Birds & Plants at the Coastal Center
Purple Martin Cam
June 4, 2021 — Nesting season has just started, and we’re live from inside one of the nest gourds in the Coastal Center’s Purple Martin colony.
June 4, 2021 — Two days after crows destroyed a couple of eggs in the Milford Point Osprey nest, one egg remains.
If it’s viable, it will hatch in just about two weeks, or roughly June 18.
In the Sanctuaries …
March 16, 2021 — The focus of attention at the Milford Point Coastal Center last week was the yellow leg-wear of a visitor to the outer sandbar.
The visitor was an American Oystercatcher, banded with a yellow leg identification tag. Bird banding is a long-established method for tracking the movements of migratory birds. Each time a bird with a band is observed, and the observation recorded with the U.S. Geological Survey, a data point is added to the record.
Connecticut’s coasts and the nearby waters of Long Island Sound are globally important for migratory shorebirds and waterfowl. In this case, the arrival of one bird, though seemingly inconsequential, reconfirmed Milford Point’s importance as a place for migratory shorebirds to rest and feed.
Katerina Gillis, who works for Connecticut Audubon as the IBA coastal ranger at Milford Point, snapped this photograph on March 12, from about 150 feet away.
Milford Point is among the best places in the northeast to look for migratory shorebirds, and we encourage you to visit on your own or sign up for our bird walks.
A total of 315 bird species have been seen at the Coastal Center. Ospreys nest in the marsh. Highly vulnerable species such as Piping Plovers and American Oystercatchers nest on the beaches. Snowy Owls often spend the winter in the area. Thousands of shorebirds congregate in August and September.
The nearby waters of Long Island Sound and the Housatonic River are rich in oysters and clams. The dune habitat supports rare plants. A thriving population of Purple Martins occupies a colony at the edge of the marsh.
Four observation platforms are available to wildlife viewing, as are the beaches. We also have a newly-established pollinator garden. We ask visitors to keep a respectful distance from all wildlife.