There's a lot going on in the natural world in winter, so bundle up the family and join us for an outdoor exploration! This walk will begin with a short introduction indoors, and then we'll go outside to explore. What birds visit your house in winter? We'll walk the trails looking, listening, and calling for birds. After our hike, we'll return to the Nature Center to warm up and view birds from our observation window.
Drop in at Joppa Flats for an up-close winter wildlife experience! On select weekend and school vacation days, Joppa Flats volunteer Deb La Roy presents demonstrations on bird research and banding. After capturing wild birds in the Joppa backyard, Deb brings them inside to measure, weigh, examine, and then release them. The unique band that Deb places carefully on each bird’s leg connects other bird researchers with the data she’s collected. You’ll learn about your own backyard birds and why they’re here while watching scientific research in action.
Come to Newburyport to celebrate the return of migrating eagles back to the Merrimack River Estuary! The Mass Audubon's Joppa Flats Education Center and the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge have teamed up to bring an entire day of free events centered around the wonders of the Bald Eagles that have come to take seasonal advantage of the Merrimack River habitat.
Come to northeastern Massachusetts and southeastern New Hampshire for great winter birding and a chance to compete with other birders. The Superbowl of Birding is a unique, 12-hour team competition, where teams of birders of all ages and abilities seek out the greatest number of species and amass the most points based on the rarity of the birds recorded. Compete for prizes in 10 categories, from the Newbies Award to the esteemed Zeiss Joppa Cup. Enjoy spectacular winter birding and find out just how good you and your team really are! Sponsored by Joppa Flats Education Center, and Zeiss.
Join The Trustees of Reservations at Crane Wildlife Refuge on the Crane Estate in search of the Snowy Owl! Wide-open coastal sites are the location of choice for wintering Snowy Owls; common perches are dunes and salt hay staddles. In winters past, the owls have been frequent visitors to the Crane Wildlife Refuge. Join us for a family snowy owl prowl as we hike the dunes in search of these magnificent birds. As a family hike, this hike will be shorter and slower than our standard snowy owl prowl, focusing on engaging children in the natural world. If you are an adult with no or older children who would prefer a more serene hiking experience, please check out or standard Snowy Owl Prowl events.
Family pricing includes 2 adults and up to 2 children. If your family is larger, please purchase 2 family tickets.
Please note: We will be hiking up and down dunes, through soft sand, for approximately 2 miles. Sturdy shoes are necessary and trekking poles are recommended for anyone with balance concerns. Because we will be looking for Snowy Owls on distant dunes, please bring binoculars if you have them. We will have a few pairs available for use to share between us.
Tis the season for watching wintering birds in the forest or at the feeders, and the colder weather and shorter days are perfect for cozying up with a good book. This free family event celebrates both of these winter pastimes!
As backyard birds head south for the winter, let's give them a proper send-off with a fun, free family event that features bird banding demonstrations, interactive games about bird migration, and lots of table-top science. Younger children will enjoy our crafts and games, while older children can get involved in physics and engineering fun! Preregistration is not required. children must be accompanied by an adult. Family presentations will be offered at half-past each hour.
Come enjoy an early evening excursion at the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary in Topsfield! During the autumn months, thousands of migratory waterfowl fly directly over the sanctuary as they travel from their summer breeding grounds in the north to their winter homes in the south. Each night, hundreds of ducks drop into Bunker Meadows to rest and refuel for their journey. We will hike down to Bunker Meadows and climb the observation tower to observe the magnificent spectacle of ducks coming in to roost. Learn to identify different species, use counters to keep track of numbers, hear the sounds of ducks settling in for the night, and listen for the call of a great horned owl across the marsh. This is an evening not to be missed.
Come for an exciting family visit to the Joppa Flats Bird Banding Station on the Parker river National Wildlife Refuge. See Mass Audubon scientists capture, evaluate, and release migrant songbirds while you learn about migration and habitat use. Don't miss this chance - the station operates only during the height of migration in spring (April and May) and fall (September and October).
See live raptors up close. In this much-anticipated program, Bethani Garland, a wildlife biologist and rehabilitator from On the Wing, will present audiences with five different raptors (birds of prey). You will observe the birds and learn their different calls, the best locations to sight hawks, falcons, and owls, and understand how different body shapes affect how raptors hunt their prey in the air.
Friday, January 24
Saturday, January 25
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