With the 2020 Bluebird Season wrapping up, we’d like to start highlighting key players in making the magic happen!
This week Val Bogumill is in the Bluebird Spotlight!
Val has been an instrumental part of Bluebird Experience for the past 3 years. She is a jack of all trades that is goal oriented and can rally up a team to accomplish anything with her.
Bluebird Experience: Tell us a little about yourself:
Val: My name is Valerie. I have been with Bluebird Experience for going on 3 years now. I am a wife and a mom of one daughter (2-any day now)!
BE: What do you do for Bluebird Experience?
Val: My role with Bluebird Experience is mostly “behind the screen”. Account Manager/Database/Website Design & Function. Manage all the social media pages, maintain the web page and get all the lovely writing and pictures our team puts together out on the web for you all to enjoy :)
BE: How’d you get involved with bluebird experience?
Val: I came into Shelly’s life originally to help her out around the house, cooking meals & running errands for her. With all the time spent together I would hear a lot about Bluebird Experience, lots of students in and out helping with projects related to the nonprofit. Slowly over the years Bluebird Experience has become the main focus of my work with Shelly and it is her passion and especially her STORY that makes participating in keeping a nonprofit like Bluebird Experience afloat so inspiring. ((If you don’t know the story about how Shelly came to love bluebirds and do ALL her and the people she has inspired per the years to help make Bluebird Experience what it is today, check it out on our webpage!))
BE: What has being a part of Bluebird Experience taught you?
Val: No idea is too big. I didn’t really have an interest in birds at all before I met Shelly. But listening to her passion for bluebird restoration and learning about the history she has made in the community with restoring songbirds over the years and engaging ALL age groups in making a difference over the years-how could one not want to be a part of that? Her energy and passion is contagious.
BE: What’s your favorite bluebird memory?
Val: Taking my daughter for the first time (for myself and my daughter) to our first bluebird trail at Eastside Hill Cemetery and Shelly showing us HOW TO bluebird. Checking nest boxes, recording data-I wouldn’t ever have a clue how much goes into prepping for bluebird season, then managing bluebird season and finally cleaning up after a season and prepping for the next again!
Now 3 years later, it has become a special bonding thing my daughter and her grandma do together each time we go out to visit Grandma’s bluebird box.
BE: What advice would you give a new birder?
Val: Don’t be afraid! It doesn’t HAVE TO be a huge commitment. Whether you want to become bluebird appreciator-give them a home just to watch them while you sip your morning coffee
bluebird maintainer- put up some nestboxes, check them from time to time, practice identifying nests and birds and taking notes for yourself
citizen scientist- put up nestboxes and actively monitor every single week, utilizing Nestwatch.org, RECORD what you find each week and keep all data throughout the season updated on Nestwatch.org
All play a part in helping to restore the bluebirds. Providing a nestbox or multiple nestboxes alone is a positive way to play a role in bluebird restoration. Just remember, no matter what level of birder you choose to be, CLEAN OUT YOUR NESTBOXES at the end of every season so it’s ready for the next :)
BE: What’s your go to birding song?
Val: Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah, duh :)
BE: Has Shelly roped you into singing Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah yet?
Val: Yes. I don’t think anyone gets out of that one.
Thank you to Val for all she does!