Even birds will eat junk food.

Eugenio Garcia, a rising senior at Common Ground High School, waters a tree planted last year in the urban oasis in Edgewood Park. Garcia and other summer interns will work to maintain the oasis this summer. (Anna Bisaro - New Haven Register)

Eugenio Garcia, a rising senior at Common Ground High School, waters a tree planted last year in the urban oasis in Edgewood Park. Garcia and other summer interns will work to maintain the oasis this summer. (Anna Bisaro – New Haven Register)

And that’s one of the reasons volunteers will work this summer to remove invasive species from designated bird habitats in the city. Invasive plants that grow in bird habitats are not the best food for migratory species passing through New Haven’s developed and urban environment, and native plants provide better homes and nesting materials.

“Yes, it’s still food, but it’s not the best food,” said Colleen Murphy-Dunning, director of the Urban Resources Initiative in New Haven

For the next five weeks, [paid] interns from Common Ground High School will work at 10 different urban oases in the city to help remove invasive plants and replace them with native ones. The internship program began Wednesday in Edgewood Park.

“They experience stewardship alongside volunteers doing this because they care about it,”Murphy-Dunning said. “It’s great for the parks, for people, and the birds.”

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Common Ground’s note: This summer’s URI Greenspace Crew consists of: Joaquin, Eugenio, Erik, Yaritza, Kathiana and Tyrese, and is co-led by CG Alum Malik Joyner.