Wednesday, April 3, 2019

April Announcements

Good morning all! We have several topics to update you on...

1. New monitor field training
2. String fencing dates
3. Scheduling
4. Information for those who missed training
5. West Haven parking

1) New monitor field training with CT DEEP and AAfCW staff will be 10:00am on April 13th at a beach to be determined - we will let you know ASAP! It will either be West Haven or Stratford.

2) We have our spring string fencing dates as follows - PLEASE try to attend to assist!
  • Milford Point (McKinney NWR) - Wednesday, April 10th, 9:00am, meet in the Connecticut Audubon Society Coastal Center parking lot, 1 Milford Point Road. Please email shaun_roche@fws.gov to RSVP.  Rain date April 11th.
  • Griswold Point, Old Lyme - Thursday, April 11th, 9:00am, meet at the I-95 exit 70 commuter lot at 8:45am to carpool. Please email dgumbart@tnc.org to RSVP. Rain date April 12th.
  • Long Beach, Stratford – Sunday, April 14th, 10:00am, rain date April 15th.
  • Sandy/Morse Points, West Haven - Wednesday, April 17th, 1:00pm, rain date April 19th.
  • Bluff Point State Park, Groton - Tuesday, April 23rd, 10:00am, rain date April 24th.
Remember that any and all volunteers are welcome including those who are not monitors. Volunteers should bring: work gloves, water, a snack, appropriate footwear, sunscreen, sunglasses, hats and whatever else you may need avoid too much sun. These locations can either be quite cool or very warm depending on the day so dress for any weather. A pocket knife or multi-tool can be handy and a sledge hammer or mallet can be helpful to bring. Plan for heavy lifting and toting, but be mindful of your safety. Less intensive work needed includes stringing posts and putting up signs. Please email us at ctwaterbirds@gmail.com if you can make it to Long Beach, Sandy/Morse, or Bluff Point, and thank you!

3) We have a very high number of monitors this year which is wonderful! It will help to ensure widespread beach coverage. It makes the scheduling process a bit slower, and please continue to send in your desired beaches, dates, AM or PM times, here to this email address at ctwaterbirds@gmail.com.

The list of available beaches include:
  • Sherwood Island State Park in Westport
  • Pleasure Beach in Bridgeport - accessible via seasonal free Bridgeport water taxi at 1 Seaview Avenue, Bridgeport, or by walking approximately one mile from Long Beach in Stratford
  • Long Beach in Stratford
  • Russian Beach in Stratford
  • Short Beach in Stratford
  • Milford Point in Milford
  • Silver Sands State Park in Milford
  • Sandy/Morse Points in West Haven 
  • Bluff Park State Park in Groton
If you are interested in monitoring Griswold Point in Old Lyme please email us and you can discuss it with CT DEEP. There will also be smaller beaches that we will request some monitors to check on as the season progresses.

4) If you were unable to attending training on March 30 as a new monitor please try to attend the field training session. If you cannot do that please email us at ctwaterbirds@gmail.com and we will set you up with a staff member to meet you in the field and go over the basics. If you are a returning monitor who did not attend the refresher training please email us for your badge for 2019, and please let us know your schedule as usual. We will take care of the required paperwork with CT DEEP for new and past monitors who did not do so yet in 2019 in as well.

5) If you are a monitor at Sandy/Morse Points in West Haven you will need to display a parking pass or a West Haven beach pass (as a resident) or police may issue a $100 parking fine. These will NOT be waived. Parking in nearby private lots risks towing or fines. CT DEEP or AAfCW is not responsible for parking violations/fines. However, the City of West Haven will provide you with a parking pass for monitoring this year if you can provide your full name, license plate information, make/model of your vehicle, and mailing address. Please email it to ctwaterbirds@gmail.com and we will pass it on to CT DEEP and West Haven. They can be mailed to you or picked up at City Hall; hours are Monday to Friday, 8am-5pm.

Please remember that poor weather conditions (rain, temperatures under 50 degrees, extreme wind) are times when you will want to cancel your monitoring session, and we will have a lot of them during the first half of April. Thank you all! Please email ctwaterbirds@gmail.com with any questions. We will be in touch again soon, and hopefully be in the field more regularly in the next couple of weeks.

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