Nature Blog

Bennington Barred Owl

On August 5th, 2020 the Center for Wild Bird Rehabilitation (CWBR) received a Barred Owl from Bennington, VT. The finder of the owl noticed the bird hopping around their front yard, unable to fly away when approached. VINS staff advised the finder on how to safely pick up the bird and contain it in a box.

Project FeederWatch Season Summary

Another season of the citizen science program, Project FeederWatch is behind us, and it was a very big winter! Now in its 32nd year, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s winter bird-watching project aims to connect people with the wildlife in their backyards, and with the world of scientific research.

Dewey: The Wild Resident Barred Owl of VINS

by Anna CaputoAmericorps Member Dewey. Photo by Emily Johnson. This winter has brought some interesting wildlife to VINS. Boreal migrants like Pine Grosbeaks and Common Redpolls have come into the rehab center with broken wings or head trauma. A Pileated Woodpecker came to the suet at our bird feeders. Even subnivean or “under-snow-dwelling” mammals like…

Don’t Feed That Owl!

by Bren LundborgWildlife Keeper In the midst of an early March snowstorm, we received yet another bird that many of you have probably been seeing in high numbers: a Barred Owl. While they are normally a common patient of ours, this winter we have been receiving greater numbers than usual coming in for treatment (as…

In Memory of Louis, the Great Gray Owl

by Lauren AdamsLead Wildlife Keeper Louis, 1992-2018. Photo by Grae O’Toole. Saturday, December 8th marked the end of an era at VINS. We lost a very special member of the VINS family, Louis, our Great Gray Owl. Louis was a favorite of visitors to VINS for many years. He lived a long life, and passed…

Tiny Patient: Rehabilitating an Eastern Screech Owl

by Anna Autilio, Environmental Educator and Grae O’Toole, Wildlife Keeper The screech owl could barely open his eyes at first. Early in the new year, a tiny treasure arrived at the Center for Wild Bird Rehabilitation—a beautiful Eastern Screech Owl in need of some serious care. The bird was found in Orwell, VT, over 65…

Winter Storm: Snowy Owl

by Anna Autilio Lead, Environmental Educator VINS Ambassador “Snowy” – Allegra Boverman Winter has barely begun, and it is already shaping up to be another Snowy Owl irruption year! These stunning, mysterious arctic visitors will find themselves looking farther than usual for a wide, expanse of hunting ground to pass the winter, delighting those of…

The Fab Four: Meet Our New Birds!

by Anna Autilio Lead, Environmental Educator This summer, VINS was fortunate to welcome a whopping four new birds to the education team. We are excited to introduce you to them, and look forward to your meeting them eye-to-eye as raptor ambassadors! Miami, the Eastern Screech Owl When next you come to VINS, keep your eyes…

How Do You Talk With Owls: Flustered

by aJbishopCWBR Volunteer I have the keys to their enclosures. The raptors. I open them, one at a time, and do service for owls and hawks and eagles and falcons. I rake and clean and water while they, wild talon shod birds, study my every move. As I work, I can’t help but ask: how…

The Yearly Cycle: Vernal Pools

by Anna AutilioEnvironmental Educator Trout Lily (Erythronium americanum) One of the most beautiful natural illustrations of the cycle of the year is found in the vernal pool. Often called “ephemeral”, these pools provide crucial, temporary homes for some distinct wild plant and animal species. Filling in the spring and drying in the summer, they track…