Bird watchers identify species new to Putnam County at Quarry Farm Hike

May 20—PANDORA — Visitors spotted 44 species of birds and one new species at the Quarry Farm's Spring Migration Bird Hike on Saturday morning.

Anne Coburn-Griffis, a volunteer at the farm, said the hike that David Smith and Deb Weston led was important for educating people about the importance of nature and how bird migration works.

"We have a lot of different types of habitats," Coburn-Griffis said. "What a lot of people don't realize is how many birds migrate through this area in the spring and how important that migration in areas that aren't treated or areas of freshwater where they can rest is. One of the things that Deb was telling people today was just how many miles the birds travel in migration and what they need in a place where they can rest before they move on, so it's pretty exciting when people come out to check things out."

Coburn-Griffis said the group of about six people plus the leaders identified a Mourning Warbler for the first time in the county.

That is a big deal for an event that has been held at the Quarry Farm for years.

"These birds are only here for a few weeks in the spring and the fall, coming back and forth to Mexico and Canada," Weston said. "They stop here for a bit and then make it to Lake Erie and then figure out where to go after that."

Coburn-Griffis added, "People don't think of Putnam County in regards to diversity of wildlife, and it's not something people look for, but we're in a good position in terms of there not being a lot of native and diverse plants or butterflies or birds documented here, but it's exciting when people can do that," Coburn-Griffis said.

Weston said there are plenty of opportunities for people to get involved in bird-watching or any other nature activities at the Quarry Farm.

"We have a migration hike every spring, but we also have a sparrow hike later in the summer, and then we do the Backyard Bird Count in February," she said. "And there is a 5K and a Family Day later in the year."

For anyone who wants to get involved in birdwatching on their own, Weston said the only thing they really need is a pair of binoculars and a desire to spot the birds.

But if they want to take it more seriously, ebird.org is the perfect place to start. You can also stay up to date on everything going on at the Quarry Farm by visiting the thequarryfarm.org.

Reach Jacob Espinosa at 567-242-0399.