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14 November 2014 
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         INTERNATIONAL

 

Support the Christmas Bird Count!


Northern Pygmy-Owl Photo: Dick Cannings

14 November 2014 – It’s time to plan for the Christmas Bird Count again! Every year between December 14 and January 5, tens of thousands of volunteers throughout the Americas help monitor populations of our wintering birds – including more than 13,000 Canadian birders in almost 450 count circles.
   Visit Bird Studies Canada’s website to find a count near you. If you’d like to set up a new count in your community, contact Canadian Christmas Bird Count coordinator Dick Cannings (dcannings@birdscanada.org). To read about last year’s count results, including regional summaries, the Canadian summary, high counts, and other features, visit the Audubon website.
   Because we no longer charge mandatory participation fees, Bird Studies Canada relies on donations to make the Christmas Bird Count possible here in Canada. Your gift is tax-deductible and directly funds national coordination, data collection, and analysis. Please donate online or mail a cheque to Bird Studies Canada with a note that the funds are for the Christmas Bird Count. We really appreciate your support!

International Support for Canada Warbler Conservation

10 November 2014 – The Canada Warbler has been added as a species of high conservation concern to Appendix II of the United Nations Environment Programme Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), a global environmental treaty. The announcement was made at the 11th meeting of the Conference of the Parties to the CMS, held last week in Quito, Ecuador. While Canada is not an official signatory to the CMS, Environment Canada supported the designation.
   For two years, Bird Studies Canada has been collaborating with various BirdLife International partners and government agencies to prepare a hemisphere-wide conservation plan for this species, which is designated Threatened in Canada. A second international workshop of the Canada Warbler Working Group was held in Bogota, Colombia this fall, and their next meeting is scheduled for March, 2015 in Ottawa.
   Bird Studies Canada is supporting research by postdoctoral fellow Dr. Kevin Fraser (University of Manitoba), who is using geolocators to document the Canada Warbler’s migration strategy and wintering areas. We’re also supporting Ph.D. research by Ana Gonzalez (University of Saskatchewan), who is investigating the warbler’s wintering ecology in the Colombian Andes and the relative importance of coffee plantations as habitat.

New Paper Examines Marine Bird Declines


Western Grebe Photo: Tom Middleton

10 November 2014 – A study recently published in the journal Conservation Biology indicates that Pacific Northwest populations of diving birds, such as alcids and grebes, are more likely to be declining than other marine birds in the area. The co-authors – including Bird Studies Canada staff Karen Barry and Pete Davidson – analyzed results from winter bird monitoring programs conducted throughout the Salish Sea, a large marine ecosystem located between the southwestern tip of British Columbia, Canada and the northwestern tip of the U.S. state of Washington. The analysis included data from our British Columbia Coastal Waterbird Survey. The paper Assessing Ecological Correlates of Marine Bird Declines to Inform Marine Conservation suggests that long-term changes in the availability of forage fish may be causing wintering range shifts of diving birds in the Salish Sea.

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        NATIONAL

 

Christmas Bird Count for Kids!


Photo: A. Robertson

14 November 2014 – Celebrate winter birds by participating in the Christmas Bird Count for Kids (CBC4Kids), a fun, engaging birdwatching event for young birders and their families. Visit Bird Studies Canada’s website to learn how you can join the CBC4Kids, and to find a count near you on the CBC4Kids Events Map. You can also follow CBC4Kids on Twitter and Facebook using the hashtag #CBC4Kids.
   We thank the many coordinators and volunteers across the country for providing opportunities for youth to connect with nature, and to contribute to important Citizen Science for birds!
   For more information, or to organize an event in your area, please visit our website or contact Bird Studies Canada at education@birdscanada.org or 1-888-448-2473. In the U.S., please contact our CBC4Kids partners at Sonoma Birding at sonomanature@gmail.com.

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        REGIONAL

 

Thank You, Manitoba Atlassers!

11 November 2014 – A packed hall of Manitoba Breeding Bird Atlas supporters gathered in Winnipeg on November 7 to share stories and memories at an evening of celebration. Bird Studies Canada was proud to join our partners in recognizing the project’s extraordinary achievements and thanking the many volunteers who have contributed to this massive undertaking. Five years of fieldwork have been completed, and the results surpassed all of the project’s participation goals and coverage targets. More than 1000 participants contributed over 40,000 hours of survey effort and conducted over 38,000 point counts, despite Manitoba’s relatively small population. Learn more about the project’s amazing accomplishments in an article and radio interview from CBC News Manitoba.
   Visit our Facebook page to view the Atlas Celebration Dinner photo album. Congratulations to the winners of the many great raffle prizes, which included Calm Air flights from Thompson to Churchill, a stay at Quesnel Lake Caribou Lodge, and a spot on the 2015 Eagle-Eye Tours Alberta Birds & Dinosaurs trip. We thank everyone involved in all aspects of this hugely successful project!

BSC Receives Watershed Award


Photo: Grand River Conservation Authority

27 October 2014 – Grand River Conservation Authority has honoured Bird Studies Canada’s work – and the priceless efforts of our volunteers – with a 2014 Grand River Watershed Award. The award recognizes outstanding conservation and environmental work in the Grand River watershed. Eighteen of our numerous long-term Citizen Science programs monitor the health of bird life in the Grand River watershed as indicators of the state of the environment, and through these programs, thousands of Bird Studies Canada Citizen Scientists have submitted hundreds of thousands of important bird observations from the watershed. The results feed directly into conservation planning, at scales from individual properties right up to the entire watershed, leading to direct benefits for maintaining populations of a long list of bird species.
   Visit the GRCA YouTube Channel to view a video about BSC’s work.


Project FeederWatch
A Great Holiday Gift Idea!


Hairy Woodpecker Photo: Ric Hornsby

Searching for the perfect gift for someone who enjoys feeding and watching backyard birds? This winter, help your favourite bird lovers use their hobby to support bird research and conservation!

By counting the kinds and numbers of birds at their feeders, Project FeederWatch participants help our scientists monitor and protect winter bird populations. Joining is simple and fun, and you don’t need to be an expert to get involved!

By donating $35 or more, you can buy a Bird Studies Canada gift membership. Benefits include:
• participation in Project FeederWatch and our other Citizen Science programs,
• project materials including a bird poster, calendar & handbook,
• a subscription to our quarterly magazine BirdWatch Canada.
And you’ll receive a charitable tax receipt for your gift!

Sign up online or call us toll-free at 1-888-448-2473 ext. 121. Please order by December 5.

Thank you for buying a bird-friendly gift this holiday season!

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