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1st Annual Monadnock Region Birding Cup
September 14, 2019 @ 5:00 am - 5:00 pm
Teams must register by September 1st in order to be guaranteed t-shirts.
Over the course of 12 hours, beginning at 5:00 am, teams of birders will scour the Monadnock region for birds. The goal? To identify as many species by sight or sound as possible and raise funds for student-driven bird conservation and research. While species checklists can be submitted via email, all teams and participants are encouraged to attend the post-competition celebration held at Antioch University New England (40 Avon Street, Keene, New Hampshire, 03431). Pizza, beverages, and goodie bags will be handed out starting at 5:30 pm, and the Awards Ceremony will commence at 6:00 pm.
Rain or shine, this event will take place on Saturday, September 14th. So mark your calendars, gather a team, and start your strategizing. Not from the area? Check out eBird for the most species-diverse places to visit and likelihood of detecting certain species.
Why Bird the Monadnock Region?
Located in southwest New Hampshire, the Monadnock Region is perhaps the best-kept birding secret in the Granite State. From the summit of Mount Monadnock, the most-climbed mountain in the United States, to the shores of the Connecticut River and everywhere in-between, the Monadnock Region offers superb birding opportunities to both beginning and advanced birders alike.
Each September during the peak of fall migration, countless numbers of waterfowl, raptors, and songbirds pour through the area, joining an already stunning array of bird species that call the Monadnock Region home. Over 180 species of birds have been identified in the Monadnock Region during the month of September, including 14 species of waterfowl, 12 species of shorebirds, 17 species raptors, and 27 species of “confusing” fall-plumaged warblers.
Within the Monadnock Region are numerous birding hotspots recognized on local-, state-, and continental-scales. Two shining examples of this include the Middle Connecticut Important Bird Area (IBA) (Cheshire County) and Pack Monadnock, located in Miller State Park (Hillsborough County- Peterborough). Stretching along the entire western border of Cheshire County (and beyond), the Middle Connecticut IBA is used by a wide variety of waterfowl during migration and is one of the state’s best areas for viewing Common Nighthawks during fall migration. Situated within the Wapack Range, Pack Monadnock is the best place to view migrating raptors in the state and there is no better time than September when thousands of Broad-winged Hawks and other species of raptors could be viewed in a single outing!
In addition to spectacular birding opportunities, the Monadnock Region is home to breathtaking landscapes, picturesque towns, and quintessential New England culture. From famed hiking trails to secret swimming holes, artist retreats to covered bridges, sugar shacks to upscale dining, most everything New England is famous for can be found in the Monadnock Region. Once you experience the Monadnock Region, you will understand why it is New Hampshire’s best-kept secret!