, Newburyport, MA

June 29, 2013

Programs at Parker River National Wildlife Refuge

Newburyport Daily News

---- — NEWBURYPORT — The Parker River National Wildlife Refuge is offering the following free programs. Space may be limited, and advance registration is required for all programs, unless otherwise indicated. Call 978-465-5753 to register. Registration is not complete until you receive confirmation from a staff member. Note that outdoor programs may be canceled if there is inclement weather. Visit us on the Web for more information at or call refuge headquarters. The refuge visitor center is at 6 Plum Island Turnpike.

“Behind the Scenes” Refuge Tour

Held on the following days: Saturdays – July 13, 20, 27 at 9:30 a.m.; and Sundays – July 14, 21, 28 at 1 p.m. Tours last approximately 2 hours.

Join a refuge ranger for a behind the scenes tour of Parker River National Wildlife Refuge. Tour will be conducted via refuge van, with several brief “drive by” stops along the way. The tour will present an “up close and personal” look at the refuge through the multiple lenses of the cultural history of Plum Island and the Great Marsh, native wildlife and their habitats, and the role of refuge management in the conservation of these precious natural resources. Participants may be driven along areas on the refuge otherwise closed to the public. This guided two hour program is most appropriate for older teens and adults. Binoculars and/or a camera are recommended, but not required. Meet the ranger in the lobby of the Headquarters visitor center. Each session is limited to 10 participants; no more than 4 individuals per sign-up. Again, this is a vehicle-based tour, with limited stops on the Refuge.

Tide Pool Discoveries

Monday, July 15, at 10 a.m.; Wednesday, July 17, at 11:30 a.m.; Friday, July 19, at 1:30 p.m.; Monday, July 29, at 10 a.m.; Wednesday, July 31, at noon.

For generations children have enjoyed exploring tide pools and discovering the fascinating plants and animals that live in this realm between the tides. A refuge ranger will guide this hands-on program. Appropriate for children age 5-10. Each session is limited to 15 children. Each session is 90 minutes long, allowing time for travel to and from the beach. Meet the ranger at the visitor contact station at lot 1. Note: Parent/guardian must remain with his/her child for the entire duration of this program. Preregistration is required for this program.

Whip-poor-will Walk

Saturday, July 6, at 7:30 p.m.

Have you ever heard a strange bird singing in the background of a movie and wondered what it was? You may have been hearing the song of the Whip-poor-will. Join Nancy Landry, refuge volunteer and avid birder, for an evening of listening to the Whip-poor-will’s song and other night time birds. Participants will meet at the visitor contact station at parking lot 1 of the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge at 7:30 pm. Dress appropriately for weather conditions. Preregistration is required; enrollment limited to 15 people.

Photographic Society of Parker River National Wildlife Refuge

Next Meeting: Saturday, July 13, at 1:30 p.m.

Parker River NWR has its very own nature and wildlife photography club. The Photographic Society is intended for anyone – from beginners to professionals – who have an interest in nature and photography. The group meets once each month, generally on the second Saturday afternoon. Society activities include slide shows (of members’ work), intra-club mentoring and training, local photo safaris, online photo sharing, and involvement in the refuge’s photography-related programming. The Photographic Society also coordinates the refuge’s annual photo contest and The Phabulous Photo Weekend (held every October). The next monthly meeting will occur on Saturday, July 13, at 1:30 p.m. in the refuge visitor center auditorium. Preregistration is NOT required to attend this program. Call 978-465-5753 for more information about the Photographic Society.