Fall color at The Nature Conservancy's Bear Rocks Preserve in West Virginia.
Bear Rocks Fall color at The Nature Conservancy's Bear Rocks Preserve in West Virginia. © Kent Mason

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Community-college science professor and bird-watcher, Malinda Chapman, in the Adirondacks of New York.
Hands holding a plant: Community-college science professor and bird-watcher, Malinda Chapman, in the Adirondacks of New York. © Ian Shive
ALL INTERNAL RIGHTS, LIMITED EXTERNAL RIGHTS. December 2013. The Mad Island Marsh Preserve protects 7,063 acres, including rare tallgrass coastal prairies. Every winter, birders flock to preserves and parks to tally species and take part in the Christmas Bird Count, a friendly competition that pits teams from across the contitent against each other. For five years, the team at The Nature Conservancy's Mad Island Marsh Preserve has come out ahead. Photo credit: © Karine Aigner
Mad Island Marsh ALL INTERNAL RIGHTS, LIMITED EXTERNAL RIGHTS. December 2013. The Mad Island Marsh Preserve protects 7,063 acres, including rare tallgrass coastal prairies. Every winter, birders flock to preserves and parks to tally species and take part in the Christmas Bird Count, a friendly competition that pits teams from across the contitent against each other. For five years, the team at The Nature Conservancy's Mad Island Marsh Preserve has come out ahead. Photo credit: © Karine Aigner © Karine Aigner