Monday, March 9- The Importance of The Bahamas to North American Shorebirds, Matt Jeffery, Deputy Director. International Alliances Program, National Audubon Society with collaborators Walker Golder, Audubon North Carolina and Predensa Moore, the Bahamas National Trust Many North American shorebirds make extraordinary migrations from beding areas in the middle and northern latitudes to southern wintering areas. These long distance migrations are energetically expensive and shorebirds often arrive at stopover or wintering sites with depleted fat reserves and in need of high quality food and foraging habitat. During the past 4 years, the National Audubon Society, Bahamas National Trust, and other partner organizations have identified sites across The Bahamas that support significant concentrations of shorebirds during migration and winter including large concentrations of the endangered piping plover. This work has added important new information to our understanding of the importance of The Bahamas to non-breeding shorebirds. This information is very important to developing and implementing successful conservation strategies.
Matt has been with Audubon since 2006 when he came on board to support Audubon’s Education and International Alliances work. He was quickly promoted into a management role for Audubon’s international conservation programs, working with a number of countries, including Mexico, Panama, Belize, Bahamas, Argentina and Paraguay. Matt is especially focused on protecting Important Bird Areas in Latin America and the Caribbean for Neotropical migrant bird populations. As the stepson of an animal keeper in the UK, Matt worked with animals since he was a boy. His more than 15 years of international conservation experience includes several years in Southeast Asia where his commitment to conservation took shape while he was living and working in Thailand and Cambodia. While there he helped advance a variety of conservation projects including the establishment of a 1 million acre forest reserve in the Cardamom Mountains, with Conservation International. Matt has his BSc. Degree from Kings College, University of London.
Chapter Meetings are held the second Monday of the indicated months in the 2nd floor Community Room, LCNB building, 30 Park Place West at 7:30 PM in uptown Oxford unless otherwise noted (n.b). All meetings are open to the public.
The Miami University Natural Areas encompass over one thousand acres and seventeen miles of hiking trails, forming a green crescent around the east side of the City of Oxford. The well-maintained trails will allow for a pleasant winter walk led by Natural Areas Field Manager Jim Reid. Information about the Natural Areas, including a link to a downloadable map, is available at http://miamioh.edu/student-life/natural-areas/trails/index.html. The walk will start at 9:30 a.m. at the parking area for the DeWitt Log Cabin, just off of SR73 east of Oxford, and will conclude around noon. Bring binoculars if possible, plus snacks if desired.
The Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden is currently reestablishing a wetland on a farm in Warren County. Donated to the Zoo, this property, historically a wet place on the landscape is now being reestablished as a 25 acre wetland through grants and volunteer labor. You will see how the zoo is using its growing facilities to produce plants for this project. Within the last year, over 125 species have been found on the property including bald eagle, sand hill cranes, and nesting blue grosbeaks.
Brian F. Jorg, Manager of Native Plant Program at the Cincinnati Zoo & Botanical Garden, joined the organization in 2004. Prior to joining the Zoo, Brian was a horticulturist at Spring Grove Cemetery and Arboretum, a national historic landmark, for 15 years. His responsibilities include managing the Native Plant Program that includes the conservation, education, and promotion of native flora. Finding more efficient ways of propagation and cultivation are a prime goal of this program and these protocols can be used on rare and endangered plants in conservation efforts. Brian also manages the tulip display, in which over 100,000 bulbs are planted seasonally. Brian’s passion is outdoor photography and his photographs have been published in various books, magazines, field guides, calendars, advertisements and greeting cards. Numerous institutions use Brian’s images in their educational displays. Brian leads trips all over the world and in April 2015 he will lead a 14 day wildlife expedition to Argentina and Brazil including Buenos Aires and Iguazu Falls.
Cincinnati’s Spring Grove Cemetery, dating back to 1844, boasts an amazing collection of architecture, sculpture, and horticulture. The Cemetery encompasses 733 acres and over 44 miles of winding roads, making it is the second largest cemetery in the United States. A National Historic Landmark, Spring Grove is the final resting place of many of Cincinnati’s most notable figures. Because of the mature conifers and other diverse botanical specimens found in the Cemetery, it is one of the best sites in our area for winter specialties such as Red-breasted Nuthatch, Pine Siskin, Purple Finch, White-winged Crossbill and Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. A map of the Cemetery grounds can be found at http://www.springgrove.org/uploads/docs/SG_Map2012.pdf. This trip will be led by experienced Cincinnati birder Steve Bobonick. The group will leave at 7:30 a.m. from the TJ Maxx parking lot (on Locust Street across from McDonald’s) and return to Oxford in the afternoon. Pack a lunch and bring binoculars if possible.
Saturday, December 13, 2014: Brookville Lake:
Dr. David Russell will again lead us on a birding tour of the Brookville Reservoir area between Liberty and Brookville, Indiana. We’ll visit a number of good spots around Brookville Lake as well as Whitewater State Park, looking for migrating ducks, geese, gulls, terns, sandhill cranes and other species. A map of the area can be found at http://www.in.gov/dnr/parklake/files/brookvilletrail.pdf. The group will meet at 7:30 a.m. at the west end of the Wal Mart parking lot (on US 27, north of Oxford). Pack a lunch and bring binoculars if possible. We’ll return to Oxford in the afternoon.
Monday, December 8- Ohio Lights Out: Using Monitoring Program Data to Save Migrating Birds, Amanda Duren, Ohio Bird Conservation Initiative
Every spring and fall, millions of birds migrate through Ohio on their way to or from their breeding grounds. Many birds migrate at night, and lights on tall buildings or aimed at the sky can cause birds to strike windows or circle buildings until they fall from exhaustion. Lights Out programs reduce these risks by encouraging building owners and tenants to limit lighting during migration. In this presentation, we will discuss the results of a monitoring program for bird collisions in downtown Columbus, and how these results are guiding the implementation of the new statewide Ohio Lights Out initiative.
Amanda Duren received a B.S. in Environmental Resource Management from Penn State University in 2007 and a M.S. in Wildlife Ecology from the University of Delaware in 2011. For her graduate work, she studied the impacts of non-native plants on bird populations in suburban forest fragments. Amanda currently works as the Program Coordinator for the Ohio Bird Conservation Initiative. The duties of this position include the development of partnership projects among public and private conservation organizations and the coordination of avian education activities in Ohio. Amanda also enjoys exploring Ohio’s nature beauty through birding and kayaking.
Audubon Miami Valley has some great activities on December’s calendar!