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Birding Extravaganza 2018

Spotting birds at Curtis Farm Preserve (Curt Chipman photo)

In its sixth year, bird watchers of all capabilities are welcomed to attend the Birding Extravaganza, a series of free birding excursions supported by four conservation organizations in Midcoast Maine. Merrymeeting Audubon, Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust, Harpswell Heritage Land Trust and Kennebec Estuary Land Trust have planned an array of experiences to spot and study a wide range of birds, as well as learn from expert birders.

The annual series has become popular with local birders of all ages and experience levels. It is a great way to check out the partnering land trusts’ preserves and trails. The protected areas of the three land trusts cover thirteen towns in a region known as a global hotspot for migratory birds.

All walks are free and open to the public, though some require advance registration.

Birding at Sewall Woods Preserve

Sat., April 28, 8 a.m.  *  Kennebec Estuary Land Trust’s Sewall Woods Preserve, Bath

Join Merrymeeting Audubon’s Ted Allen for a birding walk at Kennebec Estuary Land Trust’s Sewall Woods Preserve. The group will hike along Whiskeag Creek, a tidal influenced stream that flows into the Kennebec River. Birders will seek migrating waterfowl including Canada geese, black ducks, mallards, blue- and green-winged teal and common mergansers. Participants can meet at 7:30 a.m. at the CVS in Bath to carpool. FMI: Ted Allen, 207-729-8661.

Birding at Bradley Pond Farm

Tues., May 8, 8 a.m.  *  Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust’s Bradley Pond Farm, Topsham

Join John Berry on a walk through fields and woods with glimpses of Bradley Pond. We’ll focus on spring migrants: warblers, flycatchers, blackbirds, vireos, sparrows, and an occasional raptor. Bring your binoculars, and meet at the second parking lot at Bradley Pond Farm. FMI: www.btlt.org.

Birding at Curtis Farm Preserve

Wed., May 9, 7:30-9 a.m. * Harpswell Heritage Land Trust’s Curtis Farm Preserve, 1554 Harpswell Neck Road, Harpswell * Space is limited and advance registration is required. Click here to register.

Join us for a birding walk at Harpswell Heritage Land Trust’s Curtis Farm Preserve. John Berry will lead participants through fields and forest to look and listen for a wide range of spring birds. Find out why local birders come back again and again to this birding hotspot. Bring binoculars and sturdy walking shoes. FMI: Julia McLeod, outreach@hhltmaine.org, 207-837-9613.

Birding at Crystal Spring Farm

Thurs., May 10 and Fri., May 11, 7:30 a.m.  * Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust’s Crystal Spring Farm, Pleasant Hill Road, Brunswick

Join Jan Pierson for the popular annual outing to Brunswick-Topsham Land Trust’s Crystal Spring Farm in Brunswick. This walk is through a variety of habitats, including fields, forests, and wetland. We hope to see sparrows, bluebirds, bobolinks, and several species of warblers. Bring your binoculars, and meet at Crystal Spring Farm’s Farmers’ Market Green on Pleasant Hill Road in Brunswick at 7:30 a.m. FMI: Lee Cataldo, lee@btlt.org, 207-729-7694.

Birding at Thorne Head Preserve

Sat., May 26, 8 a.m.  *   Kennebec Estuary Land Trust’s Thorne Head Preserve, Bath

Ted Allen from Merrymeeting Audubon will lead birders through the Kennebec Estuary Land Trust’s Thorne Head Preserve. Overlooking Whiskeag Creek as it converges with the Kennebec River, the preserve is located on the Maine Birding Trail and is rich in migrating warblers and vireos. Participants can meet at 7:30 a.m. at the CVS in Bath to carpool. FMI: Ted Allen, 207-729-8661.​

Intro to Birding for Adults

Classroom presentation: Thursday, June 14, 6:30-8 p.m. at Harpswell Heritage Land Trust, 153 Harpswell Neck Road

Field trip: Saturday, June 16 (rain date June 17), 8-9:30 a.m., Harpswell location TBA

We ask that all those who attend the field trip also attend the classroom session. However, you are welcome to attend the classroom session only and skip the field trip. Space is limited and advance registration is required. Click here to register.

Perhaps you enjoy looking at the birds around your house – even putting out bird feeders to attract more birds. In time, though, you want to see some birds that never come to your feeder. Or maybe you just want an ‘excuse’ to explore Harpswell’s many beautiful trails. In either case, you’re not sure how to start being a ‘birder’? You see birders with all kinds of expensive equipment and ‘funny’ clothes, and it’s a bit intimidating. What equipment do I really need? Or maybe you’ve even done a little birding on and off, but would like to pick up some bird identification tips to make your outings even more fruitful. You know there are loads of books and apps to help identify birds, but which ones are best for a novice birder? This two session class led by Judy Marino is for you! The first meeting will be a classroom presentation, and the second meeting will be a field trip to a local site. FMI: Julia McLeod, outreach@hhltmaine.org, 207-837-9613.