Friday, May 27, 2011

bird conservation news - local and international

If you haven't looked at it lately, don't miss the growing amount of excellent information on the Bird City Wisconsin website. For example, check out the map with the existing municipalities that have attained Bird City status, here. And go to their homepage to begin learning about all of the other activities and initiatives they have in process - if you haven't been following these developments, you will be truly amazed!

Over on the international front, read recent news from BirdLife International at this link.

Monday, May 23, 2011

new birding book - a review

Steve Betchkal, for those of you who may not have met him or read any of his writing, or may not have seen any of his expert videography (he works for a local television station - WQOW - in Eau Claire, WI), is a man with diverse skills and interests. But they all sort of funnel into and are magnified when he starts talking about or writing about or photographing birds. Steve has a wide-ranging sense of humor. All of these things are displayed fully in his new book Make Birds - Not War: Step By Step Instructions for Saving the World a Birder at a Time. (Adarolf Publishing, 2011).

Steve is the author of All of This and Robins Too: A Guide to the 50 or So Best Places to Find Birds in Wisconsin.

But about this new book - this is not your usual birding book. Although descriptions of birding locations, evaluations of favorite places, the merits of the various wheres and hows of birding are found throughout, that's really only part of what's here. There is also poetry, philosophy, wry humor - and much, much more - and all wrapped thoroughly around and within the life and experiences of a birder. Is Steve "obsessed" with birds? Obsessed in a good way (and I hope I am, too). These are fluid, colorful, uplifting, evocative, and sometimes laugh-out-loud stories about birding, birds, birders, travel - and life.

Maybe not for everyone - but maybe for you. HIGHLY recommended. The book will be available after June 8th.

Monday, May 16, 2011

BirdLife International news

Recent news from BirdLife International can be found here. Of special interest is a recent news post on "Land use changes from a bird’s-eye view".

Friday, May 13, 2011

lots of birding news from all over

If you're home as I am instead of at the WSO Annual Convention in Lacrosse, here are a few links. Today I found a birding news website that I had previously overlooked - see it here; maybe it will be new to you also.


And I have not looked at the Birdzilla site in a while, but did so today - see it here.

Read a great field ecology blog

Read the great blog of a superb field biologist, Dr. Josh Kapfer, who is on his way back to Wisconsin, where he has accepted a teaching position at UW-Whitewater - see the blog at this link.

Josh is an expert herpetologist - he did his graduate work on bullsnakes, does radio telemetry with box turtles, and he can tell you a good story of the day he and I found a queen snake (Regina septemvittata). But saying that would seem to somewhat limit his many interests in ecology - and he has many. Check his blog for much more information - and some great stories!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

2011 State of the Birds on Public Lands and Waters

"This year’s report provides the nation’s first assessment of the distribution of birds on public lands and helps public agencies identify which species have significant potential for conservation in each habitat." Learn more by downloading the full report at this link.