Through the Window: October 2021 (and Big Sit)

Golden-crowned Kinglet, carved by Bob Spear. Photograph © copyright E. Talmage for the Birds of Vermont Museum
Golden-crowned Kinglet, carved by Bob Spear. Photograph © copyright E. Talmage for the Birds of Vermont Museum

October is one of our favorite months. It’s not that there’s a larger diversity of birds (that’s June), but it’s the month with the Big Sit! For us that means birders, friends (some of course are both!), birding, relaxing, bird-friendly coffee, conversation, and probably too many cider doughnuts.

 

Continue reading “Through the Window: October 2021 (and Big Sit)”

Race Around Birds 2021

A trail map showing the route and laps for the Race Around Birds.

The Birds of Vermont Museum is hosting the second annual Race Around Birds trail run! There are two options for runners (and walkers), and you can even do both:

Race Day run: Saturday, November 6th, at 10a.m. This is a typical trail run, although there is both a one-lap and two-lap option. We can welcome up to 50 runners.

On-Your-Own (Virtual) Race: choose a day between October 23 and November 5th, run one or two laps, and record your time on the paper forms (available at the Museum’s front door).

Race results are in, and posted in our blog.

To Register

While registering is free, we encourage donations to cover the cost of post-race snacks and water. You may register for Race Day (group race), Virtual (self-timed) race, or both.


Course Description

This is a trail race with some steep uphill climbs. Some segments are more like single-track mountain trails. This is a HARD course.

One lap or two? There are two options, short and long, using the same course (trails): a one-lap 3.6-mile race, and a two-lap 7.2-mile race. (Distances are approximate.)

The course is well-marked and you will return to the Museum in the middle of each lap. There are no supplies and no first aid stations on the course. Bathrooms and water are available only if the Museum is open (Wednesdays through Sundays, 10am – 4pm, in October only).

The course is essentially a loop on each side of the road. Think of it as a figure 8 (although the loop on the north side of the creek is more convoluted than a simple loop).

If you are doing the short race, you will run the course once (lap one uses  green numbers on the map). For the longer race, you cover the course twice, but on the second pass you run the opposite direction (lap two is labelled in purple on the map).

How It Works

You may run or walk the course.

On the November 6th Race Day, runners will start at 10 a.m.

For the On-Your-Own (Virtual) Race, runners and walkers may come to the Museum at any time from daylight to dusk from October 23 to November 5. No dogs and no nights. You may run (or walk) the course multiple times on different days, in order to improve your times, and you may enter both the short (one-lap) and long (two-lap) race. You may run in groups of up to three or four.

For this option, you will keep track of your own start and finish times. Time-keeping forms will be in a marked box to the left of the Museum’s front door. Fill out a form for each day you race. Then, when you’re ready to run, take a map (if you needed), get to the start line (the west end of the parking lot by the parking sign),  mark your starting time, and GO! Afterward, fill in your finish time (you’ll finish on the other side of the road) and drop it in the box.

If you are running on Race Day, please carpool. We have limited parking.

But wait, there’s more!

If you share photos or comments online, we encourage you to use these hashtags:
#RaceAroundBirds #RaceAroundBirds2021 #birdsofvermontmuseum #runningisforthebirds #trailrace #virtualrace #huntingtonvt #trailrunning #trailrunner

Send questions to trailrunning@birdsofvermont.org!

Printable race packets (trail map, course notes, entry form, waiver) are available as PDFs:

the Big Sit!

A Stanley brand 25' metal measuring tape; a pair of black binoculars; a bag of Birds and Beans coffee (scarlet tanager dark roast). All three item are line d up on a wooden railing, with green foliage behind them.

The most relaxed birding around. And around and around …

How many birds can we identify from a 17-foot diameter circle from sunrise to sunset? Can we beat last year’s record?

This is a great long-running community science project. Pledges and donations welcome.

We are observing from Dawn to Dusk. The Museum is open from 10am – 4pm. Masks required when inside the Museum, and recommended when less that 6 feet apart outdoors.

Call or email to ask about joining the observation team.

For much more info, see https://www.thebigsit.org/ .

Check out the reports from previous years: 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019

several birders standing during a Big Sit event
What is it? Birders focus during the Big Sit.

Through the Window: November 2020

Fox Sparrow (woodcarving by Bob Spear)Well, we’d hoped to be open on weekends on November, but due to more coronavirus cases, we went straight to “by appointment” only. A bit disappointing for us and (we hope) you! Still, we kept refilling the museum feeders and watched birds when we took a break from prepping the next newsletter and other behind-the-scenes things.

Which of these birds have been to your feeders?
Continue reading “Through the Window: November 2020”

Through the Window: October 2020

Ruffed Grouse in fall Crabapple tree
Ruffed Grouse in crab-apple tree in fall.

Who went running in the Race Around Birds? Did you see any birds while you did? It’s a hard race they say*, and pretty tricky to bird at the same time! So we offered a walking option, and two of the walkers observed a Hermit Thrush, and three walkers spotted a Ruffed Grouse.

Take another walk this month: it’s stick season now and although activity is low, visibility through the forest is good. Or stay cozy at our viewing window…you might see some of the ones we did last month.

Continue reading “Through the Window: October 2020”

the Big Sit!

several birders standing during a Big Sit event

The most relaxed birding around. And around and around …
How many birds can we identify from a 17-foot diameter circle from sunrise to sunset? Can we beat last year’s record?

This is a great long-running community science project! Pledges and donations welcome. RSVP to ask about joining the observation team. We are observing from Dawn to Dusk. Masks and social distancing required.

For much more info, see https://www.thebigsit.org/ or our report from last year ( https://www.birdwatchersdigest.com/bwdsite/connect/bigsit/bigsit-2019/stats.php?find_type=circle&find=BOVM ) or our reports from 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018