Madagascar: Exploring a Biodiversity Hotspot through its Lemurs and Birds, May 17th

Photo: Collared Nightjar, Elizabeth Lyons

Tuesday, May 17, 2022
7 – 8:00pm
Where: ONLINE
Cost: Free
Register here.

The Audubon Society of Northern Virginia presents, Madagascar: Exploring a Biodiversity Hotspot through its Lemurs and Birds.

Dr. Sally Bornbusch and Dr. Libby Lyons, a mother-daughter scientist team, will immerse the audience in the fascinating biodiversity of Madagascar. Based on their first-hand experience with Madagascar as a biodiversity hotspot, they will focus on its famous lemurs, a group of primates found only in Madagascar, and its suite of endemic birds. They will discuss some of the recently extinct animals, the human impacts that continue to challenge the island nation, and conservation efforts being undertaken to protect Madagascar’s unique biological richness. They will also reflect on their scientific career paths in hopes of helping young women and girls pursue their own passions in environmentalism and science.

For more information about this event please click here.

Birding by Ear for Beginners with Colt Gregory, May 12th

Photo: Blackburnian Warbler, Shirley Donald/Audubon Photography Awards

Thursday, May 12, 2022
7 – 8:00pm
Where: ONLINE
ASNV Members: $10
Non-members: $20
Register here.

The Audubon Society of Northern Virginia presents, Birding by Ear for Beginners with Colt Gregory.
Often it is faster and easier to identify a bird by its song. In this program, Colt Gregory will:

– explain the many benefits of birding by ear
– introduce some of the most common birds by their songs and calls
– share resources and apps to help you practice and improve your birding by ear skills.

This program is intended for beginner birders but may be a helpful refresher for more experienced birders. This program welcomes children age 10+ accompanied by a participating adult.

For more information about this event please click here.

Raptor Rapture, April 30th — CANCELED

UPDATE:  THIS EVENT HAS BEEN CANCELED TO PROTECT THE RAPTORS FROM AVIAN FLU

 

Photo: Stacey Remick-Simkins

Saturday, April 30, 2022
10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Where: Belle Haven Park
No Registration required.

The Raptor Rapture event is open to the public and does not require registration.  It will be held in Belle Haven Park, which is located off the George Washington Memorial Parkway just south of Old Town Alexandria.  It is recommended to use a GPS to obtain directions by entering “Belle Haven Park” as your destination.

The event may be cancelled due to inclement weather, in which case we will post a cancellation notice to our website and Facebook page. Sending an email to nfo@fodm.org is the best way to get in touch if you have any additional questions.

Plastic Pollution

Photo:  Mike Walker

Thursday, May 19, 2022
7pm
Where: ONLINE and In-person at the Mount Vernon Government Center, 2511 Parkers Lane, Alexandria 22306

Register here.

Sarah Kollar, Outreach Manager of Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup, will examine the plastic pollution crisis, the impacts on communities, wildlife and other natural resources and solutions to plastic proliferation

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Cleanup at the Commons

All photos provided by Katy Johnson.

Spring is a good time to get involved with local stream cleanups to clear watersheds of trash and debris accumulated over the winter. Fairfax Master Naturalist Katy Johnson provided photos and a report on a cleanup in her community. A real family affair.

She reported that the Country Club Hills community hosted the Friends of Accotink Creek and were joined by special guest Delegate David Bulova – a true champion of the environment – for their annual ‘Creek Cleanup at The Commons’.

Prior to the event some of the older children read a book titled, “The Water Walker” by Joanne Robertson, to develop a greater appreciation of water as a resource. The book is about an Ojibwa Native American Nokomis’ (grandmother’s) determination to raise attention to her people’s special relationship with Nibi (water) and to protect it for future generations.

Another afternoon highlight for the kids and adults alike was catching and counting the various macro-invertebrates in the water. This is a good Stream Monitoring technique because benthic macro-invertebrates are affected by physical, chemical, and biological stream conditions. The macro-invertebrate evaluation scored this section of the stream as a 5 on a scale of 1-10 (Macro-invertebrate Community Index – MCI). A midrange MCI score alerts the team that work needs to be done to improve the stream’s health. Creating awareness is the first step towards recovery.

The cleanup crew was large and included families in the community and friends of the community. The crew collected lots of trash, learned about creek critters, and had an overall great time taking care of their precious Nibi.

Katy lauded her community by saying, “Country Club Hills is an amazing place”!

Symphony of Frogs – Families, April 2nd

Photo courtesy of Fairfax County Park Authority

Saturday, April 2, 2022
Huntley Meadows Park
3701 Lockheed Blvd., Alexandria, VA

Registration: Register Online

Cost $9.00

Come discover Huntley’s amphibian orchestra. Join a naturalist for a discussion and a guided walk to listen for serenading frogs and toads. Learn the calls of a bull frog, southern leopard frog, green frog, tree frog, American toad and more.

Mason Neck Eagle Fest, May 7th

Photo courtesy of Eagle Fest

Saturday, May 7, 2022
10am – 6pm
Mason Neck State Park
7301 High Point Rd, Lorton, VA

The Eagle Festival will be live and in-person this year! Please mark your calendar for a wonderful day at Mason Neck State Park. There will be live animal presentations all day long, as well as live music, demonstrations, and interactive exhibits from more than 20 environmental organizations.

Spring Native Plant Sales

Photo courtesy of Virginia Native Plant Society

Native plants provide better food for insects, which in turn provide food for birds. You can make a huge difference for wildlife by planting native species on your property.

Virginia Native Plant Society maintains a list of native plant sales in the area.

Not on the list, but worth considering is Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy’s Native Plant Sale, which takes place on April 16, 2022 in Morven Park in Leesburg.  More information is here: www.loudounwildlife.org/event/spring-native-plant-sale

Leesburg Flower and Garden Festival, April 23rd & 24th

When: Saturday & Sunday, 04/23 -24/2022 10:00AM-6:00PM

Where: Leesburg Flower & Garden Fair

King St.
Leesburg, VA 20175

Click here for more information.

Event Description:

The annual Leesburg Flower and Garden Festival is a great way to kick off your spring activities. Visit Loudoun Wildlife Conservancy’s booth for hands-on activities for kids of all ages, see what bear scat really looks like, quiz yourself on different wildlife tracks and signs, and pick up lots of free handouts with ideas for the whole family to get outside and explore nature.

Invasive Plant Identification Walk, April 9th

Photo: Courtesy of the Fairfax County Park Authority

When: Saturday, 04/09/2022 10:00-11:30AM

Where: Ellanor C. Lawrence Park

5040 Walney Road
Chantilly, VA, 20151
Map of Ellanor C. Lawrence Park

Cost: $8.00

Click here for more information.

Register Online.

Event Description:

Identify some Fairfax County’s common invasive plant species. Explore ways to lessen these plants around your home.