Could climate change drive the Bicknell’s Thrush, a rare, migratory songbird, from its nesting grounds in the highest elevations of the Adirondacks? Biologists say with warming temperatures, they expect to see changes in the bird’s habitat over the next several decades. This month, nearly 200 volunteers will be heading to the summits of the High Peaks, and neighboring mountain ranges in New England, in search of the Bicknell’s Thrush and 9 other migratory songbirds that nest in some of the highest elevations of those mountains and the Adirondacks.
The data they collect from more than a hundred trails and locations will help researchers with the Vermont Center for Ecostudies working to protect those birds. The bird’s summer nesting grounds here in the Northeast and winter home in the Caribbean have been threatened by pollution, development, and increasingly, many worry, climate change.
Those Citizens Scientists will be collecting hundreds more observations during the month of June. You can visit the Mountain Birdwatch website to learn more, or even sign up to become a volunteer. Several of the Summit Stewards and DEC Biologists — working in the High Peaks have been observing the Bicknell’s Thrush for years and sharing that data with Mountain Birdwatch.
This story is part of Peril and Promise, a public media initiative by WNET exploring the impact of Climate Change here in the Adirondacks and around the world. This June, join us for Sinking Cities, a Peril and Promise series examining the impact of climate change on four major coastal cities.