(alphabetical by last name)
Steve Abbott has enjoyed birding for more than 4 decades. Born and raised in New Hampshire, he moved to Sacramento in 1997 and quickly became a part of the birding community in California. He has led field trips for several birding festivals over the last 25 years and enjoys helping others discover new species. Since becoming a Field Tech for Swarovski Optik several years ago, Steve has been able to share his passion for birds at various festivals across the United States.
Dorothy Bedford was introduced to birding on the east side of Narragansett Bay by her new father-in-law in 1985, where the johnny cakes are thin and crispy; the spark was either an Osprey or a Yellow Warbler (they saw both that day). Decades of work, family, and Girl Scout leading followed, but by 2012 and retired, her bird thing was unleashed. Picking up where she had left off as a competitive sailor, she found she had a penchant for waterbirds, and now leads ducks, waders, shorebirds and seabirds for West Chester Bird Club, Chester County, PA (her permanent residence); and birds the Newport County, RI, coastal waters and marshes regularly from a second home there. Dorothy is a Hog Island Audubon Camp alumna, where she is a member of the Seabird Institute Advisory Council. Her passion for seabirds takes her around the globe, although her husband of 38 years generally prefers being "base camp." The photo is from a recent trip to the Falkland Islands.
Seth Benz has served as Assistant to the Curator at Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, director of Hog Island Audubon Camp, and is the current director of Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park's Bird Ecology Program. In his current role, Seth coordinates citizen scientists' efforts to monitor bird migrations, pelagic seabird concentrations, and biodiversity and phenology observations in the Acadia Region. He is a current American Birding Association Youth Birding Mentor and has recently completed a three-year term on the Maine Bird Records Committee. Seth and wife Sue reside in Belfast, Maine with their Australian Shepherd rescue pooch, Beazie.
Chris Brown has been an active birder from a very young age; he maintains that among his earliest memories is the first bird he identified without use of a field guide: a Brown-headed Cowbird in his suburban New Jersey backyard, around the age of 5. After beginning his college career at the University of Montana, Chris took several years to gain experience through biological field work. This chapter of his life led him through jobs in 10 states and with multiple bird observatories, including breeding bird surveys in Montana, bird and habitat surveys in several other Rocky Mountain States, breeding bird atlas work in Ohio and counting migrating hawks and seabirds in Cape May and Sandy Hook, New Jersey. He is now a professional guide with Wildside Nature Tours.
Anne Dalton was born and raised in Portland Maine and graduated from Brigham Young University with a degree in Animal Science. She has spent most of her working years raising boys with her husband Greg on Mount Desert Island since 1991. Soon after moving, she discovered she had a family history on the island dating back to some of the original settlers. Anne has been an avid birder since 1987 when her brother arrived from Utah with a new obsession to share. Anne is currently working as a school counselor at Tremont Consolidated School where she started a birding club for kids and tries to promote the benefits of finding joy in the outdoors. Other interests include, golf, boating, biking, hiking- anything that takes her outside where the birds are!
Seth Davis grew up in Oregon, where he spent much of his time outdoors in the woods behind his house. Having always had a curiosity about nature and biology, Seth pursued a career in science, and he is now a post-doctoral research associate in the Department of Neuroscience at the University of New England. Seth’s spark for birding came while hiking at a reservoir near his apartment in Colorado and seeing a Mountain Bluebird for the first time. It was at this point that he recognized there was far more to the world of birds than the sparrows and finches that frequented his feeders! Since moving to Maine in 2015, Seth has been active in the birding community, and he currently serves on the Board of Directors at York County Audubon. Seth also eagerly serves as co-coordinator of Maine Young Birders Club, through which he enjoys sharing his love of birds and nature with the young members of Maine’s proud birding community.
Molly DellaRoman studied environmental science in both college and graduate school. She had always been interested in birds since a young age and after taking Cornell's Spring Field Ornithology course in 2004, she has been a very active birder. She has been an organic farmer in MA since 2006 and bought an organic orchard with her partner in 2017 in Brooklin, ME. They have been enjoying birding all over the Blue Hill Peninsula and MDI.
Dotty Holcomb Doherty has recently moved to New Hampshire from Maryland's Chesapeake Bay and is thrilled to be back in her native New England. An ornithology class at Earlham College launched her love of birds and an internship at Manomet cemented it. As a science teacher, journalist, writer, guide, and photographer, Dotty has always made birding part of her life. Eco-travel has taken her all over the world to photograph wildlife which she shares in a daily blog email to over 300 people.
Jonathan Doherty is one of many whose interest in birds started with an ornithology course at Earlham College. He has been birding ever since, still traveling with other Earlhamites to explore the world of birds. Jonathan is retired from a long career leading landscape scale conservation in the six-state Chesapeake Bay watershed, the Columbia River Gorge, and at a number of national parks. He also has a business making fine chocolates!
Bob Duchesne became interested in birds in the first grade. Interest grew to passion and today Bob is one of Maine's top birding experts. He is a board member for Maine Audubon's Penobscot Valley Chapter in the Bangor area. Bob is a frequent tour leader and has led trips from Atlantic Canada to the Florida Everglades. In 2009, Bob completed development of the Maine Birding Trail and has authored a guidebook for the state, published on Down East Books. He currently writes a weekly birding column for the Bangor Daily News. Bob served six terms in the Maine House of Representatives, and now serves on the state Board of Environmental Protection.
Toni Evans divides her time between Brookeville, Maryland and Goose Cove, Maine. She is happiest out of doors and loves every aspect of the natural world. She got hooked on birding at Earlham college where she graduated with a BA in Biology. As a teacher she helped lead student trips to the Peruvian Amazon multiple times. She has traveled throughout the US, Galapagos, Kenya, South Africa, Europe, Panama, and Ireland, bins at the ready. She likes to say that birding is like Christmas morning, there's a gift waiting every time you go out.
Dan Gardoqui is a bird-curious mammal with a playful, engaging affect and over 30 years of studying bird language, wildlife tracking, and nature connection. He is a Certified Wildlife Tracker and Registered Maine Guide, and served as Science Faculty at Granite State College and the University of New Hampshire. Dan was the science & audio editor for What the Robin Knows and is well-known for his uncanny bird mimicry skills and his Learn a Bird series on YouTube. He currently runs Lead with Nature, where he offers nature-based consulting services and educational guide services.
Michael J. Good, MS. Biologist/naturalist, President of Down East Nature Tours in Bar Harbor, Maine and Founder of Warblers and Wildflowers Festival (1998-2007), Acadia Birding Festival (2008-present) and the Penobscot Watershed Eco Center, Bar Harbor. He has over 30 years experience studying the birds of North America and brings a wealth of knowledge about Neotropical migrants and the avifauna of the Eastern United States. Michael has traveled extensively in the US, Alaska, Europe, Australia, South America and Cuba. He is a regional business leader promoting sound ecologically practices in business, government and land development. A Registered Maine Guide, Michael has been guiding professionally for many years through his company Down East Nature Tours focusing on avian ecology in the Gulf of Maine. In his spare time he maintains Three Pines Bird Sanctuary in Town Hill, Maine, studying micro-habitat of Neotropical migratory birds on Mount Desert Island, Maine and winter ecology in various Neotropical countries when given the opportunity.
Julia Hanauer-Milne is a lifelong birder who does not remember a time Before Birds. Her parents fostered that interest with their active feeders and appreciation of the birds who visited in New Jersey, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire. Julia has lived in Maine now for 33 years, currently in Sidney. A teacher and writer, Julia has shared her love of birds with students for the past 25 years through bird walks, projects, and citizen science. A Fund for Teachers fellowship in 2017 allowed her to bird in the Peruvian Amazon and to help her students learn how birds connect Maine with other parts of the world.
Billy Helprin Billy is the Director of the Somes-Meynell Wildlife Sanctuary (right behind Festival Center in Somesville). Before working for the Sanctuary, Billy was the Mt. Desert Island Steward for Maine Coast Heritage Trust, managing Preserve properties and monitoring many conservation easements. He has a Master of Science degree from Utah State University and a Master of Arts in Teaching. Billy has enjoyed leading wildlife explorations and studies in the Rocky Mountain region for Great Plains Wildlife Institute, the Teton Science School, and Abercrombie and Kent; and in Kenya for the School for Field Studies. He has been involved with avian research and inventory projects in Ohio, Maine, Wyoming and Guatemala. Whenever possible, Billy enjoys getting out with friends or on his own to see and hear which bird species are nearby and what they are up to.
Glenn Hodgkins has spent a lifetime observing the natural world in Maine. It wasn't until his daughter started identifying birds as a toddler, however, that he dove into birding. Twenty-four years later, he and his daughter remain passionate about birds and birding. Whenever possible outside of his day job as a research hydrologist, he's out birding locally and regionally in Maine. Glenn volunteered extensively over the last 5 years for the Maine Bird Atlas, in both the breeding and winter parts of the atlas. He also leads local and regional birding tours, mostly for the Augusta Birding Club, and enjoys seeing people get excited about birds. Glenn has also volunteered in recent years for the Finch Research Network, working on recording calls of the different Red Crossbill types.
Zachary Holderby is originally from Washington state. He has a BS in Wildlife Ecology from WSU and an MS in Wildlife Ecology from Texas State University. His masters research involved studying the ecological and reproductive differences between polymorphic Reddish Egrets in coastal Texas. He has done bird survey work in Colorado and SE Arizona, as well as conservation projects involving Sage Grouse in Nevada/Oregon, Blue-Fronted Amazons in Argentina, Blue-Throated Macaws in Bolivia, and Red Squirrels in the Yukon. He was a biologist for NPS in Channel Islands National Park in 2018 doing fox tracking, bird surveys, mouse grids and herp surveys. The last three summers he spent employed as a Maine Bird Atlas and Breeding Bird Survey Technician. Zach is a Maine Registered Guide doing kayak trips out of Stonington Paddle in Stonington, Maine. He loves hiking, photographt, backpacking and getting out and seeing new bird species and learning their different behaviors.
Lee Hoy is a wildlife, landscape, macro, and night sky photographer based out of the Davis Mountains in west Texas. In addition to being the owner of Big Bend Birding & Photo Tours, he also serves as the lead photography workshop instructor for Wildside Nature Tours and is an adventure photography workshop instructor for Precision Camera & Video in Austin and Houston, Texas. He loves to teach workshop participants how to capture outstanding nature images and to blend photography and an amazing experience into one. He speaks at photography and birding festivals around the country and when not traveling loves to enjoy the night sky and wildlife in his own 18 acres of paradise on top of a mountain in west Texas. He is one of seventeen US and Canadian OM System Pro Ambassadors and loves sharing the amazing features and capabilities of the OM System. Finally, he hosts a nature photography podcast “Capturing Nature with Lee Hoy.
Craig Kesselheim is a retired educator and long-time resident of Southwest Harbor. He has birded for 50+ years, launched by a college ornithology course and charismatic teacher. Craig gets around to other hot spots in North America whenever possible, but has been Maine-based for over 30 years.
David Lamon is the Manager of the Fields Pond Audubon Center in Holden, Maine. His background is a mix of environmental conservation, restoration, and education. David has worked as a National Park Service Ranger, teacher, and non-profit conservation professional conducting environmental research and restoration projects with common loons and sea-run fish.
Alex Lamoreaux has been an avid birder and naturalist his entire life. The ubiquitous Red-tailed Hawk was his spark bird and continues to be his favorite bird today! Alex has been a nomadic biologist, working in multiple countries and in dozens of US states for over 15 years before settling into full time bird-guiding as a senior leader and North America specialist for Wildside Nature Tours. Alex's love for nature shines through in his ever-enthusiastic approach to guiding, and he strives to bring the birding community together to conserve and protect wildlife.
Adrian Lesak has been a birder since childhood and fondly recalls the early mornings of spring migration; birding while delivering newspapers until the school bell rang. He has studied forest songbird communities for the US Forest Service in Washington and in Master's and PhD research in Alabama and Wisconsin, respectively. As part of the Eagle Optics sales team for 5 years, then the Vortex team for several years, and now with Zeiss optics, he has gained extensive knowledge and field experience with the latest the sport optics industry has to offer. Adrian enjoys the challenge and reward of pairing birders with the right optics to help them enjoy the pursuit and the passion for birds and birding he shares with them.
Don Lima has been an avid birdwatcher ever since his grandfather first gave him a pair of binoculars at age 8. He pursued his passion of wildlife and the outdoors at the University of Maine, Orono, where he received his B.S. in Wildlife Management in 1986. He soon began a career that has, so far, spanned 32 years with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), which has allowed extensive opportunities to live, travel and bird all over the U.S. Don has conducted restoration projects in grassland and saltmarsh habitats, waterfowl banding for the USFWS and Black Duck Joint Venture, point count surveys, and was an active member of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s, Partners for Wildlife Program. His greatest passion is continuing to share his love of birds, wildlife and being outdoors with his sons.
Kyle Lima is an ecologist and data analyst with Schoodic Institute at Acadia National Park where they work to inspire science, learning, and community for a changing world. His first birding trip in 2012 sparked his love for birds and defined his future career. He obtained a degree in wildlife ecology from the University of Maine Orono, during which he worked on projects related to bird ecology, forestry, phenology, mammal scavenging, and climate and land-use change. These experiences made it clear to Kyle how crucial it is to continue working to connect people back with nature and understand the changing world around us. Kyle is also a hobbyist artist, photographer, rock climber, and woodworker.
Kristen Lindquist is a published poet and freelance natural history writer. She regularly leads bird walks for various nonprofit organizations around the state. She has served as a member of the Maine Bird Records Committee, as a board member of Friends of Maine's Seabird Islands and Merryspring Nature Center, and on the Conservation Commission in her hometown of Camden, ME. She was a contributing writer for the recent book "Birdwatching in Maine: A Site Guide."
James Longo is an ornithologist and birder. Since a young age he has felt at home in the forest and got hooked on birding when he heard his spark bird, a Red-eyed Vireo, singing during a birding field trip. He has been enthusiastically birding by ear ever since. He spent years working on various projects as a field biologist, including studying Black-capped Chickadees, Common Loons, and Florida Scrub-jays. After moving to Maine, he worked as a Breeding Bird Atlas technician for the project's final year. He has a B.S. in Wildlife Science from the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry and is currently a Master's student at the University of Maine studying Bicknell's Thrush breeding habitat.
Kevin Loughlin was raised to appreciate nature while exploring the woodlands of Pennsylvania as a child. At age six, during a family trip through the American West, Kevin became fascinated with photography as well seeing the new and different birds throughout North America. Instilled with a love for travel and seeking new, exciting destinations he felt a desire to share his experiences with others and in 1993 Wildside Nature Tours was founded. Kevin teaches beginning birding and beginning nature photography classes through several adult education venues as well as through seminars and workshops for groups, organizations and schools. Currently the vice president of the Birding Club of Delaware County, Kevin also founded the PA Young Birder’s Club, sharing his love of nature while inspiring kids to get outside.
Nick Lund is on staff at Maine Audubon. He is also a writer, operating on social media as The Birdist, with a regular column for National Audubon and also appearing in Slate, the Washington Post, National Geographic Online, The Guardian, and other outlets. He was born and raised in Maine and lives in Falmouth with his wife and young son.
Becky Marvil lives with her family in Yarmouth, Maine. She has a background in Biology (Earlham College) and in Ornithology and Computer Science (University of Colorado), and runs her own computer programming/webpage design business. She is pleased to be the Executive Director of the Acadia Birding Festival, combining her knowledge of webpage design, organizational skills, and love of birding. She is also the Secretary for the Maine Bird Records Committee, eBird Hotspot monitor for Maine, and on the Board of Maine Audubon. During her free time, she helps with local bird surveys, chases after rarities, and she loves to travel and enjoy birds in new locations.
Brendan McKay gained an early love for birds from his grandmother whose house he visited on Great Diamond Island during his childhood. He studied Marine Biology at the University of Maine in Orono and worked for the Maine Coast Heritage Trust as part of their summer trail crew for three seasons. While working for the Maine Coast Heritage Trust, he gained a further appreciation for birds from the knowledgeable stewards who all shared a passion for the natural world. He discovered eBird in 2014 and has been thrown deeper down the rabbit hole ever since. He currently lives in Portland, ME where he enjoys birding local hotspots and takes pleasure in finding rare birds in unexpected places.
Steve Mierzykowski is a certified wildlife biologist. He received a B.S. in wildlife biology from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1978. After a few seasonal jobs in the Midwest for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, in 1980 he became the wildlife biologist at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point where he worked for ten years. Steve transferred back to USFWS in 1990 where he specialized in environmental contaminants. After a year in the USFWS Rhode Island Field Office, he was assigned to the Maine Field Office in Orono where he has lived for 30 years. Beside conducting scores of contaminant investigations on many species including Bald Eagle, Common Loon, Common Tern, and Piping Plover, Steve also ran several Breeding Bird Survey routes in the North Maine Woods. After a 35-year career, Steve retired from federal service in 2014 and took up birding. He now birds nearly every day and occasionally guides for Land Trusts and other groups.
Greg Miller has been birding for over 50 years.... really before he can even remember. It was his father who got him into birding at an early age and he has birded in all 50 states and much of Canada, always smitten by the birding bug. Every trip out is an adventure! In 1998 Greg zigzagged across the continent–traveling 130,000 miles while trying to hold down a full time job at a nuclear power plant–to try to see as many species of birds in one calendar year as possible. It was an incredible experience passing the 700-species mark—an achievement many birders aspire to in a lifetime. But there was competition. Two other birders, Sandy Komito and Al Levantin also did Big Years the same year and also broke the 700-mark. These three competitive quests are documented in the 2004 non-fiction book, The Big Year, by Mark Obmascik, and later in 2011 made into a movie. Greg had the fortunate opportunity to be the Bird Consultant for the movie. Greg now guides for Wildside Nature Tours.
Lena Moser got hooked on birding as a 13-year-old growing up in rural Connecticut. She went on to study and research birds at both Cornell and Princeton University, and she guided birding tours around the world. Lena lived and worked in Maine for 7 years. During this time, she co-founded the Maine Young Birders Club, helping teen naturalists get outside together. She also served on the Board of Directors at York County Audubon and taught a new, museum-based ornithology course of her own design. Lena lives with her husband and 5-year-old son, Ilya, in glorious New Hampshire, where they go on ample adventures and hikes in the White Mountains. Lena runs her own business as a mindset and mindfulness life coach, helping women with many different passions create a career and lifestyle they love.
Cathy Rees has worked as an ecological consultant in Maine since 2000 inventorying and assessing land use conditions, and providing management recommendations. She has also worked as a gardener and landscaper during this time designing, installing and maintaining plantings. The need to educate others about their native flora, its beauty, mystery and benefit to the ecosystem led her to cofound Native Gardens of Blue Hill.
Jeff Romano Jeff Romano directs public policy at Maine Coast Heritage Trust, where he works with a broad coalition of organizations to promote and support land conservation activities throughout the state. An avid hiker and birdwatcher, Jeff is also an outdoor writer who has authored four guides with Mountaineers Books, including: 100 Classic Hikes of New England (2010), Day Hiking New England (2015), and Hike the Parks Acadia (2021).
Bill Sheehan lives and birds in northern Maine, where he grew up. He is a registered Maine Guide and has been leading trips and guiding birders in the woods and wetlands of Maine for over 25 years. Bill is the president of the Aroostook Birders birding club and has been involved with the Maine Bird Records Committee since its inception. A reviewer for Maine eBird, Bill has a deep interest in the distribution and status of birds in Maine and is currently working with Peter Vickery on a book on this subject. An avid duck-a-phile, Bill loves most scanning his favorite local patches for rare waterfowl and waders. He can be seen observing a Ross's Goose in Limestone, Maine on Google Earth at the coordinates (46.913309, -67.824541).
Emilie Talpin grew up in Chalon sur Saône, France, the birthplace of Nicéphore Niépce and the first photograph. Despite this background, she got into photography very late and in 2018 joined a local camera club where she met a group of talented photographers and was inspired to dive deeper into the art of capturing moments in time. Now, everywhere she goes, it is with her trusted camera by her side. Lately, she has been concentrating on wildlife and macro photography, in particular water drop refraction, but will occasionally stray with friends to an astro or landscape photoshoot. As a French teacher, she is inherently eager to learn and try new material; a practice also applied outside the classroom as she explores the world around her and chases her next photo. Emilie is currently a featured pro on the Olympus website, you can read her articles: https://learnandsupport.getolympus.com/about-emilie-talpin
As an Environmental geologist, Ann Thayer chose a career that allowed her to spend her work-life outdoors where she could observe the natural world around her. Backyard birding and long time association with Audubon fed her curiosity about birds and led to more varied birding in Maine and Florida. More recently, she's honed her birding skills in the varied terrain of Maine, and during expeditions to the American Southwest, the Caribbean, and Central and South America. Ann contributes to the birding and geology units of the Maine Master Naturalist program, and thanks to mentors along the way, she now leads birdwalks in Maine and Florida, where she's just as likely to point out an interesting rock or favorite tree species-though she's happiest when she learns something new along the way.
Terry Towne is a life-long amateur naturalist and USCG Licensed Captain. He used his outdoor enthusiasm and skills as the Regional Steward for Maine Coast Heritage Trust to steward the islands around Mount Desert Island’s bays and offshore on Marshall Island and Long Island Frenchboro (now retired after 20 years at MCHT). After learning how to make a living in Maine more than 30 years ago by commercial fishing and municipal government, he is a graduate of the University of Maine. He has introduced many to the beauty and ruggedness of Maine’s islands through his trail building and public awareness programs.
Peter Trueblood is a bird enthusiast who lives in Oakland, California. He has been coming to the Acadia Bird Festival for MANY years and knows the area very well. He also serves as the President of the Board of the Acadia Bird Festival, a not-for-profit corporation.
Jill Weber is a consulting botanist/ecologist. She received her B.A. in Botany from the University of Northern Colorado and her M.S. in Botany from the University of Maine. Jill has done field botany in Maine since 1988, working for Nature Conservancy, the Maine Department of Conservation, Maine Coast Heritage Trust, Acadia National Park, and many land trusts. She is coauthor of The Plants of Acadia National Park and Sedges of Maine: A Field Guide to the Cyperaceae. She is currently an instructor and herbarium curator at the College of the Atlantic. Plants touch every facet of our lives, from food, to art, economics, and politics. Every plant has a story, and Weber’s passion is to learn as many of them as she can and share her sense of wonder with others.
Magill Weber was born into a family of non-birders, but had the good fortune to grow up down the road from the Wind Point lighthouse, one of the best migrant traps on Lake Michigan. She taught herself to bird in early elementary school via steady supply of field guides gifted by family members in the hopes of avoiding actually having to go birding themselves. Magill has worked as a bird bum on field projects around the country, wrote a masters thesis on the spring stopover ecology of Blackpoll Warblers, and served as a project director for The Nature Conservancy's California migratory birds program. Magill is currently an attorney for a Portland, Maine-based technology company. She sits on the Arizona Bird Records Committee and the American Birding Association board of directors, and has had a number of articles and photos published in national birding publications and field guides. She has birded on five continents and in every US state and Canadian province-the Maine coast is, hands down, her favorite place to bird.
Chuck Whitney is a local educator, who has lived in Hancock County since 1978. When not birding he can be found making Uilleann bagpipes and playing them in Irish music sessions.
Fred Yost started watching birds and enjoying nature as a child while tagging along with his parents, grandparents and the birding clubs they participated in. His interest in birding became more serious during his undergraduate studies at Eastern Connecticut State University where he was exposed to bird banding, birding by ear and tropical biology. Fred has worked for the Fish & Wildlife Service as a fisheries biologist for 18 years. He enjoys sharing birds with birders and non birders, dragonflies, carving, photography and hiking.