SHERWOOD ISLAND SHOREFEST @The Pavilion at Sherwood Island State Park Friday, September 9th, 2016 6:00-9:00pm The Friends of Sherwood Island State Park invite you to the Shorefest Fundraiser and Inauguration of Project 100 Trees for One Hundred Years. This project helps maintain the park’s unique environment after tree loss and habitat damage from hurricanes and storms. Dinner ticket proceeds support the Nature Center, its programming, and the summer internship program, helping train our future environmentalists. Proceeds of the Silent Auction and Donation Opportunities will support the Trees Project. For further information, please contact Liz-Ann Koos at (203) 451-5755 or at Buy ticket for Sherwood Island Shorefest 2016 using this form Powered by Eventbrite You can also buy tickets using this link

  Over 100 (maybe as many as 150) people attended the event, and were thrilled with Iain Kerr's lecture at the Nature Center AND the drones at the airfield.   You can see pics of this great event here and here--thanks to Tom Bruno of the Westport Library!   Here was our event listing:   Join The Westport Library and the Friends of Sherwood Island at the Sherwood Island Nature Center for an exciting program featuring the Ocean Alliance and their revolutionary new method of collecting biological samples from whales using remote-operated drones, an invention they’ve named Snotbot. Snotbots hover in the air above a surfacing whale and collect the blow (or snot) exhaled from its lungs. Dr. Iain Kerr, CEO of the Ocean Alliance, a global leader in whale research and conservation since 1970 when it was founded as the Long Term Research Institute, will give a presentation about Snotbot and how it is transforming how we study whales. Immediately following, the Ocean Alliance will conduct a live demonstration of the Snotbot in action using 3D printed blowholes on the Country Squires Modelers Airfield at Sherwood Island. Light refreshments will be served, courtesy of Friends of Sherwood Island.   If you've ever been interested in whales, and how they're now being researched with non-intrusive drones, this event's for you!  

By Emily Weyrauch WestportNow, FRIDAY, AUGUST 19, 2016 Unlike the majority of visitors to Sherwood Island State Park this summer, Michele Sorensen isn’t there for the sun and the sea. Instead, her sights are set higher—in the sky and up in the trees, on the myriad bird species drawn to the park to breed or feed. [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="260"] Michele Sorensen - Image[/caption] Michele Sorensen keeps watch for birds on the beaches at Sherwood Island State Park. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Emily Weyrauch for Sorensen, the Sherwood Island Nature Center’s liaison, knows it’s more than just gulls when it comes to life on the beach, and is passionate about the park’s ecosystems and avian diversity. “The longer you hang out,” she said, “the more you see.” On a recent walk on the park’s East Beach, Sorensen pointed out the wrack line—a green and brown kelp fringe found when the tide recedes. It is where shorebirds pick for washed up crabs and clams. They have to move fast though, as park staff routinely remove the seaweed, grooming the beach for visitors. Sorensen is an educator and monitors nests of osprey—the high-nesting birds often accommodated by plywood platforms above utility poles—for the Connecticut Audubon Society. She also works as a kayak instructor and considers herself primarily a naturalist. That is, she knows a lot about birds, but is also compelled by the relationship between all organisms in the park’s ecosystem. “I’m interested in diversity,” said Sorensen. “And seeing who’s living out here on the rocky beach.” [caption id="" align="alignnone" width="260"] Tina Green - Image[/caption] Westporter Tina Green goes birding every day, usually at sunrise. (CLICK TO ENLARGE) Emily Weyrauch for Another local bird enthusiast, Westporter Tina Green, began birdwatching in the summer of 2008 at Cape Cod. She saw a notice for a bird walk for beginners in the newspaper and tagged along, without a pair of binoculars or any real knowledge about birds. “I looked through the [docent’s] scope at the shore birds—sandpipers. I was just totally amazed,” said Green. “I thought, ‘I’ve been missing this my whole life?’” Now, eight years later, she leads walks for the New Haven Birding Club and serves on the board of the Connecticut Ornithological Association, where she has also served as vice president and president. Green is currently the only woman on the Avian Records Committee of Connecticut, which maintains the official list of the state’s bird species including a checklist of rarities. Green considers Sherwood Island her “patch”—a term birders use to describe a favorite area that they cover regularly. She is a state lister, which means that she tries to see every bird species that flies into the state each year. At Sherwood Island, Green was instrumental in acquiring the purple martin gourds—the strange ceramic cartoonish birdhouses