The persistent chill in the air this week has not been encouraging. But we in the NYC Audubon office have nonetheless been hard at work preparing for spring!
We've been organizing volunteer orientations, planning spring events, and coordinating our spring conservation research. An important new component of our Project Safe Flight research is D-Bird, an online data collection tool that allows anyone to contribute to our work to make the City safer for migrating birds. You can read about new improvements coming to D-Bird below
. To get involved in our other spring conservation work, please take a look at upcoming spring volunteer orientations and events
It's also clear from the high volume of trip registrations in the last weeks that you, our members and friends, are also ready for spring! It's been hard to keep up with the demand. Take a look at the listings at left to see some great events that still have space open. (A few suggestions: our trip to Clay Pitt Ponds State Park Preserve
, or our get-away to the lovely coast of Maine
.) And, make sure to come out for this Tuesday night's lecture by birder and author Rick Wright, as well as Eric Sanderson's lecture on Tuesday, April 21.
Various bird-related artistic endeavors are coming up as well, to give you a taste of what spring will soon bring: Alan Messer will give a special artist's talk
at his exhibition celebrating the City's birdlife on Wednesday, April 8... and both The New York Historical Society's Audubon's Aviary exhibit
and a new sounds installation, "When Soaring Sings"
should help you get through these final chill days before the thaw.
Because warmer weather--and our spring migrants--are indeed on their way! Happy April.
Last year, NYC Audubon launched D-Bird, a crowd-sourced data collection tool designed to help our researchers collect information about bird mortality in New York City. Since its inception, D-Bird has collected 242 reports of dead or injured birds in the city–a saddening statistic, to be sure, but one that is loaded with valuable information that can help us to make the City a safer place for birds. We are very proud to announce two new D-Bird developments.
Primarily, D-Bird has moved to a brand new home. If you find a dead or injured bird, you can make a valuable contribution to our research by reporting it at http://d-bird.org.
Second, D-Bird will be undergoing a bit of a renovation. Within the next few weeks, D-Bird will be redesigned to be more user-friendly, and will also feature a mobile-friendly iteration. When users navigate to http://d-bird.org in a web browser on their smartphone, they will have a much different experience than if they were using their desktop computer. As soon as a mobile user finds a dead or injured bird, they will be able to feed their current location, date, and time to D-Bird with the touch of a button; this way, we can collect the most accurate reports as quickly and easily as possible.
Click here to see an interactive map of D-Bird results and to learn more about Project Safe Flight.
The "Painted Vulture," Vultur sacra, Was Described by William Bartram as a Florida Species in 1791--and Is an Example of the Historical Mysteries Rick Wright Will Discuss during his March 31 Lecture.
Upcoming NYC Audubon Lectures
Unless otherwise noted, all lectures are free and open to the public, and are held at The Arsenal, Central Park, Fifth Avenue at 64th Street, third-floor gallery. This series has been made possible by the support of Claude and Lucienne Bloch.
ORIGINS: READING THE EARLIEST DESCRIPTIONS OF AMERICA'S BIRDS
By Rick Wright
Tuesday, March 31, 6pm
One of the marvels of the Internet is that every one of us now has access to the first descriptions of nearly all of the world's birds, material that lay hidden for years or for centuries in libraries scattered around the world. Join Rick Wright--author, lecturer, and guide of "Birds and Art" tours across the globe--for an exploration of the surprising and amusing stories of discovery that those resources preserve.
IMAGINING NEW YORK CITY FOR BIRDS AND OTHER BEASTS: THE WELIKIA PROJECT
By Eric Sanderson
Tuesday, April 21, 6pm
The Welikia Project, formally known as The Mannahatta Project, is an interactive map that adds a 400-year-old visual overlay of the former landscape ecology of New York City and surrounding boroughs. The name Welikia means “my good home” and was spoken by the Lenape people who used to inhabit the island. Join the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Senior Conservation Ecologist Eric Sanderson for a discussion of the project, which uses georeferenced historical data and field samples collected over several years to create a multi-layered map of the “Muir Web,” or ecological community, of a specific area. Eric's talk will focus on new Welikia data that sheds light on the historical ecology of Brooklyn, the Bronx, Queens, Staten Island and the New York Seascape.
Crowded House - South Brother Island Colony © Alan Messer
Conserving Our City of Nature: The Artwork of Alan Messer
Presented by NYC Audubon
Please join us Wednesday, April 8, at 6pm for an artist talk with Alan Messer. Hear from the artist whose exhibit of beautiful paintings and drawings arranged to depict the conservation work of NYC Audubon is currently on display at the Central Park Arsenal 3rd Floor Gallery. Admission the Artist talk is free, but space is limited. RSVP by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Common Goldeneye by John James Audubon, Courtesy of The New-York Historical Society
Exhibit runs Thursday, March 5 through Thursday, April 23. Learn more at http://alanmesser.net/newsevents.html
Audubon's Aviary: The Final Flight
Can't get enough of gorgeous bird artwork? Don't miss the third and final installment of the New-York Historical Society's three-year exhibit, Audubon's Aviary. The exhibit runs through Sunday, May 10. Click here to learn more about the exhibit and associated events
"When Soaring Sings" Echoes in the Dome of St. Paul's Chapel
When Soaring Sings
Don't miss "When Soaring Sings," a new sound installation by contemporary artist Jeff Talman, consisting of a multi-channel composition based on the songs, calls and choruses of over one hundred species of birds that return to New York to nest each spring. The work is presented by the Music at St. Paul's series in St. Paul's Chapel, Columbia University, NYC and will be available daily for two weeks. Click here to learn more.
Sharp-shinned Hawk © Lloyd Spitalnik
Birding Gems of Staten Island: Clay Pit Ponds State Park Preserve
Sunday, May 24: 9am-3pm
Guide: Cliff Hagen, Protectors of Pine Oak Woods
Staten Island naturalist and Cliff Hagen will introduce you to the ponds, wetlands, and woods of this ecologically and historically rich 260-acre natural area, rich with migrating and breeding birds, as well as fence lizards, eastern box turtles, Fowler’s toads, and black racer snakes. Learn more and register
Click here to see our full listings of spring trips.
Atlantic Puffin © David Speiser
Puffins, Warblers, and Lobster Boats: The Enchanting Coast of Maine
Saturday, May 23 – Saturday, May 30
Guide: Gabriel Willow
Come along with NYC Audubon and explore Maine's “Country of the Pointed Firs”: land of lighthouses, quaint villages, and lobster pounds... all nestled in a setting of primeval pine forests, bogs, and bucolic islands. Home to some of the East’s last true wilderness, Maine hosts populations of Atlantic puffin, bear, moose, shorebirds, and dozens of warbler species. This land of forests and rocky coast has been an inspiration to artists and naturalists for generations. Our trip will visit coastal salt marshes and beaches, the beautiful fishing village of Camden, and enchanting Monhegan Island—charming artist colony and birders' paradise. Click here to learn more and see a full trip itinerary.
Volunteers Take Part in Our Horseshoe Crab Monitoring Project. Photo © NYC Audubon
Volunteer with Us this Spring!
Spring is just around the corner, and all NYC Audubon's conservation projects are ready to come out of hibernation! Save the date for our spring volunteer orientations, below. Please email us at email@example.com to register for all sessions. You can read more about our conservation work here.
Jamaica Bay: Count shorebirds and horseshoe crabs in Jamaica Bay, an important stopover for migratory shorebirds. Orientations will be held Thursday, April 16, and Friday, April 24, 6-8pm
Harbor Herons Foraging Study: Observe herons and egrets as they forage in NYC waterways. An orientation will be held Monday, May 4, 6-8pm
McGolrick Park: We'll need help planting, weeding, and watering throughout the spring and summer at our “urban oasis” in McGolrick Park, Brooklyn. Come garden with us!
Help Us Clean Up Plumb Beach!
On Saturday, April 18, join NYC Audubon and NYC H2O for a volunteer beach cleanup at Plumb Beach, Brooklyn, from 10am to 1pm. Plumb Beach is a critical breeding ground for horseshoe crabs--and provides important stopover habitat for migrating shorebirds that feed on the crabs' eggs. Come help us get the beach cleaned up in time the arrival of the crabs in May!
NYC Audubon and NYC H2O will be providing free bus transportation to Plumb Beach from Union Square, Manhattan, but space on the bus is limited. Public transportation options are also available, and there is parking for private vehicles at Plumb Beach.
Click here to register.
Great Horned Owl © François Portmann
Top and Sidebar Photos: great egret, Atlantic puffins © Steve Nanz; red-winged blackbird © Laura Meyers; ruddy turnstones and red knots © Lloyd Spitalnik.
* This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License.