation research assistant into the foreseeable future, I am leaving my communications position to begin work this week at National Audubon. There I begin a new role as program associate for Audubon's new Plants for Birds program; this fall I'll be helping to manage the roll-out of a national database designed to promote the planting of native plants for birds and wildlife—a longtime interest of mine. (You can read about the Plants for Birds project here.) It has been a great pleasure crafting The eGret, and speaking to all of you about the joy and love of birds through its lines, these past five years. For most of that time, I've been aided in production of The eGret by Andrew Maas, and I know that I leave The eGret, as well as all of NYC Audubon's communications needs, in very able hands.

So. I'll finish this final introduction by saying: I hope to see you out birding soon! Please join me on a walk this fall. Happy September.

Greenpoint's New Green Roof, Currently Under Construction © NYC Audubon
Construction of Greenpoint's New Green Roof Is Currently in Progress. Photo © NYC Audubon

Witness the Greening of Greenpoint This Fall!

Join NYC Audubon this fall in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, for walks, talks, and an EcoFest at the new Kingsland Wildflowers green roof and the Urban Oasis in McGolrick Park. NYC Audubon has partnered with Alive Structures to design and install a bird-friendly wildflower green roof in the heart of industrial Greenpoint. The Kingsland Wildflowers green roof will be one of the larger green roofs in the City, currently being constructed with a $971,782 legacy grant awarded by the Greenpoint Community Environmental Fund to NYC Audubon and its partners as part of a settlement with ExxonMobil.

In addition to attracting wildlife and diverting runoff rainwater, the rooftop will have outdoor and indoor educational facilities, with programs throughout the year. (Alive Structures Founder Marni Majorelle and NYC Audubon's Debra Kriensky were interviewed about the new space this past week in a piece on This fall's Greenpoint events include:

Wednesday, September 7, 8-9am (Rain Date Friday, September 9)
Tuesday, October 4, 8-9am (Rain Date Wednesday, October 5)

Meet in the southwest corner of McGolrick Park, at the corner of Russell Street and Driggs Avenue, and join us for a citizen-science bird survey. To register, email

Tuesday, September 13, 5:30-6:30pm (Rain Date Thursday, September 15)
Guides: Susan Elbin, PhD; Tod Winston

Meet in the southwest corner of McGolrick Park, at the corner of Russell Street and Driggs Avenue, and join us for a free interpretive walk of the Park’s Urban Oasis with NYC Audubon Director of Conservation and Science Susan Elbin and Communications Manager Tod Winston. To register, email

Have a green thumb? McGolrick Park needs your help! If you would like to help maintain the Urban Oasis by weeding or watering, email to learn more about how you can help or to sign up to receive information about any upcoming community gardening events.

Saturday, September 24, 11am-3pm

Visit our work-in-progress green roof and wildflower meadow at 520 Kingsland Avenue in Greenpoint (Google Map). Enjoy a fun family day, with children’s activities, live music, food and refreshments, and expert discussions on the green roof habitat being created, green infrastructure, and waste water management. Organizations that will be in attendance include Newtown Creek Alliance; Riverkeeper; NYC Department of Sanitation - Bureau of Recycling and Sustainability; Department of Environmental Protection; and Broadway Stages. Broadway Stages will be providing catering. 

Saturday, October 8
520 Kingsland Avenue in Greenpoint

5-6pm: Open Roof 
6-6:45pm: Presentation by Michael McCarthy
6:45-7:30pm: Q & A and Book Signing

We will be hosting an "open roof" showing of the newly installed green roof and a special presentation from acclaimed author Michael McCarthy. Join us at 5pm to explore the newly installed green roof, enjoy light refreshments, and hear from green roof experts about the Kingsland Wildflowers Roof and Community Space project. Then, acclaimed author Michael McCarthy will present an evening lecture based on his book The Moth Snowstorm.

Funding provided by the Office of the New York State Attorney General and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation through the Greenpoint Community Environmental Fund.



The 12th Annual Fall Roost, October 17, at Guastavino's
The 12th Annual Fall Roost Benefit Will Take Place on Monday, October 17, at Guastavino's

Honorees Announced for the 2016 Fall Roost

Join us as we celebrate New York City Audubon’s twelfth annual Fall Roost. This year we are thrilled to honor Harry Maas, immediate past president of NYC Audubon, for his years of service and leadership; Michael Ahern Productions and the late Michael Ahern for working with us to assure safe passage of migratory songbirds during the Tribute in Light memorial; and our 2016 Volunteer of the Year, Phil Cusimano, for his diligence and dedication to our horseshoe crab monitoring project.

Proceeds from the Fall Roost support New York City Audubon's efforts to protect wild birds and their habitat in the five boroughs through scientific research, community engagement, advocacy, and hands-on habitat restoration. In particular, we are working to improve the quality of stopover habitat and reduce threats to birds from unnecessary illumination and from reflective glass. 

Click here to learn more and purchase tickets for the 12th annual Fall Roost. 

Sad News

We were saddened to hear of the passing of Geoffrey Nulle, a former president of the Linnaean Society of New York and a longtime member of the New York City birding and conservation communities. Jeff was a good friend of the late Norman Stotz, a past president of NYC Audubon. The two men collaborated on habitat advocacy projects particularly in Riverside Park and the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. According to Andrew Rubenfeld, president of the Linnaean Society of New York, "Jeff also served as LSNY vice president and council member. As chair of the conservation committee he was instrumental in blocking plans for a major bicycle path through Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. Jeff will be best remembered for his work in establishing a 10-acre designated bird sanctuary in Riverside Park, as well as his tireless management of the park's famous 'drip.' He also did volunteer work at the Great Gull Island office at the American Museum of Natural History." Jeff's tireless work to conserve birds in New York City is an inspiration to us all. He shall be greatly missed.

When available, information about a memorial service will be posted on the Linnaean Society of New York website (

Short-billed Dowitchers at Jamaica Bay Shorebird Festival, August 20, 2016 © Don Riepe
Short-Billed Dowitchers at the 11th Annual Jamaica Bay Shorebird Festival © Don Riepe

A Successful—and Shorebird-ful—11th Annual Shorebird Festival

A grand and very birdy time was had by all at the 11th Annual Shorebird Festival, held on August 20 at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. Attendees enjoyed a welcome by Gateway Superintendent Jennifer Nersesian and presentations by author and shorebird expert Kevin Karlson, author and bird photography guru Lloyd Spitalnik, Jamaica Bay Guardian Don Riepe, and NYC Audubon Biologist Debra Kriensky. Attendees both young and old enjoyed family activities led by the National Park Service. And the shorebirds themselves also showed up: good numbers were found on the East Pond. Highlights included good looks at red knots, stilted sandpipers, black-bellied and semipalmated plovers, several white-rumped sandpipers, and many short-billed dowitchers, yellow-legs, and semipalmated sandpipers. Not to mention at least five wader species, plenty of osprey, a hunting peregrine falcon, and a pair of belted kingfishers. And to cap things off, using a radar detector, Debra Kriensky and NYC Audubon Director of Conservation and Science Susan Elbin detected the presence of one of five semipalmated sandpipers that they had fitted with nanotags just the week before. (Stay tuned to hear more about that project!)

Haven't had your fill of shorebirds yet this season? See below for another chance to watch shorebirds and contribute to shorebird conservation. 

Ruddy Turnstone © Steve Nanz
Ruddy Turnstone © Steve Nanz

Join the NYC Shorebird Blitz

If you didn't get enough shorebirds at the 11th Annual Shorebird Festival, join our Fall 2016 NYC Shorebird Blitz on Saturday, September 3 to help us create a one-day snapshot of shorebird activity throughout the City. Many locations have already been assigned (click here for a map), but we could still use your help to cover more potential shorebird habitats; it can be anywhere in New York City that shorebirds might be found! If you're interested in participating or would like more information, email

Glossy Ibis © Kenny P. (Creative Commons Attribution License)
Glossy Ibis Have Recently Been Sighted during Nesting Season on Prall's Island, Which Has Not Hosted Breeding Waders in Recent Years. Photo © Kenny P.*

Harbor Herons in the News

NYC Audubon's Harbor Herons program was covered in a recent article in the Washington Post, which quotes NYC Audubon's Susan Elbin. The piece discusses the history of wading birds in the harbor and the possibility of attracting birds back to Prall's Island, which hosted some of the first birds to nest here in the 1970s.

Injured American Woodcock © Bird Transporter Victoria Booth
American Woodcocks Are Frequent Victims of Window Collisions in New York City. Photo © Bird Transporter Victoria Booth

It's Not Too Late To Become a Project Safe Flight Monitor This Fall

Interested in volunteering for Project Safe Flight but missed the orientation? We could still use help with our weekly monitoring from Sept. 1 to Nov. 10 at several of our sites, including the Museum of Jewish Heritage, Brookfield Place, and Bryant Park. Please contact for more information on how to sign on.

Whether or not you are able to volunteer as a regular Project Safe Flight monitor, you can help by using, and spreading the word about, D-Bird, NYC Audubon's online database for recording dead and injured birds. Click here to learn more about D-Bird.

Mourning Warbler © David Speiser
Mourning Warbler © David Speiser

Learn to Identify Warblers Like a Pro with Joe Giunta

Friday, September 9, 6:30-8:30pm (class)
Sunday, September 11, 8-11am (trip)

Identifying “confusing fall warblers” can be tricky, even for the experts. Come study some of the most puzzling species that stop through our area during fall migration with expert Joe Giunta, and then enjoy a second session in the “classroom” of Central Park. Click here to learn more and to register.

Scarlet Tanager © Laura Meyers
Scarlet Tanager (Fall Male) © Laura Meyers

Visit Prospect Walk with Gabriel Willow

Saturday, September 10, 8-11am
Meet under the arch in Grand Army Plaza to join Gabriel Willow for a leisurely walk getting to know the fall migrants of "Brooklyn's Backyard," beautiful Prospect Park. Prospect Park has a wide variety of habitats that attracts a number of both breeding and passage migrant bird species, with even more recorded than in Central Park. We will explore the park's meadows, forests, and waterways in search of migratory warblers, vireos, thrushes, tanagers, waterfowl, and more. Click here to register.

Freshkills Park © City of New York, NYC Parks, Freshkills Park
Freshkills Park © City of New York, NYC Parks, Freshkills Park

Freshkills Park Discovery Day

Sunday, September 18, 11am-4pm
Guides: NYC Audubon, NYC Parks
With NYC Parks

At 2,200 acres, Freshkills Park is almost three times the size of Central Park and the largest park to be developed in New York City in over 100 years. It also has a significant history as the site of the former Fresh Kills Landfill. The landfill has been covered with layers of soil and infrastructure, and the site has become a place for wildlife, recreation, science, education, and art. On September 18, eight miles of trails and paths will offer views of the park’s hills, creeks, and wildlife. Activities including guided bird walks with NYC Audubon, hiking, running, bike-riding, and kayaking, free shuttle buses into the park and to the top of a hill offering panoramic views of New York, and educational tours and displays. Click here to learn more.

Black Skimmer © Steve Nanz
Beach-Nesting Species Like the Black Skimmer Benefit from NYC Audubon's Conservation Work. Photo © Steve Nanz


Work in NYC Audubon’s friendly office or in the field and make a difference for the City’s wildlife. There are many ways you can help. If you would like to volunteer for specific programs like the ones listed below, or want to learn more about ways you can contribute, please contact us at Click here to learn more ways you can volunteer.

There are many ways to participate in Project Safe Flight! Volunteers can pick up injured birds and transport them to the Wild Bird Fund (as needed); participate in our Tribute in Light monitoring event (on Sept. 11); and more. Training dates for all of these Project Safe Flight activities are below. Training sessions will be held at our offices at 71 W 23rd St Suite 1523 unless otherwise noted. Please contact us to register.
  • Tribute in Light Monitoring: Thursday, September 1, 6-7pm. With National September 11 Memorial & Museum.
  • Injured Bird Transporting: Wednesday, September 7, 6-7pm, at The Wild Bird Fund: 565 Columbus Avenue in Manhattan.

Wednesday, September 7, 8-9am (Rain Date: Friday, September 9)
and Tuesday, October 4, 8-9am (Rain Date: Wednesday, October 5)

During fall migration, many birds fly through New York City and are dependent on green spaces like McGolrick Park to rest and refuel during their long journey. Contribute to knowledge about which birds are using this Greenpoint park and our Urban Oasis native plant garden as a habitat year-round. To join and help demonstrate the importance of green space in New York City, email Binoculars are helpful, but not necessary and beginners are welcome!

Have a green thumb? McGolrick Park needs your help! If you would like to help maintain the Urban Oasis by weeding or watering, email to learn more about how you can help or to sign up to receive information about any upcoming community gardening events.

Saturday, September 17, 10am-2pm (Rain Date: Sunday, September 18)
With Sadhana, American Littoral Society, and National Park Service

Join us at North Channel Bridge to take part in a multi-state effort to improve coastline habitat. The North Channel Bridge area, used by species like the American oystercatcher, is also a stone’s throw away from the Harbor Heron Islands, the newly restored Elders Point Marsh, and the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge. Help us clear the beach and raise awareness of the importance of coastal areas to birdlife. Equipment and refreshments are provided; free bus transportation from Manhattan is available (space is limited). Click here to learn more and register.

 Ruby-Crowned Kinglet © Ellen Michaels
Ruby-Crowned Kinglet © Ellen Michaels

Fall Member Walks

All Member Events listed below are free for contributing NYC Audubon members at the Student/Senior level and up. To register, please fill out the registration form at the bottom of our Member Events web page or call Kellye Rosenheim at 212-691-7483 x306.

Sunday, September 11, 9-10:30am

New Destination! Meet NYC Audubon Board Member Kellie Quiñones at Astoria Boulevard South and 21st Street to seek out migrating birds.

Tuesday, September 13, 7:30-9:30am

Meet at Central Park West and 72nd Street. Explore the Ramble with NYC Audubon Past President Harry Maas and revel in fall migration in New York City.

Friday, September 16, 7:30-9am

Meet at the entrance to Prospect Park across from Grand Army Plaza and join NYC Audubon Board Member Tom Stephenson, author of The Warbler Guide and creator of the Bird Genie app, for a fall migration walk.

Friday, October 7, 4-5:30pm

Join NYC Audubon Director of Development Kellye Rosenheim for a fall stroll through the Ramble. Meet at the Loeb Boathouse snack bar.


SAVE THE DATE: Fall Lectures

All lectures are free and open to the public. PLEASE NOTE: This year our lecture series will be held at Reidy Hall at the Unitarian Church of All Souls, Lexington Avenue between 79th and 80th Streets in Manhattan. This series has been made possible by the support of Claude and Lucienne Bloch.

By Elizabeth Barlow Rogers
Thursday, November 17, 7pm

In her new book Green Metropolis, Betsy Barlow Rogers introduces us to seven remarkable New York City green spaces and to the people who have been instrumental in their design and protection. As a founder of the Central Park Conservancy and current president of the Foundation for Landscape Studies, the author is well positioned to take us through the history—both natural and human—of how these places were created and how they have been transformed.

Learn about all of our upcoming lectures by visiting our Lectures page.

Buff-Breasted Sandpiper © Lloyd Spitalnik
Several Buff-Breasted Sandpipers Have Been Spotted at Jones Beach in the Past Week. Photo © Lloyd Spitalnik

Top and Sidebar Photos: great egret © Steve Nanz; black-throated blue warbler, bald eagle © Lloyd Spitalnik

* This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License.

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