Tom Brewster: Maker of Nest Boxes for Birds

Tom Brewster donated endless hours to make over 100 bird boxes for students of IAE partner schools who are part of the Ever Green Riparian Stewards Program. IAE is ever grateful to Tom for his amazing contributions to our Ecological Education Program and to the lives of young people and their teachers.image_mini

Tom Brewster, from McMinnville, is helping conservation and our feathered friends one bird box at a time. He recently made over a hundred bird nest box kits which students at IAE partner schools Cheldelin, Muddy Creek, Kings Valley and Corvallis Waldorf were delighted to put together.

These schools are part of the Ever Green Riparian Stewards program in which students conduct watershed and riparian study and restoration on Greenbelt Land Trust managed land south of Philomath and on Benton County managed Jackson-Frazier Wetlands.

Students received in-class lessons about cavity nesting birds before constructing bluebird, swallow, kestrel and wren nest boxes. They were then joined in the field by Tom Brewster and staff from IAE, Marys River Watershed Council, Greenbelt Land Trust, and Benton Soil and Water Conservation District.

Tom talked with students about the significant decline in cavity nesting bird species due in large part to the disappearance of dead trees in which these birds can nest.

“It is important for people young and old to realize that we are losing these precious cavity nesting bird species and that we can help their plight by putting up nest boxes, especially in rural areas where there is ample food supplies,” explained Tom. “Ultimately we have to keep life in balance on this planet. We are seeing an increase in species extinction rates and humans are connected to these species and regulated by the same natural processes.”

Tom showed students how to place their boxes at the correct height and direction in the field. “I enjoyed constructing my own bluebird box and putting it up where they might nest and raise a family,” commented one of the students.

Tom began constructing bird boxes out of recycled wood 12 years ago as a fundraiser for the local armature soft ball team. He currently volunteers with Yamhill Soil and Water Conservation District where he makes kestrel and other bird boxes to be placed on nearby farmland.

IAE honors Tom Brewster for the many hours and labor he has shared with students and our community and for providing homes for hundreds of pairs of birds. For more information contact: Yamhill Soil and Water Conservation District at: 503-472-1474, www.yamhill.swcd.org

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