News & Visitor Information at the Center at Fairfield
Master Naturalists Complete Training
Graduates will serve as local environmental stewards through volunteer service
The Connecticut Audubon Society congratulates the 20 graduates of the fall 2017 Master Naturalist Training Program at the Center at Fairfield.
On November 8, the class members, from communities throughout Connecticut, received their certificates after completing more than 40 hours of both classroom and field training. Topics in the program were taught by environmental education and conservation professionals from around the state.
The graduates will apply their knowledge and skills in varied volunteer capacities at the Center at Fairfield and other Connecticut Audubon centers. From assisting with nature walks and education events, to, helping behind the scenes in the office, nature store and with animal care, the Master Naturalists will contribute their time to a wide variety of projects and activities tailored to their own interests.
Master Naturalist training is for people of all experience levels who want to expand their knowledge of the habitats, plants, animals and natural history of their local communities. It offers the rewards of sharing that knowledge through teaching others about the stewardship of our natural resources, and it provides the opportunity to meet, and work with, those who share the same interests and concerns.
For information about future Master Naturalist training programs offered in Fairfield, please email Program Coordinator Colleen Noyes at: email@example.com.
Housatonic Community College Students Present the Results of Their Turtle Study at a Local Scientific Conference.
Housatonic Community College students have been studying the painted turtle population of the Connecticut Audubon Society Larsen Farm Pond since 2010. This year students presented their results at the 50th annual conference of the Metropolitan Association of College and University Biologists, a meeting of biology faculty and students from the New York, Connecticut, and New Jersey tri-state area.
Our research group collects painted turtles using hoop nets. Captured turtles are treated humanely, data are collected and the turtles released back into the Farm Pond. Each turtle is weighed, measured, has its gender determined and is checked for leeches. When all the information is collected the turtle is marked using a system that assigns each turtle a unique code so that individuals can be recognized if recaptured.
To date we have collected and marked 101 individuals, many of which have been collected several times during our study. As we collect the same individuals over again we can chart the growth of the turtles. Additionally we develop data on sex ratios and the distribution of parasites on the turtle’s body.
We hope to continue our studies over the next several summers as we develop a picture of this turtle population.
I am pleased to announce that this year our student presentation, Distribution of Leeches on the Eastern Painted Turtle (Chrysemys picta) was judged best community college poster presentation in the areas of ecology and environmental science. Students Ana De Sousa, Arielle Hincapie and Nichols Zelaya were presented with certificates of excellence at the meeting.
I would like to thank the staff and administration of The Connecticut Audubon Society for encouraging this study and welcoming us to the Larsen Sanctuary.
— Dr. Tony Pappantoniou, PhD
Professor of Biology
Housatonic Community College – Bridgeport
To view the winning poster click here.
D.G. Warner, Winner of the Dave Engelman Volunteer Benchmark Award
The Connecticut Audubon Society presented longtime Board member D.G. Warner of Southport with its Dave Engelman Volunteer Benchmark Award, at its annual meeting on Sunday, Oct. 15 in Sherman.
He was one of four honorees this year.
D.G. joined Connecticut Audubon’s Board of Directors in 2007 and continued through this year, serving as vice chairman, treasurer, and chairman of the investment and finance committees. He also served for more than a decade on the organization’s Fairfield Board of Governors.
Read more here.
The Center at Fairfield is a hub of environmental education activities and events throughout the year.
It adjoins the 155-acre Roy and Margot Larsen Wildlife Sanctuary, offering visitors seven miles of walking trails, including a 1-mile wheelchair accessible trail.
The grounds also feature a butterfly garden and live birds of prey compound. The Center has live education animals, exhibit areas and a Nature Store with a wide variety of birding and nature-related merchandise.
Trails are open year-round, seven days a week from dawn to dusk. The center is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Sponsor a Bird
It’s a unique present for someone special or as a treat for yourself!
Your sponsorship will support the daily upkeep of your chosen bird, and the considerable amount of scrumptious raptor feed it eats–and yes, that does mean dead mice and rats!
Why not honor your favorite person, organization, teacher, or class with the gift of an owl, falcon or hawk sponsorship? It’s the perfect way to symbolically introduce them to the hunters of the sky!
Click here for sponsorship information!
Dishwasher – gently used no larger than 23 wide by 24 deep.
If you would like to donate a dishwasher, please all 203-259-6305 ext. 109.
Animal Care requests (please call 203-259-6305 ext. 116):
- 75 gallon aquarium stand
- 100 foot garden hose
- Pump style hand sprayer
- Water dechlorinator 32 ounce
- Timothy hay
- Guinea Pig food (Supreme Selective diet)
- Carefresh paper small animal bedding
- Used bath towels
- Raptor rig – call for details
Visit our Fairy Garden!
There’s a lot of activity in the green house… little voices chattering with delight as they search for fairies, tiny pigs and ponies in the Fairy Garden exhibit. This teeny garden of whimsy is a miniature landscape. Small-scale plants, foliage that looks like mini forest trees and teensy accessories give the illusion of tiny creatures living in the garden.
This charming garden was created by Master Gardeners Anne Mele, Mary Hogue and Kristine Scerbo with the assistance of green house volunteer Jessie Linderoth.
Fairy gardens are often located in small secluded areas in the garden, giving visitors the impression that they just happen to fall upon this magical place. So come, stumble upon our Fairy Garden, you’re sure to find magic here!
The Fairy Garden is located in the greenhouse at Center at Fairfield and is open Monday – Saturday from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Join our Volunteer Team!
Fairfield Center Volunteer
At the Center at Fairfield, we believe that every person can make a positive difference in protecting and preserving our environment. By volunteering, 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, working in the visitor center or outdoors.
If you are interested in becoming a Volunteer, please contact Executive Director Rick Boucher at 203-259-6305 ext. 113.
We offer a variety of volunteer opportunities, including garden maintenance in our green-house; outdoor herb, perennial, and large butterfly gardens! read more>>
Animal Care Team
Our Animal Care Program provides a unique opportunity for children ages 13-18, to experience animal husbandry first hand. Animal Care volunteers assist with daily feeding, habitat cleaning, and general animal care housekeeping, as well as handling animals under direct supervision. read more>>
From I-95: Take Exit 21 Mill Plain Road. Go north on Mill Plain Road for 4.5 miles (Mill Plain Road becomes Burr Street). The Center is on the left.
From the Merritt Parkway: Take Exit 44 Route 58. Northbound: Turn right onto Congress Street at the end of the ramp. Proceed to the first stop sign. Turn right onto Burr Street. The Center is approximately 1 mile along on the left. Southbound: Turn left at the light at the bottom of the ramp, and turn left at the next light onto Route 58. Go under the bridge, and turn right at the light onto Congress Street. Proceed to the first stop sign. Turn right onto Burr Street. The Center is approximately 1 mile along on the left.
From I-84: Take Routes 8 or 25 or I-91 to the Merritt Parkway, and follow the directions, above.