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Birding opportunities for all ages will be abundant during a spring walkabout at Riverfront Park in Bellows Falls on May 14.

Town and Village

Spring bird walk in Bellows Falls set for May 14

BELLOWS FALLS—Join local birders Jean Cannon and Peter Bergstrom for a bird walk at the Bellows Falls Historical Society Riverfront Park on Saturday, May 14, at 8 a.m., at the parking lot just below the Adams Grist Mill at 26 Mill St. (which looks like an alley off the south end of The Square, to the left of Flat Iron Co-op). The rain date is Sunday, May 15, at 8 a.m.

Bergstrom says he has recorded 87 bird species at the park in 184 eBird checklists since 2015, and 119 bird species have been seen at the park by all birders over the years.

Participants will watch and listen for colorful and tuneful spring birds that are common in May, such as the Baltimore oriole, warbling vireo, house wren, catbird, veery, wood thrush, chipping sparrow, rose-breasted grosbeak, yellow warbler, and American redstart.

Cannon and Bergstrom will demonstrate how to use the “Merlin” smartphone app to help ID birds, either by their size, colors, and habitat, or their songs and calls, as recorded by the app. Participants should download and install this app before the workshop if possible. Binoculars are also recommended.

Bergstrom says he will share a list he compiled of mnemonics (memory aids) for the songs and calls of some local birds, such as “ee-o-lay” (wood thrush) and “cheer-up; cheer-a-lee; cheer-ee-o” (rose-breasted grosbeak), and share other tips for “birding by ear.”

If the birds are scarce that day, he will point out historical features in the park, and the start of the Saxtons River Valley Trail.

Pre-registration is not required, but participants may contact Bergstrom at 802-444-1860 or for a list of the mnemonics to study before the walk, to ask questions, and to be notified whether the rain date is necessary.

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Originally published in The Commons issue #663 (Wednesday, May 11, 2022). This story appeared on page A8.

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