We are happy to announce that Ramiro Aragon has agreed to be an LCAS Board member. He has attended Board meetings, co-led our Latino Outreach programs, assisted with bird walks for more than two years, and recently graduated from OSU with a Master’s of Natural Resources. He is also a dedicated advocate for birds and wildlife and teaching people to enjoy the experience of the natural world. We appreciate the time and talents he brings to Lane Audubon.
Ramiro is but one shining example of our dedicated volunteers. Building our core group of volunteers is our most powerful means for reaching out to the community and engaging the public with our goals of education and conservation.
Did you know that the higher the threat level, the more “dees” chickadees add to their alarm call? A red-tailed hawk, not much of a threat to chickadees, will elicit a relatively short alarm call but the presence of a Northern Pygmy-Owl (which specializes in hunting small birds) will bring forth a long alarm call, with as many as 12 “dees” strung together.
Between the new administration and this year’s Congress, many of our country’s environmental regulations are under threat. For example: The Clean Water Act and the Clean Power Plan are being eroded. No more must federal officials consider climate change impacts when making decisions.
Lane County Audubon Society hosts this annual fall swift event outside Agate Hall. Thousands of Vaux’s Swifts use Agate Hall’s big chimney to roost for the night as they gather prior to migration.
Last year the birds moved through in a big group early in the month, before we could celebrate their journey. This spring we were more fortunate. We were able to enjoy watching 2,500 birds disappear down the chimney the night of our swift event. So we may see several thousand birds entering the chimney, but there is no guarantee!
It is fun to observe the swifts before they fly off to Central and South America for the winter. Lane Audubon will provide handouts with information about the Vaux’s Swifts.
This Saturday’s Bird Walk will start at the Royal Avenue part of the Fern Ridge Wildlife Area. Local birder John Sullivan will be our leader. We will rendezvous at the parking lot at the end of Royal Avenue about 8:30.
In 2015, bird nerd Noah Strycker of Oregon became the first human to see more than half of the planet’s bird species in a single, yearlong, round-the-world birding trip. Anything could have happened, and a lot did. He was scourged by blood-sucking leeches, suffered fevers and sleep deprivation, survived airline snafus, car breakdowns, mudslides and torrential floods, skirted war zones, and had the time of his life. Birding on seven continents and carrying only a pack on his back, Noah enlisted the enthusiastic support of local birders to tick off more than 6,000 species, including Adelie Penguins in Antarctica, a Harpy Eagle in Brazil, a Spoon-billed Sandpiper in Thailand, and a Green-breasted Pitta in Uganda. He shared the adventure in real time on his daily blog (audubon.org/noah), and now he reveals the inside story in talks and slide shows. This humorous and inspiring presentation about Noah’s epic World Big Year will leave you with a new appreciation for the birds and birders of the world.
Audubon in the Schools Program Coordinator
The Audubon in the Schools (AITS) curriculum comprises five fun-filled lessons that combine bird biology and basic art techniques. Originally developed by artist Kris Kirkeby, our former Education Chair, the lessons are excellent examples of participatory education. The program is designed to provide elementary students with a solid introduction to core aspects of bird biology, including feather anatomy and function, bird identification techniques, bird field marks, and habitat. The coordinator oversees all facets of the program. This includes classroom scheduling and volunteer training, plus teaching lessons to students along with the other volunteers. Help us take this wonderful education program to new heights!
FMI: Visit our Volunteer page online at laneaudubon.org/support/volunteer, or contact Maeve Sowles at 541.343.8664, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Compiler wanted for Florence Christmas Bird Count
The Florence Christmas Bird Count (CBC) has been an annual December event for 34 years. The data from that count, which averages about 130 species, provides local birders and counters an invigorating early winter challenge away from the preparations for the holidays. The Florence count folds into the greater LCAS CBC.
Kit Larsen has been organizing the count for the last 10 years and is ready to pass this task on to someone else. It involves lining up participants, producing packet materials, collecting and compiling the data, submitting to Audubon, and summarizing the count for newsletters. It takes some organization and attention to the calendar. It is a good way of getting to know the Florence area, connect to a local facet of an international project, and become better acquainted with the birds and birders in the Florence area.
FMI: Please contact Kit at email@example.com or 541.344.9574.
School is out for the summer, but that’s a temporary situation. The Audubon in the Schools program sends teams of volunteer instructors into the elementary schools to teach third-, fourth-, and fifth-grade students both science and art using bird specimens, feathers, bones, and nests. No teaching experience or artistic talent is required. All you need is a few hours a month and an interest in teaching children. You can check out the program by sitting in on a class.
For more information, contact Caryn Stoess, Audubon in the Schools Coordinator, at 541.357.8739 or AITSEugene@gmail.com.
For other ways to help, check out our volunteer page online at laneaudubon.org/support/volunteer.
Takeaways from our March Program on Birds and Bugs
- Drinking shade grown/organic coffee helps improve habitat for migratory birds
- Eating organic bananas and other tropical fruit supports the production of organic produce in the U.S.
- Keeping cats indoors will save the lives of billions of birds and mammals every year in the U.S.