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Audubon Rockies
Newsletter | November 2021
Aerial image of a beaver lodge and wetland.
Beavers Offer Help for Western Waters
Did you know that beavers—with their chewing, digging, and damming—create complex wetland systems? Not only do those wetlands provide diverse habitat for birds; they also increase resilience to the effects of climate change, such as increased drought and wildfire. We recently took a trip into the Cameron Peak Fire perimeter to see how one beaver wetland fared. See what amazing results we found and learn more in this photo essay featuring ecohydrologist Dr. Emily Fairfax. Read more
Beaver lodge and wetland. Photo: Evan Barrientos/Audubon Rockies
Snowy Plover stands on a mudflat.
Snowy Plover: The Beauty of Existence
This diminutive shorebird, perched on the shoreline of Great Salt Lake, stands on the cusp of time. Behind it trails a path of ancestors stretching back into antiquity. This survivor from ancient times is now stepping into an uncertain future. Learn about the past, present, and future of Snowy Plovers in the newest installment of our Subtle Beauty of Shorebirds series.
Snowy Plover. Photo: Max Malmquist
Northern Saw-Whet Owl face
Wyoming Naturalist Program and the Search for Saw-Whets
A year ago, we and a few partners were on the cusp of launching something big. Despite Wyoming’s incredible natural beauty, it was one of the only states without a naturalist program. So in early 2021 we co-launched the Wyoming Naturalist Program. The program quickly filled with talented Wyomingites from all walks of life. Join us for a look back at the program—and its recent Northern Saw-Whet Owl banding adventure—in this article from the Casper Star-Tribune.
Northern Saw-Whet Owl. Photo: Zach Hutchinson
Greater Sage-Grouse performs courtship display.
Hope for Greater Sage-Grouse
In an encouraging step forward for Greater Sage-Grouse and wildlife management based on science, not politics, the no-listing rider was removed from the draft Senate appropriations bill on October 18. This rider has prevented the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from determining whether sage-grouse warrant protection under the Endangered Species Act since 2014. However, the Senate still has to vote on the appropriations bill before the rider is finally removed.
Greater Sage-Grouse. Photo: Evan Barrientos/Audubon Rockies
Male Mountain Bluebird perched on a plant stalk.
Colorado Gives Day
Last year, 70 percent of our funds raised from individual donations came in on Colorado Gives Day. It was an incredible success during a hard year and we’re hoping for another big turnout this year. Colorado Gives Day is December 7, but you don’t have to wait. You can already schedule your donation!
Mountain Bluebird. Photo: Evan Barrientos/Audubon Rockies
Audubon’s Conservation Ranching seal over a prairie at sunrise.
Audubon Certified Bird Friendly Seal Gets Bird Friendlier
Audubon’s Conservation Ranching Initiative updated its certification seal! Until now, like a fencepost minus a meadowlark, something was missing. Now appearing on the freshly updated seal at a grocer near you: a grazing cow, blooming coneflower, pollinating butterfly, and singing meadowlark, a foursome that better visually represents the 3.5 million acres now participating Audubon's Conservation Ranching Initiative.
Photo: Evan Barrientos/Audubon Rockies
A volunteer plants native plants.
Habitat for Habitat
On a chilly October morning, Audubon members, volunteers from United Way of Larimer County and Enterprise, and Earth Love Gardens helped us plant more than 200 native plants at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Fort Collins! We’re excited for this new Habitat Hero demonstration garden to add some color and habitat to a highly trafficked road.
Volunteers planting the new garden. Photo: Evan Barrientos/Audubon Rockies
We’d like to thank Obee’s for donating meals to our October board meeting.

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