April-May Newsletter Is Now Online!
It's time to check out Forsyth Audubon's spring activities in the April-May 2015 Newsletter. You have lots to choose from, including our spring field trip to the Virginia mountains, our annual Spring Bird Count and Birdathon, a day trip, bird walks, Bird-friendly Communities and a couple of great chapter programs.
New Officers Are Elected for 2015-16!
At our May meeting, we elected new officers for Fiscal Year 2015-16. Congratulations to Rob Rogers, President; Ana Clara Melo, Vice President; Howard Coston, Treasurer; and Craig McCleary, Secretary. Much thanks to out going Carol Gearhart for her outstanding leadership during the past year, as we continued our Wood Thrush project, developed the Yadkin River Nature Trail, worked with Habitat for Humanity to build Bird-friendly Communities, and saw a lot of birds.
Wood Thrush Travels Here from Belize!
When several Forsyth Audubon members traveled to Belize in January 2014, they dreamed to seeing on of the wintering Wood Thrush in Belize making the journey to our local area. The dream has come true! On May 25th, Tim Guida of the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center captured a bird with one of our GPS tags at the Yadkin River section of Pilot Mountain State Park. It turns out the bird spent last winter near the Carrocol Mayan ruins in Belize. Trapping of birds continues through June 7. Volunteer to hep by emailing Kim Brand. We are looking forward to see where our other tagged birds went. Read about our Wood Thrush project.
Birds Turn Out for Our Spring Counts!
Birders and birds enjoyed beautiful weather for our Forsyth Spring Bird Count on May 2. We tallied 134 species and 4955 birds in Forsyth County. Some of the more unusual finds were an Olive-sided Flycatcher at Bethabara, a Golden-winged Warbler at Reynolda and four Bank Swallows at Salem Lake. The weather was still glorious on May 6 for our Hanging Rock count, where we shattered the old count record of 74 species by finding 88. Adding the park's new Vade Mecum property definitely helped.
A key component of our Forsyth County Spring Bird Count is Birdathon, our only regular fundraiser. Your contributions go to our local conservation efforts and to protect Audubon North Carolina's coastal sanctuaries for colonial nesting birds. Mail your donations to Forsyth Audubon, P.O. Box 15111, Winston-Salem, NC 27113. There's still time!
Spring Trip Heads to Monterey, Virginia!
Sign up now for our spring trip to the mountains and valleys of northwestern Virginia, May 29 - 31. On the way, we will drive Warbler Rd. and explore Hidden Valley. Our base will be in Warm Springs, Virginia. On Saturday morning, we head to Paddy Knob to look for Mourning Warblers. Then we will search for Golden-winged Warblers and other spring birds at Blue Grass Valley. Go to our Weekend Trips page for registration and accommodation information.
Read Report on Bethabara Breeding Bird Survey!
Remember our 2009-2010 breeding bird survey work at Historic Bethabara Park? It led to our Wood Thrush project. Kim Brand and Katherine Thorington have authored a published report of the survey results, and the pubulisher, Eagle Hill, has consented to our reproduction of the paper on our website. Go to our Bethabara Park page to find a link to the report.
Audubon Issues Report on Birds and Climate Change!
North America's birds are and will continue to be affected by the impact of climate change on their existing and future habitats. Many species that breed, nest, migrate or winter in North Carolina are among those at risk. According to a landmark study released by The National Audubon Society, the Brown-headed Nuthatch, Wood Thrush, Golden-winged Warbler, and hundreds of other species will be threatened or endangered in our children's lifetime. The study says that as many as half of North American Birds are at risk of extinction over the coming decades. Audubon North Carolina has identified 30 species of specific concern in The Tarheel State. Read the entire report at climate.audubon.org.
State of the Birds 2014: Conservation Works!
"The State of the Birds 2014" also was issued on September 9. Authored by the U.S. Committee of the North American Bird Conservation Initiative, the report echoes the warning of "Birds and Climate Change" that many of our birds species are in distress. Since 1968, arid land birds have declined by 46 percent and grassland birds by nearly 40 percent. However, the decline in grassland birds has leveled off since 1990 because of investments in grassland conservation. Coastal bird numbers actually are increasing because of the creation of national wildlife refuges and other sanctuaries. In particular, the report cites the effectiveness of public-private partnerships to create and preserve large areas of bird habitat. Read more . . .
Order "Birding Guide to Forsyth County"!
The fifth edition of "Birding Guide to Forsyth County," by David Disher, is now available. David's book, in a handy 6 x 9 paperback format, compiles documented observations for 280 bird species in Forsyth County. Learn what birds can be seen here and during which weeks of the year you are most likely to see them. Photos of uncommon sightings are included. Information on local birding spots also is included. For $15, this is a great gift for your favorite birder. All profits go to our chapter. Copies are available at Wright's Backyard Birding Center, 3906 Country Club Rd., Winston-Salem, and at Wild Birds Unlimited, 1589 Skeet Club Rd, High Point, or send email to Howard Coston. Copies also are available for sale at our monthly chapter meetings. If you have a smart phone or tablet, download the electronic version available for $4.99 from www.lulu.com.
We now have a photo page. Current albums include our Bethania work days, recent field trips, noteworthy sightings, and more.
Click here to access the Gallery
Photos: Chestnut-Sided Warbler, Yellow-crowned Night Heron, Prothonotary Warbler. © David Disher.