Flocking to Storrs: A Birder’s Tour of Campus

Horsebarn Hill. (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)
Ornithologist Margaret Rubega, associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, says 'birds are everywhere.' (Peter Morenus/UConn Photo)

Hardcore birders like to get out into the world early, which is how the UConn Magazine’s art director and I found ourselves meeting associate professor Margaret Rubega for the first of a series of campus bird walks at precisely 6 a.m. at a Storrs Center café.

All three of us clutching extra-large coffees, we stepped into the parking lot at 6:06 just as a magnificent red-tailed hawk swooped over street and sidewalk some 10 yards across the parking lot and at eye level – as if on cue.

“That’s amazing,” I said. To which Rubega replied, “No it’s not. Birds are everywhere.”