In The Press: The Urban Audubon
“Engaging Community, Supporting Urban Birds”
Art and environmental awareness come together in BIRDLINK, a proposed network of native plant sculptures designed to connect isolated patches of urban bird habitat while promoting awareness of migratory bird species that pass through our city. The brainchild of artist and landscape architect Anina Gerchick, BIRDLINK made its debut in prototype form last July at NYC Audubon’s seasonal nature center on Governors Island. From there, the BIRDLINK prototype moved to East River State Park in Williamsburg, and plans are underway for a separate full-scale version to debut this summer in Sara D. Roosevelt Park in lower Manhattan.
All versions of BIRDLINK are planted with a variety of native plants such as Purple top Tridens and Black-eyed Susans to attract both birds and insects. The plants, donated by New York City Department of Parks & Recreation Greenbelt Native Plant Nursery, are rooted in a series of wire mesh baskets supported by modular bamboo ladder-like structures. This free-standing, spiraling green wall of native plants is designed to be a conversation starter for people, a valued rest stop for migratory birds, and an inspiration for backyard and rooftop gardeners. Over time, Gerchick envisions multiple installations, with the goal of linking wildlife corridors through neighborhoods in New York City that will support local and migratory birds and motivate local communities to support habitat conservation and biodiversity.