The Coastal Center at Milford Point

Canoe Tours Summer 2015

Guided Canoe Tours

Through the Charles E. Wheeler Salt Marsh

Canoe tour at CAS Coastal Center_by Frank Gallo

Saturday, July 18, 12:15 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.*
Saturday, August 1, 11:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.*
Saturday, August 29, 10:15 a.m. – 12:45 p.m
Saturday, September 12, 12:15 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. *
Sunday, September 27, 9:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
Sunday, October 11, 9:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

 

Spend a lovely day with us on a relaxing guided canoe tour of the 840-acre Charles Wheeler Salt Marsh at Milford Point. Get away from the noise and bustle of everyday life to a place for quiet contemplation. Steeped in local history, the Marsh also offers an abundance of birds and other wildlife, beautiful vistas and a chance to paddle and unwind. Bring water, a snack, and wear shoes that can get wet. (* Bring a lunch on these days.)
Contact the Coastal Center for more information. Trip routes are subject to change due to weather. Wind may cause trips to be canceled, even on sunny days; please call 30-45 minutes in advance for trip status. Advance registration required. Sign-up early for these popular tours! Canoes and equipment provided.

Coastal Center Canoes
CAS Members $27/person, $69/canoe (3 people)
Non-members $35/person, $95/canoe (3 people)

Private Canoe/Kayak (Bring your own boat)
$20 CAS Members, $30 Non-members

The Ospreys are raising chicks. Watch it on the Osprey Cam.

Help Wanted: Seasonal Teacher-Naturalists

The Connecticut Audubon Society’s Milford Point Coastal Center has an immediate need for talented, enthusiastic and energetic individuals for our Seasonal Teacher‐Naturalist positions.  Click to learn more 

General Information

Coastal Center at Milford Point

Coastal Center at Milford Point

Connecticut Audubon Society’s Coastal Center at Milford Point is located on an 8.4-acre barrier beach and is situated next to the 840-acre Charles Wheeler Salt Marsh and Wildlife Management Area at the mouth of the Housatonic River.  The Coastal Center promotes the awareness of Long Island Sound’s ecosystem, the birds and habitats it supports, and its preservation needs; and provides access to Long Island Sound and its many habitats: tidal salt marshes, barrier beaches, tide pools, and coastal dunes.  The Coastal Center is a bird-watcher’s paradise – 315 species have been seen here, including many rarities. The Coastal Center offers a full range of educational programs and many events for families, children, and adults.  The Coastal Center provides educational exhibits, a tide pool demonstration tank, a salt-marsh laboratory, and program and meeting rooms. The Coastal Center’s grounds contain the 8-acre Smith-Hubbell Wildlife Refuge and Bird Sanctuary, a boardwalk and observation platform with interpretive signage, and a 70-foot covered observation tower for panoramic vistas.  Viewers from around the world watch the Center’s seasonal Osprey Cam, operated from our 18-foot tall nesting platform.

 

Join our Volunteer Team!

At the Connecticut Audubon Society, we believe that every person can make a positive difference in protecting and preserving our environment. By volunteering at our Coastal Center at Milford Point, you can help promote understanding, appreciation, and stewardship of our natural world. We have a variety of volunteer opportunities available for people of all interests and experience levels, including working at the front desk as a receptionist, in the exhibit room as a docent, or outdoors on the nature sanctuary in various capacities.

If you are interested in becoming a Coastal Center Volunteer, click here to download a printable application form. Please email the form to Louise Crocco, Office Manager, at lcrocco@ctaudubon.org, or come on in to the Coastal Center and deliver it in person! We’re located at 1 Milford Point Road in Milford, CT. We look forward to seeing you soon. 

 

Education Programs

Science in Nature

Connecticut Audubon Society’s Science in Nature programs consist of hands-on, inquiry-based activities that relate to earth and life sciences, ecology, conservation and citizenship. Each program is aligned with the state’s science, math and literacy standards. These programs are an invaluable resource for building student and teacher learning capacity by providing opportunities to enhance critical thinking skills, using and designing models, and developing evidence-based explanations of natural phenomena. Click here for the full curriculum palette, brochures, and program design. 

School Programs (for children ages 3 and above).

Our professional naturalists and educators offer a wide range of programs that can be delivered at our Center, or in your classroom or schoolyard.  

Click here for program descriptions and a copy of our school program flier. To schedule a program or for more information, call use at 203-878-7440, ext. 502.

Preschool Programs

The Coastal Center also offers programs tailored for preschools. Click here for a pre-K program flier.

After School Programs

The Coastal Center currently presents after school program series in nearly all the elementary schools in Milford, and in other area towns.  For more information about our hands-on dynamic programs,  click here for copy of our after school program flier.

Birthday Parties

Look no further! CAS’s Coastal Center at Milford Point is the perfect place to hold your child’s next birthday party! Our staff has designed a wide range of “theme” parties to provide your child and their friends with a memorable and fun hands-on learning experience. Call 203-878-7440  for details or click here for our birthday party brochure.

Brownie, Girl Scout, Cub Scout & Boy Scout Programs

Our updated scouting programs are 60-90 minutes long and are designed to help scouts earn their badges and learn about the environment. 

Click here for our new Girl Scout & Brownie Programs brochure, or click here for our new Boy Scout & Cub Scout Programs brochure. Call 203-878-7440 for more information or to book a program for your scout today! 

Events at the Coastal Center at Milford Point

News and Announcements

Fall Birding Programs

Hidden Gems Series: Bird Walks in Milford & Stratford Parks

7:45 – 8:45 a.m.

Saturday, September 12: Wilcox Park, Milford – migrants
Saturday, September 19: Boothe Park, Stratford – hawks and other migrants
Sunday, September 27: Mondo Ponds – Warblers and other migrants

Milford and Stratford are blessed with many wonderful parks. Expert birder Frank Gallo, Director of Connecticut Audubon’s Coastal Center (CAS), has handpicked the best sites to explore in autumn, from hidden gems, such as Booth Park, to more well-known sites, such as Silver Sands State Park. Frank will guide walkers to a variety of species of seasonal birds at each location. No experience necessary. Binoculars are available upon request. Preregistration recommended. Contact Louise at 203-878-7440 x 502 to register and to request binoculars. Meet at each park; directions will be provided.

 Fee: weekly $9 per walk ($5 seniors, $7 CAS members)

Basic Hawk Identification

Saturday, September 19
9 a.m. – Noon

Learn the basics of hawk identification in the field, at the peak of hawk migration, with expert birder Frank Gallo. We’ll spend three hours at Stratford’s Boothe Park’s hawk station sorting through the different groups of hawks, from accipiters to eagles. Frank will address the finer points of distinguishing similar species such as, sharp-shinned from Cooper’s Hawks, Kestrel’s from Merlin’s, and Red-shouldered from Red-tailed Hawks. Please meet at the Boothe Park parking lot, 5800 Main St, Stratford. To register, call Louise Crocco at 203-878-7440 x 502

Fee: $35 (CAS members $30)

Birding Basics

Wednesday, September 23, 7–9 p.m. (classroom)
Sunday, September 27, 1:15-4:00 p.m. (field trip)

Learn the basics for identifying birds on your own! During this fun and comprehensive hands-on course, longtime instructor and expert birder Frank Gallo will teach you ID skills as well as how to choose and use field guides and binoculars, and where to find birds locally. The course culminates with a field trip to a local park. No experience is necessary. Bring the “Peterson Field Guide to Eastern Birds.” (Field guides are available for sale at the Coastal Center.) To register, call Louise Crocco at 203-878-7440 x 502

Fee: $75/person. (CAS Members $65)

 

Canoe Tours Summer 2015

Guided Canoe Tours

Through the Charles E. Wheeler Salt Marsh

Canoe tour at CAS Coastal Center_by Frank Gallo

Saturday, July 18, 12:15 p.m. – 2:45 p.m.*
Saturday, August 1, 11:30 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.*
Saturday, August 29, 10:15 a.m. – 12:45 p.m
Saturday, September 12, 12:15 p.m. – 2:45 p.m. *
Sunday, September 27, 9:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
Sunday, October 11, 9:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.

 

Spend a lovely day with us on a relaxing guided canoe tour of the 840-acre Charles Wheeler Salt Marsh at Milford Point. Get away from the noise and bustle of everyday life to a place for quiet contemplation. Steeped in local history, the Marsh also offers an abundance of birds and other wildlife, beautiful vistas and a chance to paddle and unwind. Bring water, a snack, and wear shoes that can get wet. (* Bring a lunch on these days.)
Contact the Coastal Center for more information. Trip routes are subject to change due to weather. Wind may cause trips to be canceled, even on sunny days; please call 30-45 minutes in advance for trip status. Advance registration required. Sign-up early for these popular tours! Canoes and equipment provided.

Coastal Center Canoes
CAS Members $27/person, $69/canoe (3 people)
Non-members $35/person, $95/canoe (3 people)

Private Canoe/Kayak (Bring your own boat)
$20 CAS Members, $30 Non-members

Big Day 2015: Chasing the State Record in Support of the Coastal Center

Bird number 191: Upland Sandpiper. Photo by Pesayo/Carolinabirds.org

Bird number 191: Upland Sandpiper. Photo by Pesayo/Carolinabirds.org

by Frank Gallo
Associate Director
Milford Point Coastal Center

It started as it always does, with the five of us standing together at midnight, in a marsh in Hartford County, with high hopes.

Our team — the Connecticut Audubon Society’s Raven Lunatics (Nick Bonomo, Patrick Dugan, Dave Tripp, Fran Zygmont and me) — was beginning its annual Big Day, a 24-hour birding competition and fundraiser for the Coastal Center at Milford Point. We hoped to raise $7,500 in pledges to support the center’s educational and conservation initiatives. It would also be a chance to best our Big Day record of 192 species and to finally reach our goal of finding 200 species in a 24-hour period in Connecticut, which no team in New England has accomplished.

Read the whole story here…

Lecturer Enlightens Audience about the Hidden Lives of Snowy Owls

View from the Milford City Hall balcony during The Hidden Lives of the Snowy Owl. Connecticut Audubon Society photo.

View from the Milford City Hall balcony during The Hidden Lives of the Snowy Owl.

Before last winter, the common wisdom was that the Snowy Owls that occasionally left their Arctic breeding grounds to winter further south did so because they were desperate for food and arrived in our area exhausted and starving.

But according to Don Crockett, who develops the interactive Snowy Owl maps for Project SNOWStorm, that common wisdom might not be true.

Read more >>

From Dragon Doodle to Panorama: How a Trumbull Student Painted Our New Mural

Mural_LauraBollert_byKayleeWeil

Laura Bollert and the Coastal Center’s new mural. Connecticut Audubon Society photo by Kaylee Weil.

Laura Bollert had never even seen the Milford Point Coastal Center before her first day as a volunteer camp counselor in 2012.

She was a rising high school senior, and it seemed a good way to earn community service credits for graduation.

As that first day ended, other counselors were saying goodbye to campers they had just met or texting late afternoon plans to their parents. Laura was agreeing to paint a panoramic mural of Milford Point’s tidal marsh.
Read more about the new mural >>

Check out the New Haven Register feature on the mural! 
Click here to read on >>

2014 Big Sit! Recap

Big Sit! 2014

The Surf Scopers

On Sunday, October 12, 2014, Frank Gallo and the Surf Scopers had an absolutely amazing day for the Big Sit! 

The grand total for the Connecticut Audubon Society’s Surf Scopers was an astonishing 117 species! This eclipses their previous high of 107 set in 2010, and bests their 20-year average of 78 species by almost 30. Click below to read the full report of how the team accomplished this incredible feat. 

Read more >>

Frank Gallo on “Bird Calls” radio show with Chris Bosak

Frank talks with Bird Call’s producer Chris Bosak about the 2011 Birding Big Day Fundraiser, getting children involved in birding, and our successful Return of the Osprey Party. Click the link below to listen to the show.

http://www.birdsofnewengland.com/id94.html
Or visit www.birdsofnewengland.com and click on “Bird Calls archives” from the home page.

Directions

From I-95: Take Exit 34. Turn right at the traffic light where the ramp meets Route 1. Go ½ mile to the third light at Naugatuck Avenue. Turn left onto Naugatuck Avenue and go 0.8 miles to the second light at Milford Point Road. Turn right and follow Milford Point Road ½ mile to the stop sign at Seaview Avenue. Turn right and go 0.35 miles. When the road forks, take the right fork into the parking area.

From Merritt Parkway: Take Exit 54, the connector to I-95, and follow the above directions.

From I-84 westbound: Take I-91 south to I-95, and follow the above directions.

From I-84 eastbound: Take Route 8 south to I-95 northbound, and follow the above directions.

Connect to MapQuest

Address

1 Milford Point Road
Milford, CT 06460
203-878-7440

Center Hours:

Tuesday-Saturday
10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
Sunday, Noon-4:00 p.m.
(Closed Monday)

Our adjoining 8-acre
Smith-Hubbell Wildlife Refuge and Bird Sanctuary is open daily, year-round, from dawn to dusk.

Sanctuary Map
Get Directions

Coming Up At the Coastal Center At Milford Point

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