FEBRUARY 2020 - Each year, the 27 Audubon Chapters in New York are invited to apply for small grants to help initiate or continue local conservation, education, and capacity-building projects.
We are proud to announce this year's grant award winners, whose projects span the state and offer local people incredible new opportunities to make an impact where they live.
Several chapters in New York are expanding their native plant efforts to reach even more people and benefit more birds.
Bedford Audubon plans to build upon their existing Leon Levy Native Garden, located in Katonah, NY, to turn it into a demonstration garden which will serve as a living classroom to those who visit. The transformation project will create a Woodland Edge Garden, a BirdFeeder Garden, an All-Season Garden—all with the goal of exemplifying how different native plants can reinforce each other, how diversity strengthens the ecological value of the garden, and how birds can benefit from native plants at every stage of their life.
North Shore Audubon is also going to create demonstration gardens using native plants, on nine garden plots located on Cow Neck Peninsula Historical Society property. These educational gardens will be established through a partnership between the chapter and an organization called Rewild.
Four Harbors Audubon Society is setting out to prove that you’re never too young to contribute to conservation efforts. With the help of Comsewogue School District elementary students, teachers, and parents, planting will begin at a newly constructed garden in March 2020. This project has received special recognition, and is being honored with the Norm Shapiro Collaborative Grant award, a recognition given to a chapter project that strongly aligns with National, state, and local priorities. It is named in honor of the late Norman Shapiro, a founder of Orange County Audubon and of the Audubon council of NYS.
Radio towers, trail maintenance, and boardwalks... oh the creative ways we can help birds!
Onondaga Audubon – Technological updates will be made to improve the function of the Motus automated radio telemetry tower located at the Derby Hill Bird Observatory, a location that serves as a major spring migratory concentration point for raptors and other avian species. The Motus tower collects data from bird species that have been equipped with Lotek Nano Tags.
Saw Mill River Audubon – In order to better manage the trails at the eight sanctuaries this chapter owns, they will engage and train a sanctuary work team by offering a workshop on trail maintenance followed by work projects. Installing two boardwalks will provide climate resiliency for trails affected by heavier rain events in our changing climate.
Bronx River - Sound Shore Audubon Society – The chapter will continue to run their ‘Learn Birds are Cool in School’ program, which engages 2nd graders in the Mt. Vernon school district. This program gets students excited about nature and birds.
Chemung Valley Audubon Society – Local artist Wynn Yarrow is being commissioned to produce three trail maps that will be installed at the two chapter-owned wildlife sanctuaries, Gleason Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary and Northrup Hill Audubon Wildlife Sanctuary, as well as at Mark Twain State Park, where the chapter has helped to develop and improve birding and hiking trails. The maps will provide visitors with a guide to the trails and will include a description of the habitat types and likely birds to be seen in each.
North Fork Audubon Society – In partnership with the NY State Bluebird Society and a local carpenter, North Fork Audubon is planning to establish 27 Eastern Bluebird boxes for a nest trail and three Wood Duck nest boxes in Orient, NY, which is located within the Orient/Plum Island Important Bird Area. These trails and next boxes will be monitored by trained volunteers.