Rich Santangelo

School is Cool for Birds!

"Audubon New York’s For the Birds! Program is a multi-session elementary education program that teaches environmental awareness, science, and an appreciation of nature through the study of birds. This conservation action project aims to engage graduates of the program and will focus on the monitoring and data collection of migratory and resident birds that visit their school's bird friendly garden, previously installed by For the Birds! students. Additionally, bird feeding stations will be installed to help attract a variety of birds. Building on prior knowledge, lessons will focus on migratory birds that pass through Long Island, their conservation needs, and how to identify common migratory and resident birds. In addition to classroom instruction, students will research different kinds of bird feeders and strategies to attract birds. Students will monitor the birds they see, collect data, and submit their data to online programs such as Project Feederwatch and eBird. Finally, students will create a field guide to the birds of their school. This field guide will act as a teaching tool teachers and classmates and copies will be kept in their school library. The overall goal of this project is to further the bird study of For the Birds! graduates by having them participate in real-world science. This project will encourage school administrators to expand their bird-friendly gardens, resulting in additional habitat for birds. This project will plans to also demonstrate that the For the Birds! habitat enhancement projects can have a measurable conservation impact.

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