Tim Nolan: For Birds and Passion, A Sanctuary In the Highlands

Timothy Nolan usually writes about travel, golf, and traveling in order to play golf.

Suzie Gilbert and one of her charges, a temporarily docile red-tailed hawk. Photo: John Huba

Suzie Gilbert and one of her charges, a temporarily docile red-tailed hawk. Photo: John Huba

The hills and clefts of the Hudson Highlands—defined roughly by the Bear Mountain and Newburgh-Beacon Bridges—are a tangle of moss-stained boulders, mountain laurel, hemlock stands and small streams bound for the big river. They make good stomping grounds for mild eccentrics, full-blown eccentrics, and those who simply need the room to go their own way.

Suzie Gilbert fits into the last category. Her home is, not surprisingly, a little off the beaten path, at the end of a long, unmarked driveway, paved only with mud in this cold, rainy, reluctant April that has passed for spring. We were going to talk about rehabilitating wild birds, songbirds to hawks, as well as her book, “Flyaway: How a Bird Rehabber Sought Adventure and Found Her Wings.” Upon greeting me she was, for lack of a better word, asymmetrical. Her sweatshirt, bearing the single word “Garrison”, was sticking out a lot further on the first syllable than on the last two. A little disoriented, I just missed sitting on a kitchen chair decorated with a large berry. Grateful for evading the berry, I decided to keep my peace about the other matter. I was glad, though, when Zack, a yellow-collared macaw, balanced things out by exiting Suzie’s sweatshirt. Read more…

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1 Response to Tim Nolan: For Birds and Passion, A Sanctuary In the Highlands

  1. Suzi is a local treasure here in the Hudson Highlands. Thanks for the article Tim!

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