News Archive

Thank you

To Bryan Ribelin for providing his artwork for our “Thank You” post cards. His line drawing of a Killdeer provides a lovely artistic image that we will use as an acknowledgement for our member donations.

To Dick Lamster, who presented a bird box talk at the BOGS (Birds of Oregon and General Science) group on November 2. Sixty-three people attended! Dick also presented a backyard bird talk to the Junction City Garden Club on November 7.

To the Darkhorse Band from Salem Oregon (facebook.com/Darkhorsesalem/?fref=mentions), who organized a fundraiser with profits targeted to wildfire relief for animals affected during the summer fire season. Darkhorse, along with Viking Braggot Company (drinkviking.com), raised $308 dollars during a Eugene concert on October 21st. Lane Audubon is matching the donation and dividing the gift between Chintimini Wildlife Center in Corvallis and Cascades Raptor Center, both of whom receive injured animals from our Lane County area. We also want to thank our volunteers who attended the event, Hilary Dearborn and Rachael Friese.

To Jim and Charlotte Maloney, who have been organizing the Third Saturday bird walks since summer of 2013. We want to thank Jim and Charlotte for their time and effort planning and organizing the bird walks, welcoming people in attendance, teaching and helping attendees, and creating a fun, enjoyable experience for all. While they still plan to participate, they are ready to pass on the organizational responsibilities. They recently recruited a new volunteer to head this event, Rebecca Waterman, who has been enjoying the walks for several years. We are happy to welcome and also thank Rebecca for taking on the fun challenge of the Third Saturday bird walks. We look forward to working with you!

Lane County Plans to Resume Roadside Spray of Herbicides Immediately

Since 2008, Lane County has maintained roadways mechanically without the use of chemicals that may harm the health of people and wildlife. Some problem areas were identified and a task force recommended allowing limited use of roadside spray.  Recently the county announced that it would resume roadside spray along 400 miles of guardrails. They did not respond to requests for information about how they identified or prioritized areas in need of spray despite the fact that the task force clearly stated “All decision making and process development will be transparent to the public and guided by human and environmental health considerations.”

Further, a public works representative agreed with concerns about toxic run-off during the rainy season and indicated they would not spray at this time.  Yet, road signs indicate that the herbicide application will proceed NOW.

Please contact the county administrator and ask that they stop the herbicide spray plan immediately until a public hearing can be arranged. We need more information and a chance for public input.

Steve Mokrohisky, County Administrator
CountyAdministrator@co.lane.or.us

Phone (541) 682-4203

From Our Treasurer: Simple Pleasures

Talking with a longtime friend on a warm evening in early September, I discovered he had never seen the Vaux’s Swifts entering the chimney at the Old Condon School near Hayward Field on the University of Oregon campus. The building with the chimney is now called Agate Hall. If you haven’t yet seen the swifts descending into the chimney to roost each evening for a couple of weeks in September and again in April as they migrate through, be sure to put it on your bucket list of birding events. See next April’s Quail for details on Lane County Audubon’s “gatherings” celebrating their spring migration.

The next day, my friend, his wife, and I headed to the chimney, and happened upon a couple of other Audubon folks there doing “citizen science,” counting the number of swifts entering their temporary roost as they migrated south in the fall. There were also a few neighborhood residents who had dropped by to witness the spectacle. It was near sunset, and our small group of observers enjoyed an easy conviviality, sharing our enthusiasm and wonder.

The swifts didn’t disappoint. They began circling right before sunset and gradually increased in numbers until they filled the sky, circling the chimney like a tornado, getting ready to retire for the night.

Welcome New LCAS Board Member, Rachael Friese

We want to welcome Rachael Friese to the Lane Audubon Board! Rachael has been involved with our organization as the Audubon Adventures coordinator since spring of 2016. She is excited about birding and cares deeply about the value of environmental education for her children and all children.

Rachael’s Self-introduction
Hello! I’m Rachael Friese and when I’m not too busy being a wife and mom, I’m also the Audubon Adventures coordinator for LCAS. I’m happy to join the board and continue my efforts to protect birds through education and conservation. My interest in birds was sparked by a pair of Western Screech Owls only four years ago and I haven’t put my binoculars down since!

Thanks and Farewell to Caryn Stoess

We want to thank Caryn Stoess for her service on the Lane Audubon Board since January of 2015. She took on the Audubon in the Schools program, one of our important educational activities. Caryn has been a great asset as well as a fun companion on our bird walks and other events. Her enthusiasm for birding and learning will be missed. Caryn has moved to Corvallis for a new job and will continue her birding adventures up the valley. Best of luck and thank you Caryn—we will miss you!

From Our President: Savoring an Autumn Sunset

One corner of our land, on the far northeast slope, is tucked under the overhanging branches of the big firs. It is a peaceful hill where we have buried our pets, and where the previous owner had buried his old dog. My husband has made grave markers for each of them. I have many memories here. In the spring, this corner has the first Red Currant blossoms and a spreading patch of fragrant Lady-slipper Orchids. A patch of Pacific Hounds-tongue blue flowers lights up the area when they bloom. It is the spot where one of our dogs cornered a porcupine against the fence, giving us a chance to see the little animal at close range, before we helped it find an opening to get away. Here we have seen bobcat and coyote scat along a deer trail that continues over the old fence into the woods to the north.

Rachel Carson Award Winners

Our LCAS president, Maeve Sowles, and our conservation chair, Debbie Schlenoff, along with Louise Shimmel of Cascades Raptor Center, are soon to be honored for receiving the Rachel Carson Award. This award highlights efforts to reduce and eliminate pesticides in ways that protect community and environmental health.

The three women worked as a team and partnered with NCAP, publishing an op-ed piece about Rozol and other rodenticides.

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.

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