Seth Benz leads a Gilley birding expedition. PHOTO COURTESY OF WENDELL GILLEY MUSEUM

Birding course offered at Wendell Gilley Museum 

SOUTHWEST HARBORWhile poets might say that April is “the cruelest month,” birders strongly disagree. For them, April is a month of excitement and anticipation because birds are starting to nest, establish their territories and migrate to and through Mount Desert Island. Join the Wendell Gilley Museum for a mini course called “Birds of Spring: Anticipation and Appreciation” with Seth Benz, director of the Schoodic Institute bird ecology program, starting on April 5.  

“April, at our latitude, is a month of anticipation for returning birds. It is also a time of exodus for species that have spent their winter with us,” Benz said. “By early May, some bird species have begun nesting, others are establishing territories and still others are migrating through our neighborhoods.”   

This four-part course will be offered as a sequential program combining classroom presentations with a field excursion each week. While each week is designed to build upon the previous week’s experience, course content will be accessible enough that each week alone will be a learning experience, designed to help participants immerse themselves in the bird world. 

Sessions take place on April 5, 12 and 26, and on May 3, at the Gilley from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Each session costs $35; register for each independently online at There is no online option for this workshop. 

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