New York, NY- This summer join Audubon's Project Puffin and a renowned team of expert birders, naturalists, educators and authors at the historic Audubon Camp in Maine on Hog Island. The 6-day, 5-night programs are run by Audubon's Seabird Restoration Program, with Pete Dunne, Lang Elliott, Don Kroodsma, Scott Weidensaul, Sara Morris, Lynne Cherry, John Kricher, Wayne Peterson, and many others in residence during the 2012 sessions. All programs emphasize enjoyable and relaxed learning in a stunningly beautiful island setting. The 2012 programs include sessions for amateur and avid birders, environmental educators, Audubon Chapter leaders, teens and families.
The Audubon Camp in Maine is considered by many to be the birthplace of the environmental education movement in the United States. Those who attend join a legacy of naturalists inspired by Hog Island, including Roger Tory Peterson, the camp's first birding instructor in 1936, naturalist Rachel Carson, and Mabel Loomis Todd, editor of Emily Dickinson's poetry transcribed on Hog Island. Participants live in original wooden buildings on the 330-acre wildlife sanctuary and are treated to fabulous meals and fresh Maine lobster by chef extraordinaire Janii Laberge.
"It was one of the best weeks of my life. I really enjoyed the program, the staff and instructors, my new "birding buddies" and of course the food! " - Sujan, graduate student, NAS scholarship recipient, Minnesota
June programs Joy of Birding, Field Ornithology and Maine Bird Studies for Teens, are all about birding, with boat trips to seabird nesting islands, bird-banding demonstrations, lively evening presentations, and field trips to saltwater marshes, coastal beaches, freshwater wetlands, blueberry barrens, islands, and Maine's spruce-fir forests. Dr. Steve Kress, Audubon's VP for Bird Conservation and founder of Project Puffin, will narrate your trip to nearby Eastern Egg Rock, site of the first successfully restored colony of Atlantic Puffins, and Roseate, Arctic and Common Terns. June birding programs typically tally more than 120 species of land and seabirds. All programs include an opportunity to work with Audubon staff on conservation projects that benefit seabirds in the Gulf of Maine.
"I really felt that I was in the presence of some of the best birding people in the country, if not the world. How wonderful!" - Peggy, retired teacher, Pennsylvania
In July, Audubon educators and invited instructors will offer an action-packed session for environmental educators designed to inspire and enhance your teaching with practical hands-on activities. The Audubon Chapter Leadership Program for the chapter leaders in the Atlantic Flyway is August 26-31, with $225 matching grants for Audubon chapters available from National Audubon. New for 2012 are the return of Family Camp August 19-24 (adults and ages 8-12) and a Fall Migration program in September directed by birding author Scott Weidensaul, which includes an overnight on gorgeous Monhegan Island. If you really want to get your hands dirty working for seabirds, Audubon has teamed up with Road Scholar to offer two exclusive 'service-learning' programs where you will have the unique opportunity to work on seabird nesting islands to conduct nest censuses (June 3-8) and restore habitat for puffins, storm-petrels and endangered terns (September 9-14).
"When I came to Hog island I didn't know what to expect. Five days later I had been rewarded with the most transformative professional development experiences I have had as a teacher." - John, educator and scholarship recipient, Maine
To enroll, visit http://hogisland.audubon.org. Nearly 100 scholarships are offered each year by local Audubon Chapters and birding clubs. For more information, contact Erica Marx, Program Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (607) 257-7308 x 14.