Observe Northern Saw-whet Owl banding at Rushton Farm and experience nature at night. These tiny owls (no bigger than a soda can) travel through Pennsylvania in the fall in search of ideal overwintering habitat. Learn all about their ecology and conservation from our field scientists and hopefully see an owl up-close.
Enjoy a morning of birding at Rushton Woods with expert birder, Debbie Beer. We will count birds in the tradition of the National Audubon Christmas Bird Count (CBC), which is the longest running wildlife survey in the world. We’ll also learn how to enter our sightings into eBird.
Bring a friend to the banding station anytime between the operating hours of 6am and 10:30am (arrive by 9 am) to observe the inspiring science of bird banding, meet field biologists and see beautiful migrant birds up close. Kids will also get to “practice their banding skills” at a demo net.
Join veteran hawk counter, educator, and birding instructor, Holly Merker, at the height of the fall migration. After her program about hawks, hawk watching, and hawk conservation at the Rushton Conservation Center, we’ll head over to a hawk watch platform at the local Okehocking Preserve. You’ll learn all about raptor identification and see migrating raptors like Red-shouldered hawk.
Come meet Willistown’s most colorful inhabitants up close. During the fall migration, you can observe the bird banding process and learn about the many and varied species that stop over at Rushton Woods Preserve during their arduous migration.
Please note the following:
- Banding is weather dependent. Banding may be canceled at any time with limited or no notice due to any one or more of the following weather factors: rain before a banding date, rain on a banding date, high winds.
- The banding station is entirely outdoors and you may have to walk through wet grass or mud to reach the station, please dress appropriately.
- Photography is permitted
- Video is prohibited
If you are interested in bringing a group to observe banding, please contact Lisa Kiziuk, Director of the Bird Conservation Program (firstname.lastname@example.org) to discuss arrangements.
Bird banding is an important and powerful scientific tool in bird conservation. Understanding our reasons for banding and being able to relate those reasons to the public, along with proper training and the maintenance of high scientific standards is necessary for the success of our banding/outreach program.
Rushton Woods Preserve (RWPR) lies within an Audubon Important Bird Area (IBA), offering a great opportunity for banding and allowing us to study the seasonal and long term population patterns and species diversity of migratory and breeding birds. The RWPR banding project contributes to continent-wide monitoring efforts and exemplifies the benefits of low-impact land management practices on bird populations.