All Aboard Summer Ecocruises to the Harbor Heron Islands!
Experience the wonders of New York's famous harbor at sunset—and visit some of the harbor’s best kept secrets and proudest conservation stories on NYC Audubon’s Sunset Ecocruises to the Harbor Heron Islands. Get up close and personal with some of the 3,000 herons, egrets, and ibis nesting on these lush islands right here in the City’s harbor.
Led by Gabriel Willow, the tours sail from South Street Seaport Pier 16 Sundays through August 16, alternating between three different routes: Sail up the East River to the fascinating Brother Islands, under the Verrazano Bridge to the egret rookeries of Hoffman and Swinburne Islands—or out to the wild expanses of Jamaica Bay National Wildlife Refuge.
Governor Cuomo Announces New
Lights Out New York Initiative
Marking a victory for New York State's migratory birds, Governor Cuomo's office has announced a new Lights Out New York initiative, which will bring migrant-friendly practices promoted by NYC Audubon’s Lights Out program to all state-owned properties across New York State. Thanks to efforts by Audubon New York in Albany, state-owned and managed buildings will turn off non-essential outdoor lighting from 11pm to dawn during peak spring and fall migration. Read more here.
The Governor's office also launched www.iloveny.com/birding, which will provide visitors with information on birding and how to participate in the new Lights Out initiative.
First New York City Bald Eagle Nest
in Over 200 Years Confirmed
New York City Audubon is very happy to report that a nesting pair of Bald Eagles has been confirmed on the South Shore of Staten Island. The female eagle appears to be incubating eggs, according to local Staten Island birders, who have nicknamed the birds “Vito and Linda.” The presence of breeding Bald Eagles in New York City is a testament to the success of the environmental conservation movement in cleaning up New York's waterways and wild habitats, and is cause to celebrate for all New Yorkers.
Following an unusual winter during which Bald Eagles were spotted in all five boroughs of the City, a pair of eagles was reported to be nest-building off of Staten Island’s north shore in early February. This pair did not stay to breed, but a second pair on the South Shore has now “stuck the landing.” After building a “practice nest” at the site in 2014, the birds returned this spring to a New York State Department of Environmental Conservation property on Staten Island's South Shore. (The exact site is undisclosed, in order to protect the birds from disturbance.)
NYC Audubon is thrilled that America’s iconic national bird is staying to nest within the five boroughs, for the first time in as much as a century. The presence of Bald Eagles in New York City is a testament to the success of the environmental conservation movement in cleaning up New York's waterways and habitats, and in banning environmental contaminants, particularly DDT in 1972. Only one pair of eagles was known to nest in all of New York State in 1960, compared to 173 pairs counted in 2010—and the population is growing. The eagles’ decision to stay and breed in New York City is a reminder that when ecosystems are healthy, wildlife returns. Bald Eagles are back—for now—and New Yorkers should celebrate, cherish, and continue to protect them.
Of note from the NY State DEC: “If you see someone harassing or injuring an eagle, or if you spot destruction of eagle habitat or find an injured or dead eagle, report it at once to DEC's Wildlife Diversity Unit, 625 Broadway, Albany, NY 12233-4754, 518-402-8920.” More on the NYS DEC's Bald Eagle Program can be found at http://www.dec.ny.gov/animals/9381.html.
Top Banner Photo Credits: Atlantic puffins © U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service*; group of birders © Kati Solomon; all others © Francois Portmann.
Bottom Photo Credits: Big Brown Bat © Angell Williams.
* This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License, available at creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0.
Twilight Bat and Insect Walks in Central Park
Tuesdays, July 14-August 11
Guide: Paul Keim
Explore the mysteries of Central Park at twilight as we seek these fascinating and misunderstood flying mammals—and learn about their great importance to our environment. We'll see local bat species in flight as they hunt and dive for insects, and hear them with an echolocator. Other nocturnal creatures like crickets and katydids may be seen as well.
Be a part of Project Safe Flight by Using Our New Online Database, D-Bird, Now Mobile-Friendly!
D-Bird, our crowd-sourced bird mortality data collection tool, has received a major update! Now it is possible to quickly and easily send reports to D-bird from any mobile device. Visitors to the desktop version of D-Bird will also notice the reporting form has received a facelift – the data entry process is now more streamlined and intuitive.
If you find a dead or injured bird, you can make a valuable contribution to Project Safe Flight by providing us with information about the bird at www.d-bird.org. To see an interactive map of D-Bird results and to learn more about Project Safe Flight, please click here.
This work is a component of Project Safe Flight, part of our broader effort generously supported by the Leon Levy Foundation to make the City a safer place for birds.
Visit NYC Audubon's blog, Syrinx, to see current updates on our work.