Birders Meeting Moves to Worcester for March 3 Conference
Now in its 27th year, the popular conference brings together hundreds of birders, conservationists, and other nature lovers for a full day of respected speakers and engaging presentations, as well as informal opportunities for attendees to share news, knowledge, and enthusiasm about bird life.
For several years, the gathering had taken place at UMass Boston and previous to that, at Bentley University in Waltham.
The theme of the 2019 Birders Meeting is The Beauty of Birds. Keynote speaker will be ornithologist Richard Prum of Yale University, whose work was highlighted in the January 13 cover story of The New York Times Magazine, “How Beauty is Making Scientists Rethink Evolution.”
Dr. Prum will discuss the evolution of avian beauty in the lives of a variety of species (including birds of paradise and pheasants), accompanied by echoes of Darwin. Other presentations will focus on the microscopic structure of feathers in relation to color and sound; the importance of birdsong, from communication to echolocation; and how art and symbolism through history (and even pre-history) have been shaped by birds and their rich varieties of plumage.
Continental breakfast and lunch will be included with registration. Another popular feature of the event is the Vendors Area, which offers opportunities to purchase birding- and other outdoors-related equipment, accessories, and gifts, from scopes and binoculars to guidebooks and clothing.
Early-bird registration, which runs through Wednesday, February 20, is $65 for Mass Audubon members and $75 for nonmembers. From February 21 to March 3, add $10 to each ticket, member or nonmember. Registration for students and Mass Audubon staff is set at $40.
Wayne Petersen, Mass Audubon’s Director of Important Bird Areas and chief organizer of the conference, noted that “while Birders Meeting encourages like-minded devotees to share a commitment to these remarkable creatures in a communal setting, what is just as important are the individual experiences of the participants, and how they’ve forged unique connections to the natural world.
“We hope participating in Birders Meeting accomplishes all of this and more,” Petersen added, “including inspiring attendees, their families, and friends to get outside and spend some time in the company of birds!”
Mass Audubon protects 36,500 acres of land throughout Massachusetts, saving birds and other wildlife, and making nature accessible to all. As Massachusetts’ largest nature conservation nonprofit, we welcome more than a half million visitors a year to our wildlife sanctuaries and 20 nature centers. From inspiring hilltop views to breathtaking coastal landscapes, serene woods, and working farms, we believe in protecting our state’s natural treasures for wildlife and for all people—a vision shared in 1896 by our founders, two extraordinary Boston women. Today, Mass Audubon is a nationally recognized environmental education leader, offering thousands of camp, school, and adult programs that get over 225,000 kids and adults outdoors every year. With more than 125,000 members and supporters, we advocate on Beacon Hill and beyond, and conduct conservation research to preserve the natural heritage of our beautiful state for today’s and future generations. We welcome you to explore a nearby sanctuary, find inspiration, and get involved. Learn how at massaudubon.org.