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Berner To Discuss Bluebirds

Written By The Mountain Eagle on 2/29/24 | 2/29/24

JEFFERSON — Kevin Berner will be the next speaker for the Jefferson Historical Society. His presentation will be about how you can attract bluebirds to your yard and how to monitor your nest boxes. Schoharie County had been known as the Bluebird Capital of New York State in the 1990s and early 2000s due to the high rate of bluebird production. Former Cobleskill High School agriculture and conservation teacher Ray Briggs was the most critical individual in getting the public involved in helping in the recovery of bluebird populations. He formed and was the first president of the Schoharie County Bluebird Society. That group documented nearly 2000 bluebirds successfully fledging from county nest boxes some years. What had been a rarity locally and throughout their range became a common sight in this area.

Berner was a professor in the Fisheries, Wildlife, and Environmental Science Department for 30 years before retiring in 2017. He conducted bluebird research for a quarter century often with the help of students. Many of them authored or coauthored research papers with him. His research efforts concentrated on identifying which nest box designs were most attractive to bluebirds while deterring use by invasive bird species. He served as the Research Chairman for both the North American Bluebird Society and New York State Bluebird Society.

Berner’s presentation will be in the Jefferson Historical Society’s Judd Hall at 163 Main Street, Jefferson. It will be at 3pm on Sunday March 10th. The Nicholas J. Juried Museum of Jefferson History will be open within Judd Hall starting at 2pm before the meeting as well as after the meeting. This meeting is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

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