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SURVEYING THE BOSTON WALKING CITY TRAIL

Hike. Bird. Count.

The Boston Birding Festival is excited to partner with the WCT to bring greater attention to Boston’s urban green space and advocate for conservation and greater access to parks and nature.

Simply by birding the trail and sharing your observations, you can help create more awareness of important outdoor corridors and encourage greater access to and protection for green space in the city. The data you collect will help shape urban planning decisions, increase and direct conservation efforts toward neighborhoods that have been neglected, and contribute to a better understanding of Boston’s urban ecology.

CITY  COUNSILOr Kendra Lara taking an ensemble selfie on a community WCT hike. (PHOTO COURTESY OF WCT)

About the Trail

The Walking City Trail is a 27-mile hiking path through some of Boston’s parks, urban wilds, gardens, and neighborhoods. The trail connects 17 diverse Boston neighborhoods from the Neponset River Reservation to the Bunker Hill Monument.

Originally imagined by Miles Howard, journalist and hiking guidebook author, the trail has quickly become a local favorite. Guided section hikes along the trail, co-organized with Boston City Councilor Kendra Lara  and Mothers Out Front sparked ideas for how the “WCT” could be expanded to include even more immersive green (and blue) spaces.

Two of the earliest WCT group hikers, Matthew Broude and Jules Murdza stepped up as fellow trail builders. In 2023, the Walking City Trail route was finalized.

Learn more about the Walking City Trail at https://www.bostontrails.org

HOW TO GET INVOLVED

There are several ways to participate

1. If you are a beginner birder, join one of the BBF’s organized Walking City Trail Bird Walks. We’ll post the schedule with target trail segments here soon. 

2. Join one of the WCT’s walks and bird while hiking, then send us your list. You must also register in advance for a WCT walk.

4. Lead your own walk with your own group or bird club, family, class, book club, scout troop, church group, office, etc., and share your list with us (info below). If you need assistance, we can usually find a volunteer for you. 

3. Walk a section of the trail on your own or with friends and share your observations with us. You can use our spreadsheet (sign up here first and we’ll send you a link) or you can email us a spreadsheet of your own and we’ll combine your data with the group data. If you can also share photos, that would be fantastic. Email reports to  hello@bostonbirdingfestival.org and put WCT in the subject line. Thank you.

5.  Volunteer to lead a bird walk yourself along a segment of the train, or to be one of this project’s administrators.

Please sign up to be part of the project and receive updates. Using community data, WCT is planning to publish a checklist sometime in 2026. Thank you!

Useful links

Want tips on being a good surveyor? We’ve got you covered. (PS, yes, please report dead birds!)

Did you complete a walk and use your own checklist? You can still share your data. Submit this form with your checklist to add your data to the project.

Are you an eBird user? Share your list with BosBirdFest and we’ll compile it. 

Want to get email updates on this project’s progress? Or assist in organizing this project? Sign up for email. 

Thank you!

Register for details and to be notified of scheduled walks in advance

We’ll send you an email confirmation with more details and let you know in advance when the next walk is scheduled in your area. Thank you!

WANT TO SPONSOR A WALK?

Is your business or organization interested in sponsoring a WCT survey walk? Your gift helps us play for trip leaders who provide education! Thank you. Please email us for details! Thanks!

SURVEY THE WALKING CITY TRAIL

ABOUT THE TRAIL

The Walking City Trail is a 27-mile hiking path through some of Boston’s parks, urban wilds, gardens, and neighborhoods. The trail connects 17 diverse Boston neighborhoods from the Neponset River Reservation to Bunker Hill Monument.

The Boston Birding Festival is excited to partner with the WCT to bring attention to Boston’s urban ecology and equitable access to green space. By birding the trail and sharing your observations, you can help create more awareness of these resources and encourage greater access to and protection of green space in the city. The data you collect will help shape urban planning decisions, increase and direct conservation efforts in neighborhoods that have been neglected, and contribute to a better understanding of Boston’s urban ecology.

Learn more about the Walking City Trail at https://www.bostontrails.org

Please review the information on liability in advance of registering for this event. All participants are responsible for themselves.

#BIRDWALKS #CITIZENSCIENCE #COMMUNITY

HOW TO GET INVOLVED

There are several ways to get involved. But first, be sure to register to be part of the project and receive updates.

1. Walk a section of the trail yourself or with friends and share your observations with us. You can use our spreadsheet (register first) or you can email us a spreadsheet of your own. If you can also share photos, that would be fantastic. Thank you.

2. Join one of the BBF’s organized Walking City Trail Bird Walks. We’ll post the schedule and trail segment soon. Be sure to register in advance and you’ll get it by email.

3. Join one of the WCT’s walks and bird while hiking, then send us your list.

4. Form your own group with your bird club, class, book club, scout troop, office, etc., and share your list with us.

5.  Volunteer to lead a bird walk yourself along a segment of the train, or to be one of this project’s administrators.

Using your data, WCT is planning to publish a checklist sometime in 2025. 

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