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Photo by Daiga Ellaby via unsplash of adult and child wearing boots, standing on soil
Photo by Daiga Ellaby

Last week, we released Part Two of a mini-series about parents who bird on the Your Bird Story podcast. You will hear stories from Jen Kepler (Brooklyn, NYC) and Bryony Angell (Washington state). Bryony describes the episode:

“We talk about making the most of the immediate surroundings to bird, opportunistic birding and insistence to the birding community to make more space for caregivers or those with schedules or transportation challenges that do not fit the conventional schedule of board meetings, after work events, volunteer options etc in order to participate and add our voice.”

Listen to Parent Birders, Part 1, too, with Laurel and Ed, and Stephanie.

Most of the leaves of the deciduous trees have changed color and/or fallen. We monitor seasonal changes year round so we will take note of the absence of leaves, flowers, and fruits throughout the winter. Of the 11 trees we track, two of them still had leaves in the canopy on December 13, 2021. The ginkgo and the sweetgum each had a persisting single colored leaf!

Volunteers also monitor biological changes including students enrolled in a field methods course at NYU this fall. We surveyed the students about their monitoring experiences. One of the questions we asked wass, What do you enjoy most about observing your tree? Here are two responses:

“Starting to notice subtle changes week by week. It’s like building an intimate and ongoing relationship with the tree, it tells you its life story as its happening.”

“It’s actually interesting to see how the tree reacts to the changing seasons. Especially next to other trees. There is a silver maple right next to my tree which has many more colored leaves than my red maple, which has yet to produce a non negligible number of colored leaves.”

Would you like to “build an intimate and ongoing relationship” with a tree in the park? Volunteer to be a tree monitor!

We are proud to be a Christmas Bird Count site again this year. Join us for a collabirdtive excursion on Sunday, December 19, 3pm ET.

Save the dates for biodiversity counts in 2022:

Great Backyard Bird Count, Feb 18-21
City Nature Challenge, Apr 30-May 2