October is glorious! We started the month with the Dead Creek Wildlife festival, continued birding during the Big Sit!, admired pollinators on fall flowers like asters, explored and documented plants for the phenology project, and welcomed campers visiting through the Harvest Host program. We spent some time working on the Retreat, which we hope to open to overnighters sometime in the next year.
Of course, we have to sit down by the Viewing Window and just watch birds to recover from all of this.
As the risk of avian flu declined, we looked at the information out from Vermont Fish & Wildlife and Cornell Lab of Ornithology. We had been using the hummingbird feeders (they’re so territorial!); then we put out just the cylinder feeder late this month. Right away some of our “usual suspects” were at it!
It’s been a pleasant early summer month at the Birds of Vermont Museum. We’re continuing our Early Birder Morning Walks on Sundays, and had a new walk offered: “Tree IDs for Birders”. We even had a booksigning and a carving class!
Even though we’ve cut back on our feeding, we have still been able to enjoy spotting birds through our windows (and doors) at the Museum.
Still limiting feeding, although this month we saw so many birds that one might hardly have thought we were doing this! (Also, see below for why.)
We also noticed that at certain times of the day, the light hit the front door just right (or perhaps, just wrongly) to apparently encourage bird collisions. We have fixed this! (More on this below, too.)
Despite changing from regular feeding to a restricted type and amount (see below for why), we still enjoying observing birds through our window. Something about just sitting, watching, maybe taking notes or doing Feederwatch… this helped us get through a wicked bad mud season and a few April snowfalls.
March usually see us getting excited about what’s left to do before our drop-in season (May – October) and which migrants are passing by on their way further north (looking at you Fox Sparrow. Also mud. Sherman Hollow Road at the end of March this year was …. remarkable. Yet passable, unlike some other roads around the state. So we could keep feeding the birds.
By the way, Vermont Fish & Wildlife recommends taking in your bird feeders on April 1st, to avoid habituating bears to our spaces. Our feeders are 8′ off the ground on a steel pole set in concrete; it’s both bear resistant and not too much of a temptation. Bears learn quickly what’s out of reach and not worth the effort.
We like to hunker down in January a bit, watching the birds from the relative quiet of our offices.
However, it’s possible we get distracted from writing reports and making new library displays and planning the next art show and saying thanks to members and donors and finding out about bird codes and…