Volunteer Spotlight: Terry Hill
By Jennifer Robins
The Amigos de Bolsa Chica is pleased to recognize Terry Hill as a special Amigos Naturalist/Docent. Terry began bird watching after settling in Huntington Beach with John, the love of her life, in 1976. She joined the Amigos de Bolsa Chica in the mid-1980’s and took the Amigos Docent Training Class. She quickly became an experienced birder and taught visitors at the bird station on Amigos’ Public Tours at the Bolsa Chica Wetlands.
Terry worked in a small law office until “retiring” in 2000 so she and John could begin traveling part of each year in their 32-foot motor home. Their travels took them in the summer of 2000 to Glacier National Park and into Canada at Banff National Park, Lake Louise and Jasper National Park for four and a half months. For the next ten years they traveled to Texas, Louisiana, Arkansas, then across to the Colorado Mountains in 2001, Alaska in 2002, Nova Scotia in 2004, Florida, coastal Georgia and South Carolina in winter/spring 2007. They have taken multiple trips to Arizona, Oregon, Wyoming, North Dakota and Utah. “There is so much to see in our country and so many beautiful places!” Terry exclaims. Terry and John make a good married couple: Terry walks through the beautiful surroundings identifying and photographing the birds while John enjoys fishing in the nearby lakes and streams. They both enjoy sharing their love of reading throughout their travels. Terry keeps birding lists on every trip she takes. She has seen a total of 662 “life birds” and has kept 3,478 individual bird lists. She is fortunate that there are online databases for recording birds like eBird. Terry is the definition of “avid birder.”
In local Orange County, Terry is a participant in monthly bird counts. This is vital information to keep track of the health of the bird population. She has been co-leader for the counts at Bolsa Chica Wetlands and Harriet Wieder Regional Park in Huntington Beach with the Bolsa Chica Conservancy since they began counting in 2011. She also helped in updating the Bolsa Chica Wetlands Bird Checklist. She participates in monthly counts at San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary in Irvine, the UCI Marsh across Campus Drive from SJWS and Shipley Nature Center at Central Park in Huntington Beach.Terry volunteered for Sea and Sage Audubon board as Secretary for two years. At the end of each year, Terry has been the leader of a Bird Count for Sea and Sage Audubon’s Christmas Bird Count in Huntington Beach since 1991. Her area includes the Bolsa Chica State Beach from the Tidal Inlet to Warner Avenue, Harriet Wieder Park and all of the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve. She has also participated in the Inland Orange County Bird Count at Modjeska Canyon and South Orange County Count at Arroyo Trabuco Golf Course.
Since her traveling has slowed, she is also able to lead the Amigos Monthly Bird Walk at Bolsa Chica Wetlands. And we are very happy that she finds the time to share her love of birds with the visitors to the wetlands. Join her on a last Saturday at 9:00 am at the south parking lot of the Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve to learn about the local wetlands birds.