A group of wildlife researchers will meet with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in September to discuss a conservation plan for the saltmarsh sparrow. Studies show a sharp decline in their numbers in the last 15 years due largely to habitat loss from development, sea-level rise, and more frequent storm surges. Read more about SHARP (The Saltmarsh Habitat & Avian Research Program), a group of academic, governmental, and nonprofit collaborators gathering data to conserve tidal-marsh birds at http://www.tidalmarshbirds.org
See also the full story in the Bangor Daily News or the Portland Press Herald.
Researchers will compare the abundance of marsh plants and birds before and after Super Storm Sandy from Maine to Virginia.
Science on the marsh!
Plant and Insect Biodiversity Day
Join local experts on August 10 from 9 - Noon and survey the marsh for the many different types of plants and insects, including butterflies. We will have a training session before we head out. Participants can choose plants or insects to survey. After the surveys the two groups will reconvene and discuss their results. The data collected will be compared to previous surveys and will serve as an indicator of the health of the marsh.
Important Bird Area Survey
Want to do some birding at Maine's premier birding spot and help gather data on Maine's first Important Bird Area? Join us on August 24 from 9 - Noon for a marsh-wide survey of birds to document the numbers of individuals and species. Timed to catch the beginning of shorebird migration, each group of monitors will be assigned a portion of the marsh to survey. Depending on the assignment, surveys may be done on foot, by car or from a canoe (provided at the marsh or bring your own), and could last up to several hours. Beginning birders are welcome! The morning will start with a brief introduction to the marsh and the survey methods, and after that, monitors will disburse to their assigned sections.
Both of these volunteer monitoring projects are made possible through a grant from the Prout's Neck Association to Maine Audubon. Please call Scarborough Marsh Audubon Center at 883-5100 or email email@example.com for more information or to register.
Rare Egret Makes Appearance at the Marsh
Bird watchers armed with telescopes and cameras are flocking to the Scarborough Marsh to see a rare Little Egret. It is officially the first of its breed ever spotted in Maine, and one of a small number seen in North America, said Doug Hitchcox, a naturalist with the Scarborough Marsh Audubon Center. Hitchcox was the first to identify the bird while leading a weekly bird-watching walk early Wednesday morning. >>Read More (Portland Press Herald)
Who wouldn't like to see a few more cottontail rabbits hopping around Scarborough Marsh? Shrubland habitat along the Eastern Trail recently has been expanded for the endangered animal. Shrubland habitat along the Eastern Trail recently has been expanded for the endangered New England cottontail rabbit. The state is working along with public, private and nonprofit partners to expand and manage cottontail habitat and to grow their population.
BioDiversity Research Institute is a nonprofit ecological research group based in Gorham. Dedicated to progressive environmental study and education to further global sustainability and conservation policies, they recently released two new reports focusing on contaminants, mercury, and saltmarsh sparrows. Links to these reports may be found in our online library of reports.
Conserve, protect, restore, and enhance the Scarborough Marsh.