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Backyard Treasures

Pair of Bald Eagles in a NestIt's a great time of year to go for a bird walk. Bare branches and a quieter environment can reveal many backyard treasures. Michele sent us some fantastic pictures of a pair of bald eagles she discovered nesting in a tree near her home! And remember, our Sanctuary Trails are open for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing (pictured below).

Snowshoeing at Sanctuary

Bird-Friendly Foods

“Sustainability” is a powerful word in the food industry these days. A recent survey of millennial coffee consumers found that “sustainably sourced” is the top factor that would drive them to pay more for a cup of coffee. Birds also stand to benefit from this burgeoning trend in sustainable food production. There are foods and beverages that—through sustainable growing or business operations—are improving habitat for people and birds on Earth. From coffee to beer, check out these 7 bird-friendly foods.

 

Picture of the Sanctuary

Chemung Valley Audubon Society invites you outdoors! With many residents feeling a get-out-of-the-house eagerness after enduring months of isolation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CVAS urges you to consider the benefits of taking a hike. Over the past several years the local Audubon chapter has developed two properties in Steuben County (Northrup Hill & Gleason), as well as a trail at Mark Twain State Park in Chemung County, where you can enjoy outdoor experiences while still following social distancing guidelines.

Hiking and wildlife watching are good for our bodies and our sense of well-being. CVAS invites people to use the trails and to enjoy the beauty and spectacle of wild nature in the Southern Tier. “Birding is an inexpensive, healthful, always entertaining outdoor activity that heightens one’s awareness and understanding of the environment and can be done anytime, anywhere,” noted Bill Ostrander. A lifelong birder and Chemung County resident, Ostrander leads Audubon walks that help people learn about and enjoy our area’s birds.

ButterflyNorthrup Hill Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary is a 24-acre preserve on Learn Road in the Town of Rathbone, Steuben County. The sanctuary’s wildlife habitats including grasslands, early-successional hardwoods, and a white pine–hemlock–hardwood forest that slopes downhill to a wetland. At an elevation of 1,700 feet, the property commands stunning views of the surrounding countryside. The land was given to CVAS as a gift from the Northrup family to be used as a nature preserve. The Northrup Hill Schoolhouse, a structure on the National Register of Historic Places, sits adjacent to the preserve.

The Gleason Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary covers 35-acres on Kelly Hill Road in the Steuben County Town of Caton. It is predominately forested, with a system of trails that passes through groves of hemlocks, pines, and northern hardwoods. A pond and small intermittent streams enhance the sanctuary’s value to plants and animals. The property was acquired with a bequest from the estate of long-time CVAS members Herbert and Virginia Gleason.

Driving directions and information about the trails are on our Northrup, Gleason, and Mark Twain State Park pages. Our trails and activities are open to all regardless of their age, race, religion, ability or gender identity.

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Northrup Hill Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary

In 2016, volunteers donated over 500 hours of their time for the restoration of our Northrup Hill Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary in Rathbone, Steuben County.

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Gleason Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary

Our 30-acre preserve in the Town of Caton, NY, beckons to all nature-lovers with its dozens of tree species and hundreds of animal and flower species.

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CVAS Monthly Meeting

Join us on Zoom for a lively discussion about birding and a presentation from one of our knowledgeable hosts. A bird identification workshop begins at 7:00pm, and the program begins at 7:30pm. All are welcome to these free events. CVAS is committed to increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion in our conservation and education programs and to welcoming all who wish to work and learn with us. Any person, regardless of age, race, religion, ability, or gender identity, who is interested in wild life study, protection, and conservation, may be enrolled as a member upon receipt of the first payment of dues. To receive a link to the meeting, please e-mail Gail Norwood.

7:00pm | Thursday | February 18
Protecting the Lands and Waters We Love: 2021 Challenges and Solutions with Guest Speaker, Andy Zepp (ED, Finger Lakes Land Trust)

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Community Programs

Our free, family-friendly Nature Strollers program runs from May to December, and we hope you'll join us for this and our other popular programs throughout the year, including:

Bird Sleuth | A lively program for school-aged children that teaches key concepts, including diversity, adaptations, food webs, and more, through hands-on learning.

CVAS Book Club | The CVAS book club meets on Thursdays. For meeting information and a list of the books we'll be reading, please click here.

CVAS is committed to increasing diversity, equity, and inclusion in our conservation and education programs and to welcoming all who wish to work and learn with us.

Native Plants for Your Home and Garden

Bring birds and pollinators to your home today by growing native plants. Find the best plants for the pollinators and birds for your yard. Growing bird-friendly plants will attract and protect the birds you love while making your space beautiful, easy to care for, and better for the environment. Explore native plant resources by clicking the link below.

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National Audubon Society

Chemung Valley Audubon Society is a chapter of the National Audubon Society. The NAS is an invaluable resource for any Audubon enthusiast.