Education

BIRDLINK Habitat Study

Plants Useful to Wildlife

Research

The East River State Park Birdlink installation will be ongoing, allowing study over time. Proceeding without interference offers BIRDLINK opportunity to:

  • Study processes of plant survival, migration, and replacement in a location.
  • Monitor bird populations at all installation sites with bird and insect counts.
  • Measure water quantity usage and community participation.
  • Map optimal locations for interventions.
  • BIRDLINK is working with environmental & urban planners to map bird migration paths through the city, hoping to use information about tree canopy, water availability, playgrounds lacking green space, and optimum distance between rest stops for migrating birds to locate the best sites for multiple future BIRDLINK in New York City.

Plants

Associating Birds With Specific Plant Species

 -This herbaceous perennial plant 2-3½' tal

-These compound flowers often bloom gradually, rather than simultaneously, with older flowers turning brown while younger flowers are still in the bud stage. The blooming period is late summer to early fall, and lasts about 1 month.

-The preference is full sun and moist conditions. However, this plant tolerates drier conditions, and can be surprisingly drought tolerant. The soil should contain high amounts of organic matter; some varieties of this plant also grow in moist sandy soil. Powdery mildew seems to bother this goldenrod less often than many others. It is easy to grow, but can spread aggressively in moist sunny places.

-Habitats include moist black soil prairies, edges of marshes, sandy pannes between dunes, calcareous seeps, borders of lakes, abandoned fields, and ditches along railroads.

Healing Properties of GoldenRod:
Antifungal, diuretic, diaphoretic, anti-inflammatory, expectorant, astringent, antiseptic, and carminative. Supports the kidneys, urinary track, skin, allergies, and cardiovascular system.

-Likes partial to full sun, can reach 3’-6’ height

-It prefers moist, rich soils, but is easily grown in a broad range of conditions, thriving in full sun or light shade in all but the driest soils. It does self-seed in favorable conditions.

Healing Properties:
A poultice of the root has been used in the treatment of pain, fevers and diarrhea. ... A decoction of the whole plant has been used in the treatment of all kinds of fevers and in the treatment of weak skin.

-This is a tall and conspicuous species that sometimes forms large clones. The umbels bear large balls of pink to purplish flowers that have an attractive odor. This species is known to form hybrids with both A. exaltata (in the east) and A. speciosa (in the west)

-Within its range it can be found in a broad array of habitats from croplands, to pastures, roadsides, ditches and old fields.

-Likes sun, moist soil, Medium to fine sandy, clayey, or rocky calcareous soils. Also found in well-drained loamy soils.

-NOT SHADE tolerant, needs lots of sunlight.


Healing Properties:
The latex from showy milkweed and common milkweed is used as a treatment for warts, ringworm, and other skin ailments. Root extracts of pleurisy root are used for respiratory disorders and those of common and swamp milkweed, for intestinal parasites.

-Has a lovely violet blossom and distinctively aromatic foliage.

-It is a familiar component of prairie and savanna communities on all but the wettest of soils. Native to most of North America, it often is cited for its historical medicinal applications among indigenous peoples. These include poultices for boils and lacerations, as well as tea infusions for headaches, indigestion and colds and flu.

-It likes full sun to partial sun exposure, and likes medium wet and dry soil.

Healing Properties:
Analgesic, Antibacterial, Antifungal, Antioxidant, Carminative, Emmenagogue

-Has a lovely violet blossom and distinctively aromatic foliage.

-It is a familiar component of prairie and savanna communities on all but the wettest of soils. Native to most of North America, it often is cited for its historical medicinal applications among indigenous peoples. These include poultices for boils and lacerations, as well as tea infusions for headaches, indigestion and colds and flu.

-It likes full sun to partial sun exposure, and likes medium wet and dry soil.

Healing Properties:
Analgesic, Antibacterial, Antifungal, Antioxidant, Carminative, Emmenagogue

Case Study NYC

City on a Migratory Bird Flyway

This is a map of bird habitat based on color: red orange are the tallest trees, green is trees, blue lines are historical waterways. The rest is urban concrete.

Pacific Flyway

Central Flyway

Mississippi Flyway

Atlantic Flyway

NYC On The Atlantic Flyway

New York City is part of the Atlantic Flyway. New York City resident birds include Tufted Titmouse, Blue Jay, Northern Cardinal, Robin and many more. Other colorful birds pass briefly through New York City on their way to larger woodlands and forests,  the orange Baltimore Oriole, the red and black Scarlet Tanager, the yellow patterned with black and greens  Warblers. They fly through the night with southwest winds during the spring migration – that  begins in February and tapers off rapidly by early June. They pass through again in autumn. Birds come from the Arctic tundra  the Amazon rainforest, the Argentine pampas, and places in between. They leave our latitudes each fall when food sources disappear with colder weather. The seasonal shifts link us with the entire Western Hemisphere.

Credit: Roger F. Pasquier: Interrupted Landscapes: The Future of Bird Migration

New York Species Of Special Concern

Local and Migratory Birds

Robins - the iconic bird of childhood currently suffer a 30% loss; part of a large trend among bird populations. One-third of wintering North American bird populations have declined since 1966. The North American Bird Conservation Initiative (NABCI) states that more than one-third of North American bird species are at risk of extinction.

Migratory Birds of New York

Northern Cardinal
Northern Flicker
Orchard Oriole
Pine Grosbeak
Pine Siskin
Pine Warbler
Purple Finch
Red-breasted Nuthatch

American Tree Sparrow
Baltimore Oriole
Black-capped Chickadee
Blue Grosbeak Blue Jay
Brown Thrasher
Chipping Sparrow
Common Redpoll

Dark-eyed Junco
Eastern Bluebird
Eastern Meadowlark
Eastern Towhee
Evening Grosbeak
Field Sparrow
Hermit Thrush
House Finch

Red-winged Blackbird
Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Ruby-throated
Hummingbird
Song Sparrow
Red-breasted Nuthatch
White-throated Sparrow
Yellow-rumped Warble

Community Science & Educational Outreach

Community Events And Educational Programming

BIRDLINK is living art form spotlighting migratory birds in urban spaces. It is an artistic response to hemispheric patterns of declining bird populations and our current Anthropocene Era, (i.e. the geological age in which we live now where humans dominate earth's climate and ecosystems and nature is no longer wild). BIRDLINK’s spiraling grids of native plants support a slice of biodiversity, and an immersive art experience for people in an urban setting, park or residence.

  • Birdlink acts as a Living Lab, where failure of certain species, and survival (and wild colonization) of others provides valuable lessons about what is really happening ecologically.
  • Birdlink starts a conversation about requirements for modular wildlife life support  units into urban area "deserts".
  • Highlights need for a structural understanding of historical and potential future wildlife habitat networks that reconnect not just backyards, streetscapes and parks but  a whole city to the world as a bird sees it.
  • Thinks about Connected Metropolitan Open Space System where every connected grass blade fragment becomes important from an insect an Bird eye view.
  • Introduces "Thinking like an Ant" and "What does a bird see?" concept to general public in a tangible physical form.
  • Allows Inter species reconnection thinking and shock of "Where did all the insects go?"
  • Starts debate about cheap low cost self maintaining wildlife units.
  • Birdlink as an advertising billboard for bird brains - thinking like another species.
  • Started thinking about ways to introduce politically acceptable wildlife support systems to a market that largely treats ecology as a consumer "feel good" lifestyle choice.
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