Well this was not the March we expected. Admittedly, the birds here seem quite unaffected.
We did keep observing birds from our windows and cams, just with fewer human friends (in person). Welcome back, Common Grackle and Song Sparrow!
We’ve rearranged our schedules and updated some policies to deal with COVID-19. Details soon! The birds are being fed less often, and we’d already changed what and where we’d fed them. (We do that each spring anyway, because the forests in Huntington do have bears and we’d prefer only smaller mammals take advantage of what the birds leave.)
Sometimes, a month with nothing unusual is really quite comforting.
But that was just old friends who are birds! For our human friends, in February we also shared programs about Kinglets, opened up for the Great Backyard Bird Count, painted signs, installed our Little Free Library, played Wingspan at the Museum, and hopefully inspired art! Of course, you’d have to look through the window the other wayto see most of those things (or come inside).
Built of an upcycled Wood Duck nesting box, the Birds of Vermont Museum’s Little Free Library (LFL) is now up and open to the public. It is easy to get to: on a shed wall near the entrance path to the Museum. In keeping with a nesting motif (that is, slightly hidden), and wishing to keep some of the weather off, volunteer Erny P., 85, attached our LFL under the shed’s eaves. Erny also did the remodeling of the box, adding a door and a shelf for smaller books. The clear window gives a sneak peek at what’s inside.
It’s been a somewhat snowy month (with what feels like big temperature swings and more thawing). This has made for lovely photos (check out our instagram), and not-too-troublesome road conditions for people coming to our events (a series of bird talks and a few walks). The feeders aren’t quiet, exactly, but they are slight less diverse. Still, it’s a joy to see turkey tracks when you go out in the morning to fill the feeders!
We’ve enjoyed welcoming some new birders to our monthly bird monitoring walks. This more than makes up for the quiet of the winter species counts at our a Viewing Window. These walks are the last Saturday of every month. We record those observations over on eBird.
Before you head over there, though, enjoy this short but sweet December window observation list. What’s your favorite of the species listed here? How come ?
A Call to Artists from the Birds of Vermont Museum
What borders do birds encounter? Our maps do not typically reflect the territories they perceive, the ranges they travel, or the barriers they comes across. How do birds’ boundaries connect to human borders? To those of other species? Edges of things—physically, spatially, temporally— raise questions, not least of which is “Is it really there?”
We ponder this, wondering, how do and will these encounters and connections alter us, birds, and the borders themselves?
We seek works that share visions of birds, borders, and boundaries, now and into the future, for our 2020 art exhibit, Borders.
Well, November was quieter! Or at least, our whiteboard is less cluttered. In addition to spending more time with off-site programs and in the back office, the species count is usually lower this time of year as well.
October is such a rich month. Migration trails off, yes, and the foliage is mostly past by the end of the month. But for us, it’s a month rich with volunteers, birding, and a sense of getting ready for a behind-the-scenes season.
Enjoy the double-list this month, and read on for why!