ALBANY, NY – The globally rare, nationally significant and locally distinct Albany Pine Bush Preserve provides the ideal setting to celebrate Earth Day. With an array of activities and programs, children, families, neighbors and volunteers can enjoy all that the 3,200-acre Preserve and its state-of-the-art “green building” interpretive center have to offer.
The activities begin on Tuesday, April 14 at the Albany Pine Bush Discovery Center with the Friends Annual Meeting and Woodcock Walk at 6:00pm. The FRIENDS of the Pine Bush Community Inc. invite you to attend their 2015 Annual Membership Meeting and Potluck Dinner, followed by the program: The Wild and Wacky Woodcock, led by Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission staff.
On Thursday, April 16 at 7:00pm, the Discovery Center’s Environmental Educators will offer a program called Monarch Butterflies: An Endangered Migration. The Pine Bush provides habitat for more butterfly species than any place in New York State. Ernest Williams, professor of biology at Hamilton College and butterfly ecologist for more than 30 years, discusses the long-term decline of North America’s much beloved monarch butterfly and describes conservation initiatives aimed at reversing the downward trend.
On Saturday, April 18th volunteers are invited to gather at 9:00am at the Discovery Center to work on a variety of conservation projects suitable for all ages including: trails work, pulling invasive honeysuckle, tree planting, and trash clean-up. All equipment will be provided. Please dress appropriately for the weather and outside working conditions and bring drinking water. Projects will end at noon and lunch will be provided for all volunteers.
Programs on April 14, 16 and 18 are free. Pre-registration is required for all programs. The Discovery Center is located at 195 New Karner Road in Albany. To sign up for any of these programs, please visit www.AlbanyPineBush.org and click on “Events Calendar” at the top of the page or call 518-456-0655.
BACKGROUND INFORMATION ON THE PINE BUSH:
The 3,200 – acre Albany Pine Bush Preserve (APBP), located in New York’s Capital District, protects one of the best remaining inland pitch-pine scrub oak barrens in the world. This extraordinary fire-dependent habitat provides homes for many plants and animals and contains 55 New York State-designated wildlife Species of Greatest Conservation Need, including the federally endangered Karner blue butterfly. The Preserve is a National Natural Landmark, a New York State Unique Area, Bird Conservation Area and a National Audubon Society Important Bird Area. Characterized by rolling sand dunes and miles of trails, the Preserve offers visitors many recreational opportunities including hiking, bird watching, cross-country skiing, horseback riding, mountain biking, hunting, fishing and canoeing. The Albany Pine Bush Preserve Commission is a public-private partnership created by the NYS Legislature in 1988 to protect and manage the APBP and provide the public with educational and recreational opportunities.
As the gateway to the Pine Bush, the Discovery Center is a state-of-the-art “green” certified interpretive center where visitors come to understand why the Pine Bush is rare and special. A visit to this unique destination is an exciting exploration where learning comes naturally through interactive exhibits, an outdoor Discovery Trail, and numerous programs on the ecology, natural history, cultural history and management of the Pine Bush. Admission to the Discovery Center is free (there is a small fee for programs). The Center is open daily weekdays 9am-4pm, weekends and most holidays 10am-4pm. For more information, visit www.AlbanyPineBush.org or call 518-456-0655.