February 2024 Programs

Registration is required for all programs by emailing Susan at info@bedfordaudubon.org unless otherwise specified.

We have binoculars!
If you’d like to borrow a pair, please ask when you register.

, NYWondering where to find raptors in winter? Join our EagleWatch!
Take part in Science (and Advocacy) in Action this winter. Join Naturalist Tait Johansson and the team from Bedford Audubon and Saw Mill River Audubon for EagleWatch as we monitor roosting Bald Eagles within the Lower Hudson Valley to facilitate decision-making that impacts this Important Bird Area (IBA). This event is family-friendly—a fun way to introduce ecology to your kids!
Thursday late afternoons from January 11-February 15, approximately 1.5 hours before sunset. If you’re interested in checking it out, please email Tait.

Bedford Audubon’s Members’ Photo Exhibit Encore is on display in Larchmont.
Celebrating the Beauty and Diversity of Birds in our Region is a selection of bird photographs captured by Bedford Audubon members. The exhibit first opened in March 2023; with the support of our sister chapter, Bronx River Sound Shore Audubon, a winter showing of the exhibit will be on display at the Larchmont Public Library from through February 27, 2024. Click here for more details.

Soar on over to Croton Point Park for EagleFest!
Teatown’s annual Hudson River EagleFest celebrates the Bald Eagle’s winter migration to the lower Hudson Valley and its recovery from the brink of extinction because of chemicals like DDT. Bedford Audubon is thrilled to be a “collaborator” at this year’s event; be sure to stop by our table at the main Croton Point Park entrance to say hello. Tait will be there along with staff, volunteers, and board members throughout the day. The program for this all-day celebration includes thrilling live bird shows spotlighting birds of prey, bird walks where you can view eagles through spotting scopes, heated tents filled with educational displays and exhibits, crafts and games for children, food trucks, and more! Don’t miss this highly anticipated festival!
Saturday, February 3*, 9:00am-4:00pm. Croton Point Park, 1 Croton Point Avenue, Croton-on-Hudson. Visit the Eaglefest event page for more information and to purchase tickets. *Snow date is Sunday, February 4.

Let’s catch a thief – or at least a glimpse of one!
Bundle up and join Naturalist Tait Johansson for our First Wednesday’s Bird Walk at Dean’s Bridge in Somers where we’ll be on the lookout for Gadwall, dabbling ducks that sometimes steal food from other ducks. Other species we hope to see include Hooded Merganser, Golden-crowned Kinglet, and other waterfowl concentrated at the north end of Muscoot Reservoir. In the woodlands and the other habitats we walk through, we’ll be looking for Eastern Bluebird and Hermit Thrush among others.
Wednesday, February 7, 7:30-9:30am. Cost: Free. Level of Difficulty: Easy-Moderate (there is a steep incline on the trail). Email Susan to register.

Cornell Lab Merlin experts join with local birding experts see whether Merlin or humans can ID photos and sounds faster – and you can play along!
Join us on Zoom for Merlin Bird ID Trivia, a game focused on birds you might find during the 2024 Great Backyard Bird Count! The Merlin Bird ID app, developed by the Cornell Lab and powered by machine learning, will be put to the test. Can the app outperform an experienced birder and you, our live audience? Using photos and sounds, we’ll determine who can accurately identify the most bird species. This is an interactive game, so come ready to play! Throughout the game, we’ll explore how Merlin “decides” on an ID and our expert birders will share their advice on how to identify tricky birds based on calls and appearance. Organized by Saw Mill River Audubon, Bedford Audubon is excited to co-sponsor this event along with Bronx River-Sound Shore Audubon, Central Westchester Audubon, Hudson River Audubon, and Putnam Highlands Audubon.
Thursday, February 8, 7:00-8:30pm. Cost: Free. Register for the Zoom link and reminders HERE.

The Second Continental Congress selected the Bald Eagle as the U. S. National Symbol on June 20, 1782, and some are right here in our backyard!
Last year our eagle trips were so popular we’re once again offering two chances to join Naturalist Tait Johansson on his Hudson River Eagle Trip in search of Bald Eagles. Whether it’s your first or 101st time, seeing this national symbol is always a thrill, and the stretch of the Hudson River that borders northwestern Westchester holds the largest concentration of wintering Bald Eagles in the Northeast north of Chesapeake Bay. The river and its banks provide food and nesting opportunities which will give us the chance to spot these majestic raptors along the river at multiple stops from Peekskill to Croton Point. Choose an afternoon trip (where we may be lucky enough to observe eagles as they return to their roosting sites at dusk) or a morning trip:
Saturday February 10, 1:00-5:00pm and Tuesday, February 13, 9:30am-1:00pm. Cost: Free. Level of Difficulty: Easy. Email Susan to register. Please specify which trip you will be joining when you register.

At over 4,000 acres, Ward Pound Ridge Reservation is Westchester County’s largest park, and it’s located in the heart of the Bedford Audubon community.
Happy Valentine’s Day! Who needs to go out for an expensive dinner when you and your special someone can join us for free at Katonah Village Library! No date? No worries – you’re even more welcome to spend your evening with us. We’re pleased to welcome Patty Butter for our February Public Lecture to talk about the Flora Project at Ward Pound Ridge Reservation. Patty will introduce some of the special plants that her team’s first year of field study is revealing. Learn how the study is conducted and what local plant communities are telling us about the geology and ecology of this remarkable Westchester County Park.
Patricia Butter is a Botanist and Garden Manager/Educator at The Native Plant Center at Westchester Community College. She is currently conducting floras of the Ward Pound Ridge Reservation and The Rockefeller State Park Preserve. She holds certificates in Botany from the New York Botanical Garden, and Sustainable Gardening with Native Plants from Go Native U at WCC, as well as a BFA from Pratt Institute.
Wednesday, February 14, 7:00pm; refreshments at 6:45pm. Katonah Village Library. Cost: Free. Registration is not needed.

Per unit weight, the Winter Wren delivers its song with 10 times more power than a crowing rooster.
Join us to look for this little bird that weighs in between 0.3-0.4 oz. on Naturalist Tait Johansson’s Third Thursday Bird Walk on Maple Avenue in Katonah. It’s difficult to predict what we might find, but there’s always a fairly good chance of Bald Eagles and Common Ravens! If there’s any open water – meaning the reservoir isn’t completely frozen – we should also see water birds such as Bufflehead, Cormorants and Common Merganser, and up in the trees maybe a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker (we saw one in January!), Brown Creeper, Eastern Towhee, and Winter Wren.
Thursday, February 15, 7:30-9:30am. Cost: Free. Level of Difficulty: Easy. Email Susan to register.

You’re invited to Bylane Farm for an experiential learning session…
Join Naturalist and Board Member Steve Ricker for Habitat Renewal Day as we work to rescue native Highbush Blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum) and Sweetfern (Comptonia peregrina) from being smothered by Multiflora Rose (Rosa multiflora) and other invasive species. This will enhance the quality of the rare shrub habitat that surrounds the Bylane Farm area and make it more attractive to many increasingly rare bird species like Brown Thrashers (Toxostoma rufum) and Blue-winged Warblers (Vermivora cyanoptera). At the start of the session, Steve will provide tips to discern native plants from invasives and will be happy to answer questions as we work. After last month’s weather cancellation, we’re excited to get outside this month and tackle the work we had planned for January. We’d love to see some new faces – and welcome old friends as we work together to improve habitat for birds and other wildlife!
Saturday, February 17, 11:00am-12:30pm. Cost: Free. Level of Difficulty: Easy-Moderate. Email Susan to register. Tools and gloves will be provided, or you can bring your own (loppers and hand pruners are the most used tools). Plants with thorns, and poison ivy may be present.