Connecticut Audbon Society
Center at Fairfield

Center at Pomfret

News & Visitor Information at the Center at Pomfret

Annual Holiday Nature Store

Now Open thru December 23rd
10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Mon-Sat; Noon to 4 p.m. on Sundays 

The Center at 218 Day Rd in Pomfret, will be full of gifts for all ages with “Mother Nature” in mind.

We will have bird feeders and houses, suet, gardening gifts, nature books, children’s games, puzzles, field guides, freshly cut Christmas trees, holiday decorations, freshly made evergreen swags, works by local artists, nature jewelry and more. Stock changes daily.

“Perfect Spot to Commune with Nature”

Center at PomfretHuffPost.com has compiled a list of “15 Perfect Spots in Northeast USA to Commune with Nature” and we are thrilled to let you know that the Center at Pomfret/Bafflin Sanctuary” in number 4.

Read it here.

It’s even more impressive than it seems because the authors consider Maryland and Virginia to be the “Northeast.”

Bottom line though is that of the 15 Perfect Places, only four are in New England. We’re one of them!


Birds Seen This Week

Brown Creeper, Bluebird, Great Blue Heron, Northern Harrier, American Kestrel, Red-tailed Hawk, Mockingbird, Great-horned Owl, Carolina Wren, Pileated Woodpecker, Flicker, Robin, Hairy Woodpecker

Birds This Month 

Birds You Can Expect to See in December


 

Art Exhibits and Programs

Becorns: A Woodland World of Wonder
Exhibit & Sale by David Bird
Exhibit extended by popular demand thru December 31

David Bird is a photographer based in Danielson, CT who got his start in character design by working for Lego in Denmark. He makes characters out of acorns, sticks, and whatever else he finds in the back yard, and then he photographs them in the wild with real animals. Most of these photos are the result of a careful study of animal behavior, patience, and a lot of birdseed. You can view his photography and toy designs at davidmbird.com or follow him on Instagram at @davidmbird. Free admission.

Winter Art Show & Sale
Featuring Local Artists
Now through end of December

Come feast your eyes on the talents of three local Connecticut artists:

* Sterling – Avian and Wildlife
Watercolorist David Stumpo;
Green Leaf Studios & Facebook.

* Killingly – Wildlife and Nature
Photographer Nancy L. Barrett;
nancylbarrettphotography.com

* Danielson – “Becorns” and Nature
Photographer David Bird;
davidmbird.com

There will be a variety of artwork and cards for purchase with holiday gift-giving in mind. Free admission.

Trail Wood Reflections:
Writer & Artist In-Residence Exhibit
OPENING Reception and Reading
Sunday, January 26, 2 – 4 p.m.
Exhibit through February 28 at the
Center at Pomfret.

Each year the Summer Writer and Artist In-Residence Program at our Trail Wood Sanctuary in Hampton produces inspirational work. This year’s class is no exception. The beauty found in their paintings, photography and written word well reflect the tranquility of Trail Wood. A great boost in the dead of winter, come celebrate this year’s artists and writers and their experiences. Free.

General Information

Photo by Aaron Bourque

Located in Connecticut’s “Quiet Corner,” the Center at Pomfret is surrounded by our 700-acre Bafflin Sanctuary. The Center is a community-based facility offering programming for all ages year round.

The Bafflin Sanctuary is actively managed for grassland, shrubland, and woodland birds, as well as other wildlife ,and is a nationally recognized Important Bird Area. Over 200 species of birds have been observed at Bafflin.

The sanctuary is open to the public daily from dawn to dusk for hiking and birding. Programs at the Center at Pomfret include bird walks, trail hikes, art exhibitions, photography workshops, seasonal workshops and lectures, environmental education programs, and citizen science training and projects. Also offered are after-school nature clubs, summer and school vacation camps (ages pre-K to high-school).

The Center manages Trail Wood in Hampton. Formerly the home of Pulitzer Prize-winning nature writer Edwin Way Teale, the 168-acre sanctuary now offers well-developed trails and programming for adults, families, and children. Visitors may view the small museum on the property as well as his writing cabin. Museum visits are by appointment only. The sanctuary is open year round from dawn to dusk for hiking and birding.

Download the Bafflin Sanctuary Rules

Download more information about our center and its green features.

For additional programming in our area consider Trail Wood,
our Edwin Way Teale Sanctuary in Hampton.

 

 

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Natural Design

An Intensive Two-Day Workshop with Instructors Larry Weaner, FAPLD and Ethan Dropkin, MLA
February 3 & 4, from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Demand for high performing, ecology-based landscapes is increasing faster than the availability of specialized knowledge needed to achieve them. This workshop will provide guidance for designing and documenting all phases of native landscape development. Attendees will receive an extensive manual that documents all aspects of the program, including plant selection criteria and recommendations. For more info go to
ndal.org/2019-summer-design-workshop/

Climate Change Series

Biggest Little Farm
Monday, Jan. 13, 6:30 p.m.
(Snow date: Tuesday, January 14)

Documentarian John Chester’s true life story chronicling the trials, tribulations and ultimate success of how he and his wife Molly worked to develop a sustainable farm on 200 acres outside of Los Angeles. Free

Legislative Update: Environmental Initiatives
Monday, February 10, 7 p.m.
(Snow date: Tuesday, February 11)

In 2020, the Connecticut General Assembly will be running a “short session” from February to May. There will be a significant amount of legislation considered affecting wildlife, open space, clean water, protection from chemicals like PFAS, and in particular many initiatives relating to renewable energy and climate change mitigation. This discussion will be led by Stephen Lewis, a member of the CT Chapter of the Sierra Club and volunteer on their legislative committee. He will provide a preview of these expected bills and how citizens can be more involved and follow the action more closely. Stephen has 13 years of experience working on staff in the General Assembly and is a Connecticut Audubon Society Master Naturalist and volunteer presenter. Register online or call 860-928-4948. Free

Being the Change: A New Kind of Climate Documentary
Monday, March 9, 6:30 p.m.
(Snow date: Tuesday, March 10)

Complementing the book “Being the Change”, this feature documentary film delves into the life of Caltech/Jet Propulsion Laboratory atmospheric scientist Peter Kalmus, showing how a change in life philosophy and mind frame enabled Kalmus to cut his fossil fuel use to 1/10th of the average American. He did this all while boosting his happiness and raising a family in a typical California suburb. Kalmus shows how he brought together his head (the science), his hands (food growing, bicycling, and lifestyle change), and heart (meditation and community building), to find a new direction in his life. Free

Regular Walks

Meteor Shower Watch/Hike
Friday, December 13, 7 p.m.

Join Andy Rzeznikiewicz as we hike the one mile trail to the scenic vista on Bull Hill. We will hang around the vista for an hour or so depending how cold we get! The Geminid meteor shower should be good, since there will very little moon showing. (We will re-schedule for the 14th in the event of bad weather.) Meet at the Center and we’ll carpool to Bull Hill from here – about 15 minutes away. Bring a lightweight chair if you like. Fee: $5 CAS members; $10 non-members.

Monday Morning Walks
Dec. 2 through Feb. 24, 8:30 a.m.

Stretch your legs, breathe in that early morning air and look for signs of wildlife on the Bafflin Sanctuary with Fran and Nate – longtime volunteers, trackers and nature photographers. Bring your camera if you are so inclined. Free to CAS members; $5 non-members.

Bull Hill Hike
Saturday, January 11, 10 a.m.

Join Andy hiking to the vista on Bull Hill and to other areas not usually explored by visitors. Note: We will be walking off trail at times in somewhat rough terrain. Fee: $5 CAS members; $10 non-members.

Wednesday Noon Walks
thru February 26, Noon 

Join CAS volunteers for fresh air, exercise and good company. Moderate pace on sometimes uneven terrain. Active seniors welcome. Free to CAS members; $3 non-members.

November Dates
Click here to register for November 27

Bird Walks and Programs

Monthly Bird Walks
Friday, December 27, 1 p.m.
Thursday, January 23, 1 p.m.
Thursday, February 20, 1 p.m.

Come out in search of wintering bird species. We will look for horned larks, ducks, hawks, sparrows, yellow-bellied sapsuckers and more. Fee: $5 CAS members; $10 non-members.

Owl Walks
Saturday, December 21, 7 p.m.
Saturday, February 8, 5:30 p.m.

Join Andy in search of wintering owls. We will attempt to find screech, barred, and great-horned owls. Most of the calling is done from the road. Program is cancelled if inclement weather (rain, snow, high winds). Fee: $5 CAS members; $10 non-members.

Citizen Science Volunteer Monitoring Program

Introductory Winter Tracking Hike
Sat., December 7, 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. on the Bafflin Sanctuary

Winter is a great time to find track and sign of fisher, river otter, mink, fox, bobcat, coyote and more in snow covered forests and fields. We’re looking for adults who want to become trained wildlife trackers to monitor study sites in Willington, Canterbury, and Woodstock. Find tracks and document sightings to support local conservation efforts. For info and registration, contact Paula Coughlin, Cit. Sci. Coordinator at paulacoughlin@charter.net
Fee: $30 CAS members; $35 non-members.

Winter Tracking / Training Hikes:
Various dates in Jan. & Feb. 2020, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

These hikes are subject to change due to weather conditions. Full training is six hikes; participants select hikes that suit their schedules. Registration is required. For info, email paulacoughlin@charter.net. Training Fee per hike: $50 CAS members; $60 non-members.

For more information, call 860-928-4948 or contact Paula Coughlin, Citizen Science Coordinator: paulacoughlin@charter.net. Hike dates subject to change due to weather. 

Schedule School Field Trips and In-class Programs

Attention Teachers!
Science In Nature School Programs

Early- Mid May 2016 031_2Want to add a little excitement to your classroom? Consider one of our in-class science programs. We have one-hour programs for kindergarten through sixth grade. Sample titles include: Winter Tracks, Life Cycles, The Dirt on Soils, Adaptations, Birds and Beaks, Food Chains, Skins and Bones, CSI Aquatic, Winter Birds, and Rockin’ Out, to name a few. Also, consider our four-hour school field trips The Dirt on Soil, Bird Ecology, Scratching the Surface (Geology), Watersheds and Erosion, Native Americans, EcoNiches and Adaptations, and more! The calendar fills up quickly. For more info and scheduling call 860-928-4948 or email Sarah at sheminway@ctaudubon.org.

Center at Pomfret, P.O. Box 11, 218 Day Road, Pomfret Center, CT 06259  
860-928-4948 

Special Opportunities

Bird Surveys on Private or Public Property

Sanctuary Manager Andy Rzeznikiewicz is available to conduct bird population surveys and can provide habitat management recommendations for your property. Private property owners, Land Trusts, municipalities or other groups that want an inventory of what bird species are breeding or using their property might be interested in this service. Conservation groups that are evaluating potential land purchases for conservation might find this service helpful as well. The best time of year to conduct nesting bird surveys is May and June. Call for more information: 860-928-4948.

Group Programming

Are you a school, library or other organization serving the community? We’re glad to raise environmental awareness in all contexts! We can bring our wildlife video and bird slide show programs right to you. Call 860-928-4948 for more information on each program.

Private Guided Bird and Nature Walks

Throughout the year, Sanctuary Manager Andy Rzeznikiewicz can take you on a private bird and nature walk geared to your expectations and locations.  Andy can take you to your next life bird, local hot spots, or places he knows to find birds and wildlife for you.  Owl walks and private woodcock watches are very successful in small groups.  This is an excellent gift for that outdoor enthusiast who has everything. Call 860-928-4948 for more information.

Directions

From the intersection of Routes 101 and 169, take Route 169 north.

Take your first right onto Day Road. Follow for approximately one mile to stop sign.

Turn right continuing on Day Road. Center less than one quarter mile up on your right.

218 Day Road, Pomfret Center, CT 06259

 

 

 

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