Rain Barrel Spring Workshop Dates Announced

The Northern Virginia Rain Barrel Partners’ have announced the spring dates for their popular build-your-own workshops and pre-made rain barrel sale. Build-your-own workshops will be held on March 24th and April 14th, and the pre-made barrel sale will be April 20th-21st. Online registration and ordering will open in early-to-mid February.

Get ready for the Great Backyard Bird Count!

Enjoy observing local birds? You can make your observations count. The Great Backyard Bird Count, running from February 16-19 is a fun, free, family-friendly event that asks us to observe and count the birds in our backyards, building balconies, parks, schools–anywhere we may find them. Learn how to sign up and get started counting here.

Help spread the word with pre-made resources here.

In support of the bird count, DC Audubon is organizing a bird walk on Saturday, February 17 at 10:00 am at the U.S. Arboretum. For details and other updates, sign up here.

Join citizen scientists around the world for this annual tradition!

See the Tundra Swans at Mason Neck

 Saturday, February 10, 2018, 2:00 PM

Woodmarsh Trail, Elizabeth Hartwell Mason Neck Wildlife Refuge

 

Join the Friends of Mason Neck State Park on Saturday, February 10 on a walk to see the Tundra Swans! Each year, the Mason Neck area is host to one of Northern Virginia’s largest concentrations of Tundra Swans. Depending on the day, you may see between 200 and 400 swans and hear their haunting calls. You will also see other waterfowl, including Northern Pintails, American Coots, Ruddy Ducks, Black Ducks and Mallards — and who knows what else? Bring your binoculars if you have them. If not, there will be binoculars and telescopes for people to share. The tide will be high when the group gets there, which will maximize the likelihood that the birds will be close.

The group will gather at the Woodmarsh parking lot at 2:00 PM. It is on the left of High Point Road about a quarter mile BEFORE the Mason Neck State Park Contact Station. It is about a 1-mile walk on level ground to the bird blind at the marsh.

There is no charge for the hike, and there is no need to pay the State Park entrance fee since the group will be outside the park.

Learning opportunity: Designing green roof habitats in cities

Join the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) and Biophilic DC as they explore emerging design practices and issues related to this new urban habitat. Both organizations will have information on hand to help you get involved. Weds, 7 February 2018 6:30–8:00 PM ASLA Center for Landscape Architecture 636 I Street Northwest Washington, DC 20001 […]

Register for Washington Area Citizen Science Regional Meeting, 9 February

Area-wide citizen scientists are meeting at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History to discuss 2018 City Nature Challenge (CNC) and how you might get involved. Join them Friday, 9 February 2018, 9:00 am – 11:00 am.

AGENDA

Presentation by Chris Meyer, PI Moorea Biocode

2018 City Nature Challenge (CNC)

  • International and Regional Overview
  • CNC Basics: How to Get Started, Tools and Resources for participation
  • What We’re Up To – Local Projects Underway, Identification Parties, Q and A
  • Ideas and Pitches for collaboration, cool projects

Regional Network Updates

An optional 30-minute iNaturalist training will  following the meeting.

Please RSVP to: biophilicdc@gmail.com

Register for 14th annual Woods and Wildlife Conference, 24 February, Culpepper

The 14th Annual Woods & Wildlife Conference will be held on February 24, 2018 at the Daniel Technology Center, Germanna Community College, Culpeper.  On-line and mail-in registration are open.

Pre-registration is due by 14 February. $45/person. $80/couple

Topics:

  • Scientific and social challenges of timber harvesting on private lands
  • Early successional habitat: Why and how?
  • Invasive species update
  • Forest pollinators
  • Case study: The Shenandoah National Park Fire
  • Selling timber: Panel of practitioners
  • Snags: Dead trees are good
  • Introduction to wild edibles
  • Pine savannahs: Where wildlife and pine production intersect
  • Habitat triage and congnitive mapping
  • Frogging by ear
  • Coyotes in Virginia: Here today and here to stay

View presentations from previous conference.

This conference counts toward continuing education credits for master naturalists.

Family friendly volunteer opportunities: Restore habitat in Oakton and Vienna, 27 January

The Invasive Management Area (IMA) Program is hosting habitat restoration service opportunities on Saturday, 27 January, in Wayland Street Park in Oakton, and Borges Street Park in Vienna . See calendar for details of timing and requirements.

  • The minimum age to volunteer is 11. Please contact the IMA Coordinator for details.
  • Volunteers 13 and younger must be accompanied by an adult.
  • Students who need community service hours, please bring the form to be signed to your workday.
  • IMA workday forms must be received by noon the day prior to the event for weekday workdays, and by noon on Friday for weekend workdays.

The IMA Volunteer Program is a community-based project designed to reduce invasive plants on our parklands. This program gives volunteers an opportunity to connect with like-minded people while taking care of natural resources. Through IMA, you’ll protect the plants and wildlife of Fairfax County’s forests while spending time outdoors, meeting new people and restoring natural habitats.

IMA is more than just pulling weeds. It’s also habitat restoration and a long-term commitment to parks. Invasive plant species are difficult to remove and control, but with the help of IMA volunteers, undesirable non-native, invasive plants are removed and native plants are returned to the habitat. Native plantings take place in the spring and fall.

The IMA project began in 2006 with 20 sites. Since then, more than 35 acres have come under IMA management, and there are 40 active IMA sites. More acres have been treated and restored by contractors and staff.

Support local farmers at Frying Pan Park events in February and March

Meet local farmers in the Fairfax County area to hear their stories about growing food to feed our communities.  Learn ways we can support each other and enjoy a sample of their harvests as we gather together.

February 11, 2018:  Jessie and Sean Baker, Day Spring Farms

March 11, 2018:  Allyson Gibson, Pocket Farms

Each program is from 2-3:30 PM at the Frying Pan Visitor Center, 2739 West Ox Road, Herndon VA  20171, (703) 437-9101

Cost: $10/person

Register: http://bit.ly/2klhmZ1

Learning opportunity on climate change, sponsored by Sierra Club

Scientists have been researching and studying climate change for over 100 years and have come to a near-unanimous consensus that the burning of fossil fuels is the major contributor.  The Climate Reality Project presents Climate Reality Leader Paula Clements, whose slide show presentation will depict the urgency for climate action but is really a message of hope.

When:  Tuesday, January 30, 7:00-8:30 PM (snacks 6:30 PM)

Where:  Oakton Library, 10304 Lynnhaven Place, Oakton VA

Contact and RSVP:  Susan Weltz at s.weltz@yahoo.com

Sponsored by:  Sierra Club/Great Falls Group, 350.org Fairfax, Herndon Environmental Network, FACS, UUCF Climate Action Group

Attend Shenandoah Valley Plant Symposium 2018

Waynesboro Parks and Recreation presents A Gardener’s Palette, a learning opportunity for everyone from garden hobbyist to experienced landscape architect.

Proceeds from the event support our horticulture department’s Bloom Program.

Friday, March 16, 2018 from 8:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.

Best Western Inn & Conference Center, Waynesboro, VA

Learn more and register.