Shawangunk Grasslands

Ulster County, New York

American Kestrels, from “Birds of New York” (1914). Cornell University Library

 

The 597-acre Shawangunk Grasslands National Wildlife Refuge (NYS e-Bird hotspot) was established in 1999 at the site of what was formerly the Galeville Military Airport. The refuge supports grassland-dependent migratory birds and wintering raptors and has been designated as an Important Bird Area by Audubon New York.

In the winter, you can see Short-eared Owls, Northern Harriers, and Northern Shrikes here;  and in the summer, breeding American Kestrels, Eastern Meadowlarks, and Bobolinks can be found. Less common sparrows—including Grasshopper and Vesper sparrows—also frequent the grasslands. In early summer 2017, the refuge hosted a Dickcissel and a Henslow’s Sparrow, attracting excited birders from near and far!

 

 

If you’d like the support the refuge and its birds, check out Friends of Shawangunk Grasslands National Wildlife Refuge.