Your wildlife sightings are news to us! If you have pictures or stories of encounters with fauna or flora in the area, please email them to us and interesting ones will be posted to this page.

Ron Payne



June is the peak time of bird breeding activity so most of our highlights from this month’s walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland revolve around that theme. One of the best sightings of the day was the Warbling Vireo nest at the park we had previously posted about. Nearly two weeks later, and the chicks were big enough to be Read the rest of this entry »

On Saturday, June 9, in partnership with Audubon Vermont and The Middlebury Area Land Trust, we held a bird banding event at the Bob Collins Conservation Farm in Weybridge. Audubon Vermont’s Mark LaBarr brought his mist nets and banding gear in hopes of catching Blue-winged and Golden-winged Warblers at what is s probably the best publicly-accessible shrubland habitat for these species in Addison County.

Luck was with us as one representative of each species was caught, given uniquely numbered leg-band, and best of all, show up close to our many attendees before being released. Other birds caught that morning included an Empidomax Flycatcher, Gray Catbird, Song Sparrow, Field Sparrow, Gray Catbird and American Goldfinch. And helping release the birds was a great treat for the youngsters in attendance.

– Ron Payne


On a recent evening visit to Otter View Park in Middlebury, I ran into a friend who told me they knew the location of a Warbling Vireo nest. They took me to where it was, and it couldn’t have been in a more convenient place to view it. Just off the main trail, in a Maple tree below a berm, putting the nest nearly at a reasonable height in relation to a viewer. Read the rest of this entry »


Two Black-bellied Whistling Ducks were found June 5 in Shoreham on Richville Pond, an impounded portion of the Lemon Fair River, by Wesley Butler who posted them in an eBird checklist. The normal breeding range of Black-bellied Whistling Ducks is in Florida, Texas and Mexico along the coasts, but eBird shows they go vagrant all over the east, as Read the rest of this entry »


Fifteen people came out for this month’s walk at Otter View Park and the Hurd Grassland taking advantage of the good weather to do some peak spring birding. Our walk began with a good look at a Baltimore Oriole from the parking lot. Further down we were serenaded by the beautiful fluting song of a Wood Thrush, and later got a look at the bird Read the rest of this entry »

Once again this May teams of OCAS birding volunteers will spend a 24-hour period scouring Addison County to find as many species as we can for our annual Birdathon fundraiser. All the money raised will go to support our educational and outreach programs. For example, this year, we have committed to give $5404 to 10 Addison County schools to fund field trips and class projects. We are also assisting with sending a local High School student to the National Audubon Society’s Hog Island camp in Maine. Money from Birdathon also goes to support our Cabin Fever Lecture Series, Otter Tracks Newsletter and many other programs, none of which would be possible without your financial support. You can help us out by either pledging an amount for each species found, giving us a flat gift, or by creating your own Birdathon team.


This past Sunday twenty-eight people came out to our annual Warbler Warm-up walk at the Waterworks Property in Bristol. The weather couldn’t have been better and we managed to have the ideal situation of there being a lot of birds while there weren’t many leaves on the trees. Some of the highlights were a Pine Warbler seen foraging Read the rest of this entry »

In this issue of Otter Tracks you will find the following articles:

    • Ecstatic Chaos
    • Migratory Bird Treaty Act Weakened
    • Earthworm Concerns
    • A New Fungal Disease in Snakes
    • Our 2018 Hog Island Camper
    • Wright Park Birding!
    • Tough Life for Upland Sandpipers
    • OCAS Trip to Mt. Mansfield
    • Opening Up New Worlds
    • OCAS Calendar of Events

Otter Creek Audubon Society members will receive a copy in the mail but you can always find the latest issues of Otter Tracks in color on our home page. You can also browse issues going back to the year 2000 in our Otter Tracks Archive.



This month’s wildlife walk took place on a morning with the beginnings of some very nasty weather. Even so, we did manage a good group of attendees as well as a good group of birds. Most of the action at Otter View Park was happening down on the river, where two Pied-billed Grebes were spotted diving on the creek. There were also Wood Read the rest of this entry »


Herpers, on Tuesday night, April 3 the rains brought out both herpers and amphibians. However, since it was both colder (~39° F) and drier than last Thursday night, there were fewer amphibians to go around. Read the rest of this entry »

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