LEWISTON — The Stanton Bird Club of Lewiston and Auburn will meet aqt 6:30 p.m. Monday, March 5, in room 285, USM Lewiston-Auburn College, 55 Westminster St. The subject will be “Raptors,” presented by Cheryl Ring. A birding field trip is planned for Saturday, March 24, to Plum Island, Massachusetts. Meetings and field trips are free and open to everyone.

Cheryl Ring will share pointers on identifying raptors in Maine, using part of the extensive collection of natural specimens from the Maine Master Naturalist Program (MMNP.) She will also present the Hawk Migration Association of North America’s PowerPoint, “Identification of Raptors of the Northeast.”

Cheryl grew up in Auburn and is an avid birdwatcher. She now lives in Augusta and is active in the Augusta Bird Club. Cheryl graduated from MMNP, a year-long program, which covers a variety of natural history topics, in 2015. She serves as MMNP’s board president. 

This is an opportunity to brush up on raptor identification skills. Maine has over a dozen majestic raptors. Even in Lewiston and Auburn, one may see the bald eagle, osprey and peregrine falcon. The Cooper’s hawk and broad-winged hawk are among those that breed in more wooded areas. More rarely seen in this part of the state are raptors such as the northern goshawk and the rough-legged hawk.

Those going on the Plum Island field trip on March 24 will meet at 7 a.m. at the Promenade Mall, 855 Lisbon St., at the end of the parking lot by Staples. Carpooling will be arranged. Attendees should dress warmly and bring a lunch.

The annual Plum Island journey heads to a national wildlife refuge that is on a migratory route for a variety of special winter birds. The trip is planned to return to Lewiston about 4 p.m.The day’s explorations will be led by Steve Reed. For more information, call him at 207-319-6630.


Based on trips in previous years, some birds likely to be seen are northern pintail, common eider, bufflehead and greater yellowlegs. There are several prepared observation posts and beaches on the island. Native salt water marshes, artificial fresh water marshes and thickets and isolated trees of the refuge offer excellent habitat and occasion for scrutiny.

Those looking for a summer class for children ages 6 to 12 should consider enrolling them for the July 16 or the July 23 week sessions of Nature Week at Thorncrag. For details and scholarships, call Penny Jessop at 207-782-5467.

The Stanton Bird Club manages the Thorncrag Nature Sanctuary as well as the Woodbury Nature Sanctuary in Monmouth and Litchfield. It is an environmental organization that seeks to inculcate a love of nature in people of the community and also seeks to create model bird sanctuaries.

FMI: Facebook and www.StantonBirdClub.org. The results of the various trips are posted there, often with photos.

Adult red-tailed hawk, a common hawk regularly seen in the Lewiston/Auburn area. The “belly band” and a red tail on the back side most easily identify the hawk. First-year birds have a banded tail. (Photo by Dan Marquis)

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