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Trailblazers Adventure Camp, August 2017

The final week of Trailblazers Adventure Summer Camp was the perfect conclusion to our most exciting summer to date! With four days of field trips around southeastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey, we were able to compile a high species total of some very exciting birds!

Schedule of the Week:

Monday - BSES Nature Trail & Concord Nature Trail

Tuesday - Exton Park

Wednesday - The Westtown School

Thursday - Palmyra Cove Nature Park

Friday - BSES Nature Trail

Monday was greeted with consistent and heavy rainfall all day, but that didn't keep us from getting out and enjoying nature! We spent a fair amount of time inside, but students and staff alike donned our rain gear and visited both the BSES Nature Trail and Concord Nature Trail. We have had bouts of light precipitation with Trailblazers in the past, but this was the first time we've ever had torrential rain for camp. The end of a five year streak!

Tuesday's conditions were far more inviting, leading us to Exton Park. Exton Park is a goldmine for local birding. Situated near the Exton Mall, Exton Park is host to a variety of high-quality habitats that attract waterfowl, marsh birds, and songbirds alike. As we parked at the Chester Valley Trailhead, we observed a Great Blue Heron in the parking lot's pond, which was seen by all through the scope. Then, we observed another Great Blue Heron, Indigo Bunting, and a flyover Peregrine Falcon!

Wednesday sent us right up the road to the Westtown School. This 600 acre campus is home to not only great habitat but rich ornithological history. Many early ornithologists attended the Westtown School as students including Thomas Say, John Cassin, and John Kirk Townsend. Also, Edwin B. Forsythe, a Congressman from New Jersey who has a National Wildlife Refuge named in his honor, attended the school. Here, we were treated to spectacular views of Green Heron, Wood Duck, and a family of four (potentially five) Belted Kingfishers! Also, the students were able to beat the heat with a creek walk in Chester Creek.

Thursday was our furthest field trip destination all summer as we ventured across state lines to visit Palmyra Cove Nature Park in New Jersey. Nestled under the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge, this area could seem like an unlikely place for great wildlife, but this trip featured some of our most exciting finds all summer! We had up-close views of Osprey, Great Egret, and a juvenile Little Blue Heron! However, the most exciting observation of the day seemed to be the opening of the Tacony-Palmyra Bridge for a passing boat - Go figure!

All told, we had a super exciting summer! Thank you for your continued support of Trailblazers, and we look very forward to kicking off our 2017-2018 school year of events and activities this September!

Bird Species List for the Week (58 Species):

Canada Goose

Wood Duck


Double-crested Cormorant

Great Blue Heron

Great Egret

Little Blue Heron

Green Heron

Black Vulture

Turkey Vulture


Cooper's Hawk

Laughing Gull

Ring-billed Gull

Herring Gull

Rock Pigeon

Mourning Dove

Chimney Swift

Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Belted Kingfisher

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Downy Woodpecker

Northern Flicker

Peregrine Falcon

American Kestrel

Eastern Wood-Pewee

Eastern Kingbird

Red-eyed Vireo

Blue Jay

American Crow

Fish Crow

Northern Rough-winged Swallow

Purple Martin

Barn Swallow

Carolina Chickadee

Tufted Titmouse

White-breasted Nuthatch

House Wren

Carolina Wren

Eastern Bluebird

American Robin

Gray Catbird

Northern Mockingbird

European Starling

Cedar Waxwing

Common Yellowthroat

American Redstart

Yellow Warbler

Chipping Sparrow

Song Sparrow

Eastern Towhee

Northern Cardinal

Indigo Bunting

Red-winged Blackbird

Brown-headed Cowbird

House Finch

American Goldfinch

House Sparrow


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