Summer Life
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When and Where of Birding
BY GREG HANISEK
REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN

Birders tend to zero in on the migration seasons — April to May in spring and September to November in autumn — but the summer months offer wonderful opportunities to observe birds and their young during the breeding season.

Beautiful birds such as Baltimore orioles, northern cardinals and ruby-throated hummingbirds nest in or near many of our yards, and trips to state parks and other sorts of public conservation areas provide a broad array of opportunities.

Here is a rundown by month of some worthwhile places to visit if you need to get your birding fix this summer:

JUNE


White Memorial Foundation in Litchfield and Morris
By most accounts this is the best inland birding site in Connecticut. There are many miles of trails through varied habitats, and of special interest is the boardwalk trail around Little Pond. In addition to wetland birds such as wood ducks and marsh wrens, a walk in the early morning or evening usually offer looks at beavers.

Mohawk Mountain State Forest in Cornwall
Perhaps the most scenic view in Connecticut is at the summit of Mohawk Mountain, which can be reached by car. The woodlands hold breeders such as pileated woodpeckers, scarlet tanagers and several species of thrushes. It is one of the best places for breeding warblers.

Bent of the River Audubon in Southbury
In addition to woodlands, Bent of the River specializes in protection off scrubland habitats that quickly revert to forest if not properly managed. These areas support a distinct array of species that include blue-winged warblers, prairie warblers, indigo buntings and field sparrows.

Topsmead State Park in Litchfield
Loss of farmland has meant a decrease in grassland bird species. This is a good spot to see bobolinks.

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