Melanie Brocklehurst on Birds, Roots, and Connections
You can make a difference this spring!
I am a vagrant*, an accidental, well outside my native range. But I found I like it here. I’ve settled and made a home, and Bedford Audubon has become central to my sense of community, of belonging. It has rekindled a passion for nature that got lost during years spent working in London. Bedford Audubon has helped me to rediscover my love of the great outdoors.
The birds I grew up with are quite different, native as I am to the Garden of England: the county of Kent. A college field trip spent mapping the territories of the Common – or Eurasian – Blackbird (Turdus merula) left me unprepared for our Red-winged Blackbird. And I still confuse the Common Blackbird’s call with that of the American Robin, which in turn bears only a passing resemblance to the tiny Robin (Erithacus rubecula) that perched on my grandfather’s spade in the garden, hoping for a tasty worm.
My American nature journey began on one of Bedford Audubon’s Third Thursday walks with Naturalist Tait Johansson, and I have learned so much from Garden Director Mathew McDowell in the Leon Levy Native Garden (many of the plants and trees are so different from those across the Atlantic!). This path has continued through the range of lectures and workshops offered by Bedford Audubon, and by sharing a selection of books and conversation with members of the Bylane Book Club.
This spring, please donate to Bedford Audubon. Your contribution will provide the support needed to continue offering so many opportunities for our community to engage with birds, pollinators, and nature!
Bedford Audubon has its roots in a group of neighbors who shared an interest and passion, and that is still true today. Our community of staff, volunteers and members is open and welcoming, and I have enjoyed chatting on walks, swapping stories and experiences, and meeting so many people over the years I have been involved.
No matter your background, your heritage, your home territory, I would love to meet you on a walk, on a workshop, in the garden, or to share tea with you on the patio at Bylane. Bedford Audubon truly does connect us to nature, in all its glory, and I urge you to support us.
Please make a donation today so we can continue the great work that began when Bedford Audubon was founded back in 1913.
Program Committee Chair, Member, Volunteer
*Vagrant: A biological term for an individual animal (usually a bird) well outside its normal habitat range.