Events & Programs

  • Thursday Morning Bird & Nature Walks
    • Thursday, Apr 2, 2015 – Thursday, Nov 5, 2015
      7:00am – 9:00am
    • Thursday
    • Location: Gilsland Farm, Greater Portland
    • Members: $5.00 - Non-members: $8.00

    Join us each Thursday for an easy stroll through Maine Audubon’s Gilsland Farm Sanctuary.  We will walk the property looking for birds, wildlife and plants. Bring your binoculars and a field guide if you have one. Please dress to be comfortable outside for two hours.

    We meet near the main parking lot. If you arrive late we are typically by the pond for the first 15-20 minutes before heading out.

  • Group Canoe Tour Adventures
    • Friday, May 1, 2015 – Wednesday, Sep 30, 2015
      8:00am – 6:00pm
    • Daily by registration only
    • Location: Scarborough Marsh
    • Price: $11/person with a 10 person minimum

    This 1 1/2 hour program provides a special opportunity for participants to explore the salt marsh. During this unique paddle adventure participants become a part of the dynamic Dunstan River habitat, observing its inhabitants in their natural setting. We will see crabs, fish, feeding birds, edible plants and more!
    Learn more

  • Salt Marsh Nature Explorations
    • Friday, May 1, 2015 – Wednesday, Sep 30, 2015
      9:00am – 4:00pm
    • Daily by registration only
    • Location: Scarborough Marsh
    • Price: $5/person with a 10 person minimum

    In this 1 1/2 hour interactive exploration, students have the opportunity for hands-on learning about the adaptations of plants and animals unique to the salt marsh. Participants will have a chance to catch and release fish, look through algae to find small organisms feeding there, and test the unique characteristics of the marsh mud in comparison to the upland soil. 
    Learn more

  • Wednesday Morning Bird & Nature Walks
    • Wednesday, May 13, 2015 – Wednesday, Sep 30, 2015
      7:00am – 8:30am
    • Location: Scarborough Marsh
    • Members: $3.00 - Non-members: $5.00

    IMG_2848The best birding is often early morning when birds are busy feeding. Look and listen for snowy egret, glossy ibis, herons, willet, sparrows and more. We start our tours at the nature center and carpool to birding “hotspots” in the immediate area. Birders of all levels and abilities are welcome to join. This program is led by a variety of bird leaders.


  • Daily Guided Canoe Tours
    • Wednesday, Jun 17, 2015 – Monday, Sep 7, 2015
      10:00am – 11:30am
    • Daily
    • Location: Scarborough Marsh
    • Adult Members: $10.00, Child Members: $9.00
      Adult Non-members: $12.00, Child Non-members: $9.00

    RVmjU5sOu6Bc9Kb62pDkfg2hOvJmzqvCcJ4pOqkK5fgDiscover the wildlife and plants of Scarborough Marsh as you paddle the Dunstan River. Gliding through the marsh, you will be exposed to its many inhabitants, from the snowy egret catching fish along the edge of the river to the mummichugs swimming in the water. A trained naturalist will show you the numerous marsh plants and even give you a taste of an edible one. This tour is suitable for both novice and experienced paddlers. 10 – 11:30 Daily. No reservations needed.


  • Art Exhibit: Endangered Blue by mp Warming
    • Saturday, Aug 1, 2015 – Saturday, Oct 31, 2015
      9:00am – 5:00pm
    • Location: Gilsland Farm, Greater Portland
    • Free

    Audubon imageThis Endangered Blue Art/Science print series was created for the preservation of American Blue butterflies. The science found within these graphics is derived from conservation efforts for the Karner Blue butterfly, discovered by the author Vladimir Nabokov. Nabokov discovered his Blue (lycaenidae melissa samuelis) in the city of Albany, formerly known as Karner, New York.

    Enormous conservation efforts are in effect at sites across the United States for the preservation of Nabokov’s Blue. Because of the little butterfly’s limited range and specificity to habitat, it is known as a harbinger of climate change. The Karner Blue could suffer extinction at any of these sites from one winter of limited snow-pack.

    In the Karner’s habitat, flora grows atop approximately sixty feet of sand. This flora must be burned every four or five years to maintain the acidity levels in the soil. This acid is needed for the native lupine flowers to grow. Karners have a symbiotic relationship to the lupines, as the mature butterflies lay their eggs on the plant, the caterpillars eat the leaves, and the newly hatched butterflies feed off the nectar. Conservation efforts include a routine of “prescribed burning”. If you look closely at the fire images in the prints, you will see the conservationists in their fire-safe gear.

    The three graphite butterfly drawings were created by the artist from Nabokov’s lepidoptera (moth and butterfly) collection at the American Museum of Natural History. High resolution images of Nabokov’s article “Notes on Neotropical Plebejinæ” and his letter to William Comstock, pictured in the prints, were provided by the American Museum of Natural History’s Special Collection Library. Most of the other drawings are by Maria Sybilla Merian, a seventeenth century nature artist whose drawings influenced Nabokov’s interest in lepidoptery. Science from Blue butterfly conservation efforts was derived from reports by the US Department of Fish and Game.

    The graphics also include information and images of other butterflies in the American Blue family. The larger colored butterflies in the prints are the artist’s scientific renderings of Xerces Blues. Xerces was the first American Blue butterfly known to have become extinct. In life Xerces were the same small size as all the American Blues, which are comparable in size to a postage stamp. Microscopic detailed images of the Xerces were lent to the artist for this project by the Essig Museum of Entomology at the University of California, Berkeley.

    These archival, limited edition prints were created especially for exhibition at the Nabokov Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia, which opened in April of 2015. Endangered Blue is now traveling to nature centers around the United States- beginning with this exhibition at the Audubon Society in the artist’s home state of Maine.

    The artist would like to add her appreciation for authors Lepidopterist Kurt Johnson and Arts & Culture Editor for the NY Times, Steve Coates, whose beautiful book Nabokov’s Blues: The Scientific Odyssey of a Literary Genius inspired this series.

  • September
  • World Shorebirds Day Primer – Workshop
    • Thursday, Sep 3, 2015 6:00pm – 8:00pm
    • Location: Gilsland Farm, Greater Portland
    • Members: $10 - Non-members: $15

    The second-annual Word Shorebirds Day is coming on September 6th and we want to help you prepare. Learning to identify shorebirds can be challenging: They come in all shapes and sizes. None very colorful, ranging from brown to gray. And we have had 47 different species of shorebirds occur in Maine! (48 including the now extinct Eskimo Curlew).

    Join our naturalist, Doug Hitchcox, for a lesson in identifying this diverse family and learn how size, shape, color, habitat, voice, and behavior all play critical roles in learning these birds.

    To further help you prepare for World Shorebird Day, you can join Doug for a field trip visiting local hotspots with a focus on shorebirds on September 5th. Please register for that trip here.

  • World Shorebirds Day Primer – Field Trip
    • Saturday, Sep 5, 2015 7:00am – 10:00am
    • Location: Gilsland Farm, Greater Portland
    • Members: $20 - Non-members: $30

    In honor of World Shorebird Day on September 6th, we want to teach you how to go shorebirding! Early September offers identification challenges between adult and immature birds, plus we may get lucky and see rarities such as Western or Buff-breasted Sandpipers.

    Join staff naturalist, Doug Hitchcox, for a van trip to local shorebird hotspots to study this diverse group as they stop over on their southbound migration. We will meet at Gilsland Farm in Falmouth at 7AM and travel by van.

    Registration questions: Beth Pauls - (207) 781-2330 x273

    Get prepared for the field trip by attending the World Shorebirds Day Primer Workshop on Thursday, Sept. 3,  for a lesson on shorebirds and how size, shape, color, habitat, voice and behavior all play critical roles in identifying these birds.

  • Scarborough Marsh Labor Day Weekend Extravaganza
    • Saturday, Sep 5, 2015 – Monday, Sep 7, 2015
    • Location: Scarborough Marsh
    • Free

    Join us for fun on our last full weekend and help the center out! We will have an end of the season sale in the store, door prizes, a used book sale, crafts for the kids, a bake sale on Saturday, a yard sale on Sunday and much more.



  • Family Fun: Signs of Fall (Tuesdays)
    signs of fall
    • Tuesday, Sep 8, 2015 – Tuesday, Dec 15, 2015
    • Location: Gilsland Farm, Greater Portland
    • Child Members: $140.00, Child Non-members: $185.00
    • Children under 2 free

    Bring your young family to participate in one hour of playful activities designed to encourage self-discovery, a sense of place and a budding awareness of the natural world. Come prepared to adventure outside!

     Themes include:

    * Monarch Butterflies
    * Falling Leaves
    * An Apple a Day
    * Little Brown Bats
    *How seeds Travel
    * Life in the Pond
    *Hoots in the Night
    *Giving Thanks
    *Animals getting ready for Winter
    * and more!

    *14 Weeks (no class on 11/24)

    *No charge for siblings under two and maximum of three children per adult.

    *Advanced registration is encouraged! Drop-ins welcome if space is available.      


  • Volunteer Naturalist Training at Fields Pond
    • Thursday, Sep 10, 2015 10:00am – 12:00pm
    • Location: Fields Pond, Greator Bangor
    • Free

    We are looking for new and returning volunteers to lead nature explorations this Fall. No previous knowledge or experience is necessary. Volunteers will learn teaching techniques, some species identification and general forest ecology. Call for more information.

    homeschool field trip

  • Book Discussion Group
    • Thursday, Sep 10, 2015 6:30pm – 8:00pm
    • second Thursday of each month
    • Location: Orono Public Library
    • Free

    Joyce Rumery has been leading this book discussion group for many years. All are welcomed and encouraged to discover the satisfaction of reading and sharing with others. Feed your mind and soul at the Orono Library on the second Thursday of each month. New participants are always welcome.

    Wilson, Edward O. The Social Conquest of Earth.  2013.  352pp.

    Drawing on his deep understanding of entomology and his extraordinarily broad knowledge of the natural and social sciences, Wilson makes a strong case for the synthesis of knowledge across disciplines. Understanding the biological origin of what makes us human can help us to build better theories of social and psychological interaction; in turn, understanding how other social species have evolved may help us to better understand the origin of our own.



  • Bar Harbor Pelagic Trip 2015
    • Saturday, Sep 12, 2015 6:00am – 2:00pm
    • Location: Bar Habor, ME - meet at 5:30am (see attached PDF below)
    • Members: $135 - Non-members: $175

    Maine Audubon’s annual fall pelagic trip out of Bar Harbor has long been a must-do outing for the region’s birders. The trip is so eagerly anticipated because of a great boat, great camaraderie, and, of course, great sightings of birds and marine mammals!

    Past trips have encountered all three jaeger species, a rare great skua, thousands of shearwaters and storm-petrels, gannets, puffins, razorbills, common murres, five different whale species, porpoises and dolphins, gray seals, and schools of tuna.

    Important information about this trip: Bar Harbor Pelagic Trip 2015

    Registration questions: Beth Pauls - (207) 781-2330 x273

  • Volunteer Naturalist Training at Fields Pond
    • Saturday, Sep 12, 2015 12:00pm – 2:00pm
    • Location: Fields Pond, Greator Bangor
    • Free

    We are looking for new and returning volunteers to lead nature explorations this Fall. No previous knowledge or experience is necessary. Volunteers will learn teaching techniques, some species identification and general forest ecology. Call for more information.

    homeschool field trip

  • E.Y.E.S. North – Emerging Youth Ecology Squad
    • Saturday, Sep 12, 2015 – Saturday, Dec 12, 2015
    • 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month
    • Location: Fields Pond, Greator Bangor
    • Child Members: $225, Child Non-members: $275

    eyesStudents K-5 will develop their ecology skills through outdoor investigation, nature journaling, making comparisons and recording data.

    This 7-week series of classes will take place the 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month from Sept. 12 through Dec. 12Scholarships available!

    This is a drop-off program and students should arrive with a lunch and dressed for the outdoors. 

    Each class of the 7-week series is designed to cover a different topic:

    September 12: Monarch Madness – Butterflies are nature’s jewels. We will feature our treasured Monarch, inspect milkweed plants for activity and search for adults and chrysalis. We will also learn about other species of butterflies. Butterfly migration, life cycle, habitat and other traits will be covered in fun, active ways.

    September 26: Bringing Nature Home – This day will be dedicated to finding simple ways to create suitable habitat for all kinds of species. We will design and construct a few prototypes as well. Possible designs will include hibernacula, bat houses, raised bed of some sort. . .

    October 10: Bats: Nighttime Navigators – Flying mammals? True Hibernators? Mysterious population declines? Learn about Maine bat species and ways to maintain and improve habitat for all bat populations for years to come.

    October 24: Forest “Fun”damentals – Forest ecology will drive our day from top to bottom. We will discuss concepts like interdependence and succession as we explore coniferous and mixed deciduous forests, read the landscape for prior land use and acquaint ourselves with diverse forest habitats.

    November 14: Talking Turkey – Wild turkey nearly became extinct in the early 1930s because of habitat loss and overhunting. We will learn how humans led conservation efforts to recover the species to a population today of over 7 million and we will discuss strategies for protecting other endangered and threatened species in Maine.

    November 28: Who is Still Here? Our state’s human population shifts dramatically when summer vistors leave and only winter residents remain. We’ll find out about the wildlife that joins us in surviving and thriving in Maine’s wonderful winter months.

    December 12: Tucking in Nature – As the days get shorter, animals get ready for the winter. We will uncover different habitats and find the creatures that are preparing for the cold season in and around the pond, marsh, meadow and forest.

    Registrants interested in individual classes must contact their Maine Audubon Educator to make special arrangements. Cost for a single class is $40 for members, $50 per non-members.


  • Fall Foliage Photography
    • Tuesday, Sep 15, 2015 5:00pm – 6:30pm
    • Location: Fields Pond, Greator Bangor
    • Price: $5.00

    signs of fallHave you always wanted to learn about photography? Want to get outside? Join us for an informal hike through our beautiful grounds and get tips and tricks along with stories and a few laughs from our instructor’s personal experience in freelance photography.

    There’s no better time or place to capture fall’s beautiful foliage and landscapes.


  • Teaching About Wildlife in Your Backyard
    • Wednesday, Sep 16, 2015 6:00pm – 7:30pm
    • Location: Gilsland Farm, Greater Portland
    • Members: $15 - Non-members: $20

    Research shows that daily encounters with nature help to foster a young child’s observation skills, sense of self/place and problem solving skills. This presentation is designed for anyone interested in attracting wildlife to their yard and sharing the experience with young children. Ample resources, activities and hands-on materials will be available. Light refreshments and snacks provided.

    Some topics covered:

    * The unbuilt playground
    * Ways to foster a sense of place
    * How to keep children and wildlife safe
    * What does wildlife need to survive?
    * What to plant?

    Maine Audubon delivers workshops/presentations on a variety of topics and can tailor it to any group size or need. Just ask!

  • SPEAKER SERIES: Bats on the Brink
    • Thursday, Sep 17, 2015 7:00pm – 9:00pm
    • Location: Gilsland Farm, Greater Portland
    • Members: $10 - Non-members: $15
    • This event is 21+

    The little brown bat was added to Maine’s endangered species list this year.

    Did you know that Maine has lost over 90% of its cave bats? Since 2006, the northeastern United States has lost over 5.7 million bats. The world’s only flying mammal, bats are critical to our ecoystem – and their rapidly declining numbers are cause for big concern.

    Learn why bats are struggling and what you can do to help. After a short presentation, attendees will have the chance to head outside and participate in a hands-on demonstration of bat detectors, which are part of a new citizen science study to track Maine’s bat population. Which of Maine’s eight bat species will we see in the night sky?

    Sip on complimentary beer from Allagash Brewing Company and wine and enjoy assorted appetizers. This event is 21+

    Many thanks to our amazing sponsor, Allagash Brewing Company!


    Want to get the amazing $10 member admission? Join Maine Audubon today and be the first to learn about future events like this.

    Featuring: Trevor Peterson, Senior Wildlife Biologist at Stantech and PhD Candidate, University of Maine

    About the Speaker Series

    Maine Audubon’s new monthly speaker series presents interactive lectures and discussions designed to stimulate conversation and concern around critical wildlife and habitat issues. The series features the region’s leading conservation experts to share research and propose solutions.

    Sponsored by Maine Magazine





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