SAS February 2011 Newsletter - Sacajawea Audubon

sacajaweaaudubon.org

SAS February 2011 Newsletter - Sacajawea Audubon

S A C A J A W E A A U D U B O N S O C I E T YSacajaweaAudubonNewsSacajawea Audubon builds on an interest in birds to promote the conservation of our naturalenvironment through enjoyment, education and action.February 2011Calendar at a GlanceFebruary 14th Sacajawea Audubon Society MeetingMarch 26th Montana Audubon Freezeout Lake TourApril 25th-May 2nd Montana Audubon South Texas Birding TourJune 3rd-5th Montana Audubon Bird Festival"Request for Used Field Gear For African Wildlife Studies"Matthew Becker, Project Director of the Zambian CarnivoreProgramme and alumnus of many Audubon camps andactivities, would love to receive from our group any oldbinoculars, headlamps, and work/hiking shoes for use by thenative Zambian research workers. If you want to donate,contact Mike Becker in Harrison at (406) 685-3632 for questionsand pick-up. Thanks!!Cooperative Conservation in theMadison WatershedSacajawea Audubon Society MeetingFebruary 14, 2011, at 7:00 pmDownstairs Community RoomFirst Security Bank South 19th670 South 19th Street, BozemanMadison Watershed Coordinator Sunni Heikes-Knaptonwill discuss the Madison Watershed Partnership that hasdeveloped a cooperative approach to resource andconservation concerns for the Madison River watershed.She will discuss the background of the partnership,current activities, accomplishments to date, and the goalsfor the future. Her presentation will cover theparticipating organizations: Madison ConservationDistrict, formed in 1946; Madison Valley RanchlandsGroup, founded in 1996; and the Madison RiverFoundation, established in 2003.Heikes-Knapton began working as the first WatershedCoordinator for the Madison River in June 2009. Sheearned her bachelor's degree in biology and master'sdegree in land rehabilitation at Montana State Universityin Bozeman.Originally from South Dakota, she has been in Montanasince 1993. Her office is in Ennis, where she currentlylives with her husband and two children.Birding with John James AudubonJohn James Audubon spent the summer of 1843 at FortUnion on the Missouri River, near the mouth of theYellowstone River. He and members of his party oftencrossed the Missouri to hunt and explore in what becamethe territory and later state of Montana.Audubon traveled overland from the Missouri Rivertwenty miles up the Yellowstone on July 15th, and hereturned to Fort Union the next day. Westbound, hisparty saw a Grouse, shot a Red-winged Starling, andheard a Short-billed Marsh Wren. That evening Auduboncaught four catfish using the Red-wing as bait. The nextday, eastbound, the party saw seven or eight Grouse, aSand-hill Crane, and "several parcels of Ducks." A latersearch for "Cocks of the Plain"—Sage Grouse—along theYellowstone found none.Among the species seen west of the Missouri River thatsummer were the White-headed Eagle, Red-cheekedWoodpecker, Sharp-tailed Grouse, Sand-hill Crane, BluewingedTeal, Green-wing Teal, Black Tern, PeregrineFalcon, Cliff Swallow, Plover, Dove, Curlew, Raven,Magpie, and Ducks. Audubon saw "a fine large Hawk…with the whole head white" that he concluded was aspecies not yet described.Finding the species Audubon listed in 1843 could be anadventure today!Anne MillbrookeSAS PresidentSAS Newsletter February 2011 1


S A C A J A W E A A U D U B O N S O C I E T YChristmas Bird Count Summary for 2010Once again, abig thank youto all theparticipantswho helped!with thisyear’s Christmas bird counts. Therewas a high turnout for all the localbird counts, with a least a couple ofthe counts having more people thanever before. All of the count daysoccurred when the weather wasrelatively benign. Bozeman’s countwas the coldest, with most of the dayremaining in the single digits, whilethe temperature during the Enniscount climbed to the upper forties.The mild weather, and the high levelof participation, was certainly afactor in all five of the counts tallyingrecord high numbers of species.Surprisingly with such a variety ofspecies seen, only one new specieswas added to any of the count circles’cumulative species totals.The Bozemancount equaledthe record highof 59 species,and had recordhigh numbersof individuals! for 8 species.Of particularnote were the 50 Bald Eagles, whichwas well beyond the old high countof 36 eagles. The new high count of15 Brown Creepers was animpressive fifty percent higher thanthe previous record high. And ofcourse, the Eurasian Collared-Dovenumbers continue to explode, with231 birds seen from nearly all cornersof the count area. Like most years,almost all of the groups addedspecies that were not seen on anyother part of the circle. Once again,the only group to find CommonRedpolls was the team covering thesoutheast quadrant.On the Ennis count, the old recordhigh of 55 species was shattered by 6species. Not only that, but the oldhigh number (3,894) of individualbirds was replaced with the newbenchmark of 7,902 birds. CanadaGoose, Mallard, and BohemianWaxwing accounted for 70% of thetotal birds seen. Another remarkablenumber from the Ennis count werethe 15 species of waterfowl scatteredacross the small pieces of open water.Especially notable were the TundraSwan, Canvasback, Redhead, and 6Ruddy Ducks. But the bird of theday was the single American WhitePelican, flying over the ValleyGarden fishing access site, north ofJeffers.A pleasant surprise for theLivingston counters was the lack ofwind on count day. There were 59species of bird seen within the countcircle. Three species of jays, Blue Jay,Steller’s Jay, and Pinyon Jay were anice addition to the count.!!The totalnumber ofspeciescounted onthe ThreeForks count!was wellabove expectations, with a new highcount of 61 species. The 2 WoodDucks discovered northwest ofLogan were a first for the Three Forkscount. Other uncommon birds seenwere: Bufflehead, American Coot,W h i t e - c r o w n e d S p a r r o w,Harris’Sparrow, Lapland Longspur,and Snow Bunting. There were anextraordinary 11 species of raptorscounted within the circle, includingnew high counts for Bald Eagle,Sharp-shinned Hawk, Cooper’sHawk, Red-tailed Hawk, and RoughleggedHawk. In all there were anamazing 18 species with new highnumbers.Not to be outdone, the WestYellowstone count set a new high forspecies with 40. Considering thiscircle’s harsh climate and limitedhabitat types, this number of speciesis quite impressive. The 301Trumpeter Swans seen on the edge ofHebgen Lake would make anyone’sday. The Ring-necked Ducks werethe only ones found on any of thecounts. New high numbers for PineGrosbeak and Evening Grosbeak,along with good numbers of GoldencrownedKinglets and Pine Siskinswere noted.Thank you again to all whoparticipated. We look forward toseeing all of you again next year.-John ParkerFebruary 2011 3


S A C A J A W E A A U D U B O N S O C I E T YSacajawea Audubon SocietyP.O. Box 1711Bozeman, MT 59771-1711Change Service RequestedNon-ProfitOrganizationU.S. Postage PaidBozeman. MT 59771Permit No. 106Sacajawea Audubon Society, affiliated with theNational Audubon Society, meets on the secondMonday of each month, September through May.Sacajawea Audubon News is sent to all SacajaweaAudubon Society members monthly Septemberthrough May. Deadline is the 10 th of the monthpreceding the month articles will appear. Please sendto: Mary Cloud Ammons, 503 Bozeman, Bozeman MT59715 or mcammons@gmail.com. Sendannouncements for upcoming activities to JennieChaiet, jenniechaiet@gmail.com.Change of Address: Please notify Sally MacDonald,222-5752 or smacbirder@msn.com if your addresschanges. When you move or are away, newsletters arereturned to us for an extra fee.Mailing AddressFind more at the Sacajawea Audubon Society Websiteat: http://www.sacajaweaaudubon.org/Sacajawea Audubon Society Officers and Committee Chairs599-1096 anne27m@yahoo.comPresidentVice PresidentTreasurerSecretaryPast PresidentBoard membersAudubon AdventuresField trips, Bird Countand Bird SightingsConservation ChairHospitality/CoffeeMembership RecordsNewsletter Ed./DesignProgram ChairPublicity ChairSchool OutreachWebmasterAnne MillbrookeOPENRon FarmerOPENPeter NorlanderAndrew GuttenbergLou Ann HarrisDiane GreshamLoreene ReidMonica BrelsfordJohn ParkerJohn ShellenbergerDiane GreshamSally MacDonaldMary Cloud AmmonsOPENJennie ChaietMonica BrelsfordJeff Pentel586-3987222-4646585-2623587-2777624-6339600-6666388-6125586-5863624-6339222-5752600-0301914-629-9163 jenniechaiet@gmail.com388-6125586-3534songbird@wispwest.netnorlander@q.comafgutte@hotmail.commontlou@earthlink.netdgresham@bresnan.netmbrelsford@montana.educonundrum@imt.netjshell@ecafinan.comdgresham@bresnan.netsmacbirder@msn.commcammons@gmail.commbrelsford@montana.edujpentel@wispwest.netWould you like to join Audubon? Clip here:National Audubon societyNAS Membership includes:• National, state, and chapter membership• Quarterly Audubon magazine andchapter newsletter September throughMay• Admission to Audubon sanctuaries• Support of conservation efforts" $20 for First Time Member" $15 for Seniors (62+) or Students________ Amount enclosedName:______________________________Address:____________________________City:____________________State:_______Zip:__________Email:_________________Mail this application and your check toSacajawea Audubon SocietyPO Box 1711Bozeman, MT 59771-1711(N51/7XCH)Montana Audubon: 406-443-3949; PO Box 595, Helena, MT 59624; mtaudubon@mtaudubon.org; www.mtaudubon.org! For direct contact: shoffman@mtaudubon.orgMontana Bird Hotline: 406-721-9799 to report unusual or out-of-season birdsThe Sacajawea Audubon Society Newsletter is Printed on 100% Recycled PaperSAS Newsletter February 2011 4

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