Home - Aroostook County, Maine


WE'VE MOVED!


Please visit the NEW Aroostook Birders website at:


www.AroostookBirders.com


We are still spiffing up the new site and changing some 

of our content and structure, but join us there for news, 

events and our growing photo galleries. 


We'd love to ADD YOUR PHOTOS to our new 

galleries, so please email photos in JPG format with as much

information as possible to identify the bird, location, date 

taken and contributing photographer.







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March 9, 2016 at 7:00 pm

Presque Isle DEP building

1235 Central Drive


"Aroostook Birders Annual 
Slide Show and Pot Luck!"


We all know that birds of a feather flock together, so come join us for an evening of

 show and tell! Bring one of your very best bird photos of the year and a 

dish to add to our pot luck supper. 

I seem to remember something about Bill making chili, 

and Judy is thinking about a yummy dessert. I may have to make some of my 

grandma's southern jalapeno cornbread! 

See you there!

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January 20, 2016 at 7 p.m.
University of Maine Presque Isle 
Folsom Hall (at north end of the campus) - Room 301
"From 1880 to Present: A Look at UMPI's Ornithology Teaching Collection"

Dr. Jason Johnston, associate professor of Biology and ornithologist at the University of Maine at Presque Isle, will give a presentation. He will display the teaching collection of birds for us to study up close. There will be a good diversity of birds on display and a discussion of collection and preservation methods.
All are welcome!
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The Annual Christmas Bird Count was a huge success thanks to YOU! Great appreciation goes out to all who shared their time in Caribou and Presque Isle this season. Some folks hit the road alone, some in small groups, and there were some counting from the feeders at home. 
Thank you!
Reports coming soon...


Tomorrow is the big day!
Presque Isle, Maine
Audubon Christmas Bird Count
 January 1, 2016! 
We will meet at 6:45 am at Tim Horton's 
on Maine Street in Presque Isle to begin the count.

Until then, enjoy this great article about our very own local wildlife whisperer/photographer!
http://www.barcroft.tv/man-grouse-best-friends-maine-usa



Our Caribou area bird count last Saturday was a success! We all covered a lot of ground and saw many species of birds. The weather was gorgeous most of the morning, and the scenes along our route were breathtaking. 


Tree sparrows spotted by Paul Cyr

***Next UP!***

Presque Isle, Maine
Audubon Christmas Bird Count
 January 1, 2016! 
We will meet at 6:45 am at Tim Horton's 
on Maine Street in Presque Isle to begin the count.

We will break up into groups, assign coverage areas
and begin. Our day will end with a group supper at 
Oriental Pearl Restaurant at 745 Maine Street.
Please join us!
_________________________
January 20, 2016 at 7 p.m.
University of Maine Presque Isle 
Folsom Hall (at north end of the campus) - Room 301
"From 1880 to Present: A Look at UMPI's Ornithology Teaching Collection"
Dr. Jason Johnston, associate professor of Biology and ornithologist at the University of Maine at Presque Isle, will give a presentation. He will display the teaching collection of birds for us to study up close. There will be a good diversity of birds on display and a discussion of collection and preservation methods.
All are welcome!

_____________________________________

SAVE THE DATE!
February 10, 2016 at 7 p.m.

Presque Isle DEP building
1235 Central Drive

"Aroostook Birders Annual 
Slide Show and Pot Luck!"

We all know that birds of a feather flock together, so come join us for an evening of show and tell! Bring one of your very best bird photos of the year and a 
dish to add to our pot luck supper. 
I seem to remember something about Bill making chili, 
and Judy is thinking about a yummy dessert. I may have to make some of my 
grandma's southern jalapeno cornbread! 
See you there!

____________________________________

It's time again for the
Annual Audubon Christmas Bird Count!
Will you join us?
Bohemian Waxwings as seen on our early November group outing to St. Agatha.

CARIBOU, MAINE — On Saturday, December 19th, area birders will continue a long-standing holiday tradition — the Caribou Audubon Christmas Bird Count. This count will be followed by the Presque Isle Area Audubon Christmas Bird Count on January 1st. We need all hands on deck!

Organizers say they welcome volunteers to help with counting birds. According to club president and count coordinator, Bill Sheehan, all with an interest are invited to join in for all or part of the day, and new birders can usually be paired with an experienced volunteer to help with identification and rules.

“We hope beginning birders and more experienced folks who have never participated in a Christmas Bird Count will come out to give it a try,” says Sheehan. “It couples outdoor activity with a chance to learn about our local birdlife. Plus, you’re contributing to monitoring efforts and the conservation of birds.”

Count rules are simple. Field volunteers cover assigned areas and count all wild birds seen, with feeder watchers recording birds visiting home feeders in the 24-hour period. At the end of the day, counters meet up, compare notes and compile a master list. 

Bill notes following the 2014 counts: “Two weeks ago in Caribou, we had 40 different species for the day, 10 higher than that area’s previous record with a good mix of waterfowl, fruit eaters, boreal birds and southern species such as cardinals and white-breasted nuthatches. I didn’t expect it, but we had a record breaking count.”

To participate in the Caribou or Presque Isle area Audubon Christmas Bird Count, contact Bill.j.Sheehan@gmail.com. For further information and updates, check back at the Aroostook Birders' website, visit us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter @AroostookBirder.



Farewell!
Last summer Aroostook Birders club lost its Publicity Chair when Sue Pinette moved south with her husband Bob to the Brunswick area.  Everyone who enjoyed the colorful and informative AB Newsletters that Sue produced every couple months knows what a great asset she was for the club.  Sue was instrumental in "spreading the word" and kept track of most of the logistical details that went into the many birdwalks, programs and events that Aroostook Birders Club put on over the past few years.  We'll miss both Bob and Sue, but they are getting settled and promise to have us down for a birding expedition sometime soon!  Many thanks to both for all the hard work and energy they put into Aroostook Birders Club in its early years!


Welcome to our new 2015-2017 Club Officers:

Judy Roe moves from Secretary to VP

Diane Shaw of Presque Isle - new Secretary

Scott Belair of Bridgewater - new Membership Chair


Many, many thanks to our outgoing executive board members Russell Mount (Vice President) and Bob Pinette (Membership) who've served in their positions for four years and were instrumental in launching our fledgling birding club. You will be missed! 



Recent Events

 Northern Waterthrush were abundant along the Perham Bog Trail on the May 16 trip.  Below, After reaching Salmon Brook Lake, the group spotted a pair of American Bitterns and a moose.


Birders on the May 9 Nordic Heritage Center Walk were treated to spectacular views from the peak of the mountain. A total of 19 species were sighted including Black-throated greens and this Black-throated blue warbler coming in for a landing. (see photo below by Omar Morales) 

Fort Fairfield's April 25 Waterfowl Walk chalked up 24 different species including some interesting ducks: American Wigeon, Wood, plus a Long-tailed Duck seen earlier by Paul Cyr. Photograph courtesy of Kathy Olmstead.

Bill introduces Dr. Jason Johnston (pictured seated at right), who on Feb. 26,  presented "Forest, Food & Phenology: Research on Northern Maine Birds.  Photo courtesy of Tammy Kerekes



Dr. Jason Johnston, with student Dan Sheffield, nets a Gray Jay in the North Maine Woods, T11 R8, as part of his recent research on food use by forest birds.



Audubon Christmas Bird Counts - Results

On Sunday, Dec. 14, seventeen birders spent the day counting birds on the CARIBOU/LIMESTONE CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT. Weather was overcast, warm — generally good conditions with about 10 inches of snow on the ground. Ponds/wetlands still had ice, but earlier warm temps had cleared streams and rivers. The diversity of species and the numbers of individuals of uncommon species were exceptional.  We had 40 different species (five which we’d never previously found), the highest number ever in the five-year history of the Caribou count. Most interesting to me was there were 23 species which we had highest numbers of individuals ever on the count.  I suspect open conditions, abundance of food/fruit, influx of irruptive species and probably the earlier date, all contributed.

We had a really good Jan. 3, 2015 PRESQUE ISLE CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT. Most notable was all the help we had — a record 37 birders with 27 making it out in the field!  As for the birds, we had lower numbers of total individuals but our diversity (40 species) was second highest ever, plus sighted a Carolina Wren at a feeder the days before and after!  Would have be a first-ever species for us!  Other note-worthy’s: highest ever counts of Mallards, Wild Turkeys and Downy Woodpeckers, our second-ever Merlin, plus three “pretty spiffy” Snowy Owls and the first Brown-headed Cowbirds seen on the count in 25 years. Also, finches did well with seven species.






"A Few Birds of Mongolia, and other things..."

A Black Kite flies over the Eg River in Mongolia. Photographed by UMPI Professor David Putnam who will present "A Few Birds of Mongolia, and other things..."  Last summer, Dave and his son Aaron traveled through western Mongolia collecting geological samples. But, of course,  they didn't ignore the birds!

Birding in the Gulf of Mexico
A Crested Caracara - photographed by Tammy (Morris) Kerekes while in southern Texas this past April. She and Dennis gave a presentation on their Gulf of Mexico birding trip at our November club meeting.


Wear Your Aroostook Birders Pride! 
Dennis Shepler models one of our Aroostook Birders knit caps. (Could this be a selfie, Dennis?) Contact Bill if you'd like to purchase one of your very own.
Other AB logo items available through Cushman's in Presque Isle. 


PHOTO ABOVE: - showing hundreds of migrating Snow Geese, was taken by club member Shawn Morneault on an early October trip to Lac Temiscouata, Quebec (35 mi. NW of Edmundston), just north of us here in Aroostook County.



Long Lake/Sinclair November Birding Trip


An enthusiastic group of birders toured Long Lake on Sept. 27, 2014, where geese and Great Blue Herons were plentiful. Photo of the east shore by Jessica Dube


Lake Josephine's evening birders were well pleased with the 38 different species. Highlights included an American Bittern, three young Red-headed Ducks and an appearance by Common Nighthawks. photo courtesy of Tammy Morris 


Visiting select birding sights, including the Fort Kent Block House, on our August 2, 2014, field trip to far northern Maine.

Birders enjoyed a well-shaded stroll on wetland trails in Fort Kent.


Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge - Limestone: was the location for  Northern Maine Bird Festival -- June 7, 2014

Most would agree the premiere of the Northern Maine Bird Festival, a cooperative effort of Aroostook Birders and Friends of the ARONWR, was a huge success.  Approximately 200 people - many families with children - attended the day's events. Over fifty different species of birds were sighted.
And the weather was superb!

Wildlife Ecology Professor Dr. Jason Johnston with "a bird in hand" at the netting and banding demonstration.

Friends of the Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge provided plenty of raw materials and expertise for the birdhouse building station.

One of three live owls on display before the crowd at Chewonki Foundation's "Owls of Maine" presentation.

A close-up view of Chewonki's Great Horned Owl. Photo by Shawn Morneault 

Falconer Dennis Kerekes of Hodgdon with his hunting partner, a female Northern Goshawk in juvenile plumage. Photo courtesy of Dee Hawksley

 
Maine Inland Fisheries & Wildlife Biologist Amanda DeMusz spoke on April 17 to our group about the natural history, management, and most unusual courting behavior of Maine's American Woodcock. (see Woodcock trip details, May 15, ANWR).

Connie McLellan and Ron Gallagher open a box for cleaning on the March 1 Duck Box Day outing at Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge in Limestone.

 A female Northern Pintail photographed recently among the Mallards and Blacks in the small area of open water at the hospital pond in Presque Isle.

Presque Isle Count - Dec. 28, 2013 ~ Caribou/Limestone Count Jan. 4, 2014 



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below: Bill explains the difference between various seeds at the Jan. 11, Wild Bird Feeding Workshop held cooperatively with Friends of the Aroostook National Wildlife Refuge.

 

Below: Aroostook Falconry was the topic of a Nov. 21 presentation by Dennis Kerekes and photographer Tammy Morris - shown here with Dennis' latest hunting partner, a young female Northern Goshawk.

 
Wild Goose Chase II, was held Sat., Oct. 19, 2013
The highlight of Saturday's trip was a rare Pink-footed Goose along with six Snow Geese spotted among the 1200-plus Canada Geese in Collins Pond.
(See photos below, and trip summary under "Local Birding News")

 

The group's youngest birders zooming in on a group of Greater Yellowlegs at Collins Pond

 

 

 

Hawk Watch at Haystack Mountain near Mapleton, Sept. 21, 2013

 
 
 
 
 
Inland Fisheries & Wildlife Biologist Danielle D'Auria's
presentation: Maine's Herons & Cranes - Sept. 19, 2013 

 
 
 
 Photos: Downeast Trip to Lubec & Moosehorn Refuge- July 27-28, 2013
(for further details, see writeup in "Local Birding News")

  

 


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 Photos: Birding at Lake Josephine & Christina Reservoir in Easton
with ornithologist Jon Greenlaw August 7, 2013
(for further details, see writeup in "Local Birding News")

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 For more information about northern Maine's wayward White Pelican, see
"Local Birding News" and "AB News & Newsletters" - Volume 15
 

Photo courtesy of Paul Cyr

Aroostook Birders provides:
  • Field trips and outdoor experiences
  • Opportunities to learn from others in the club
  • Regular meetings and educational programs
  • A network for current info about bird sightings in the region.
  • For members, a 10% discount on select bird seed, feeders and accessories at  S.W. Collins in Caribou, Presque Isle and Houlton.
     

Aroostook Birders
is a volunteer organization whose members share a passion for bird- watching and an

appreciation of northern Maine’s natural environment through field trips and educational programs.

Bird enthusiasts of all ages and ability levels are welcomed.