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Bird Town Committee

Meeting Time

The Bird Town Committee meets the First Monday of each month at 6:30 pm in Burkart Hall located at 56 Keeley Avenue.

*2022 only: In July and September, the Committee will meet the First Wednesday of the month.

Committee Members

Council Liaison:  Lori Kesilman

Chair: Tom Price (2023)
Vice Chair: Lucy Siegfried (2024)
Secretary: Lori Kesilman
Members:
Cristi Charpentier (2022)
Marge Eberz (2022)
David Horne (2022)
Jane McGroaty (2023)

Agendas and Minutes Link


Bird Town was first established as an Audubon PA program in 2010 to work in partnership with local municipalities and like-minded organizations to promote community-based conservation actions to create a healthier, more sustainable environment for birds, wildlife, and people.

Today, the Bird Town initiative is administered by Bird Town Pennsylvania. This revitalized and expanding grassroots program provides tools for municipalities to engage, educate and empower their residents, schools, and businesses to make more positive social, economic, and ecologically friendly decisions and promotes a culture of conservation where everyone is a potential steward of nature in their own backyard and beyond.

Restoration of natural systems and native plant communities for birds, butterflies, and other wildlife, on both private and public lands, has positive impacts on our communities including creating a healthier environment, reducing stormwater runoff, greenhouse gases and maintenance time, increasing property values and building community pride.

Please visit the Bird Town Pennsylvania website at https://birdtownpa.org/ to learn much more about the Bird Town program.


Committee Duties & Responsibilities

  • In 2013, New Britain Borough became the 23rd Bird Town in Pennsylvania and the ninth Bird Town in Bucks County. A volunteer committee of Borough residents was established and given responsibility for the Bird Town program in the Borough. The responsibilities of the Borough’s Bird Town Committee are:
    • To serve as New Britain Borough’s representative for Bird Town Pennsylvania’s Bird Town program.
    • To promote and implement the goals of the Bird Town program and oversee Bird Town activities within the Borough.
    • To promote conservation and community-based actions that create a healthier, more sustainable environment for both birds and people.
    • To educate Borough residents about the importance of native ecosystems to birds, pollinators, and other wildlife.
    • To encourage the restoration and creation of native plant communities on both public and private properties throughout the Borough.
    • To encourage Borough residents and property owners to create healthy habitat for birds, insects, and other wildlife in their landscapes by removing invasive exotic species, planting native species, reducing pesticide use, conserving water, protecting water quality, and adopting other healthy-yard practices.
    • To encourage Borough residents to register their properties in the various habitat recognition and certification programs supported by the Bird Town program.
    • To serve as an advisory body to Borough Council and the Borough’s various commissions and committees on issues related to the goals of the Bird Town program.

Committee Activities

Since 2013, the Bird Town Committee has held multiple educational workshops and table events to promote the goals of the Bird Town program and to encourage Borough residents to register their properties with Audubon’s “Bird-Friendly Habitat Network.” All of the Borough’s public spaces have been registered in that network, as well. The Bird Town Committee has also promoted citizen-science initiatives such as the Audubon Christmas Bird Count, Project FeederWatch, and the Great Backyard Bird Count. It has promoted the use of bird and pollinator-friendly native plants on both privately and publicly owned properties in the Borough, held numerous native plant sales, sponsored an annual native plant pop-up park at the Town Center, and landscaped the Borough office and Burkart Hall properties with native plants.


NWF “Community Wildlife Habitat” Certification

In 2022, the Bird Town Committee succeeded in having New Britain Borough certified as a National Wildlife Federation “Community Wildlife Habitat,” one of only five such certified municipalities in the state of Pennsylvania.

In order to gain this certification, we needed a substantial number of properties (including homes, schools, businesses, churches, and public spaces) to be officially certified by the NWF as wildlife habitat. A wildlife habitat is free of pesticides and provides food, water, cover, and nesting sites. A vital component of such a habitat is native plants, which are often the only usable food sources for native insects and birds.

We still encourage Borough residents to certify their properties as wildlife habitat. The certification application can be found and submitted online at https://www.nwf.org/garden-for-wildlife/certify.


Additional Backyard Habitat Programs

Bird Town Pennsylvania supports numerous property registration and certification initiatives and encourages property owners to take part in these programs. An explanation about why these supported habitat programs are important and the complete list of them can be found at https://birdtownpa.org/backyard-habitat-programs/


Resources

Websites


Facebook


Publications

Native Plants


Habitat for Birds and Wildlife


Habitat for Insects and Pollinators


Natural Landscaping


Healthy Yard Practices


Bird Feeding and Nest Boxes