Park Commission to Train Volunteers to Help Conduct Grassland Bird Survey

(photo credit: Mary Galioto)

The Mercer County Park Commission has been working tirelessly since 2012 at Mercer Meadows to create what is now one of the largest contiguous grassland habitats in the region. To assess the success of its efforts, the Park Commission is looking to the local community to lend a hand in an annual Grassland Bird Survey. A volunteer training and information session will be held on Sunday, April 10, from 1 to 3 p.m. at the Historic Hunt House.

In 2012, a 435-acre habitat restoration project was undertaken to improve the Mercer Meadows grasslands for native wildlife by planting native grasses and wildflowers. As most species of grassland bird populations are in decline, transforming Mercer Meadows into a large grassland habitat was essential to the area’s grassland breeding bird population and biodiversity. Breeding pairs of bobolinks, grasshopper sparrows, Eastern meadowlarks and American kestrels have since made Mercer Meadows their breeding grounds.

To evaluate the success of the project and influence future stewardship of Mercer Meadows, a yearly assessment of the breeding bird population in Mercer Meadows is vital. Become a citizen scientist and part of this important stewardship initiative by attending the Grassland Bird Survey volunteer training.

For more information and to register, please call 609-888-3218 or e-mail natureprograms@mercercounty.org.

For more information about future nature programs and other Mercer County Park Commission facilities, visit www.mercercountyparks.org.

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