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For the Birds

Mar 30, 2022

Even the sparrows have built a nest, and the swallows have their own home; they keep their young near your altars, Lord Almighty, my king and my God. —Psalm 84:3

A lot of building goes on in Scouts BSA—cars for the pinewood derby, the character of young people, and, at Troop 431, birdhouses.

The scouts completed many steps to earn their bird study merit badge. They began with foundational learning, the building blocks of ornithology—the role birds play in an ecosystem and why they’re useful indicators of the quality of the environment; the anatomy of a bird; how to use binoculars, spotting scopes, and field guides; where birds live and what they eat.

If you don’t know the difference between the terms “extinct”, “endangered”, and “threatened”, just ask a scout with a bird study merit badge, because they’ll be able to tell you.

There was practical learning, too. Before that merit badge was awarded to the scouts in Troop 431, they applied their new knowledge on camping trips and adventures. They identified twenty different birds and learned their preferred environment, feeding habits, and migration habits. There was a listening component, as well, when the scouts identified five bird species by song or call.

The three acres that makes up Saint Peter’s grounds has woods and open space that attract different species of birds. The newest enticement for wildlife, courtesy of Troop 431, is a pair of bird houses, a nesting platform, and a suet feeder. The troop certainly accomplished its goal of adding to the beauty of the church’s property and helping to create a sanctuary for birds and other wildlife.

Saint Peter’s is proud of our long association with Troop 431 of Scouts BSA ( We hope you’ll keep an eye out when you visit the church. If you’re lucky, you might just spy a flock of red-neckerchiefed scouts!

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