Learn about bird banding in 2020, a massive Wyoming energy project, and protect birds in Colorado’s energy future.
Audubon Rockies
Audubon Rockies Newsletter | October 2020
A Greater Sage-Grouse displays.
Five Years After the Historic Sage-Grouse Agreement
Five years ago on September 22, 2015, the U.S Department of the Interior announced that the Greater Sage-Grouse would not need protection under the Endangered Species Act. The decision was made thanks to science-based conservation measures agreed to by federal and state governments and private individuals. Today, we reflect on the policies that are driving the bird towards an Endangered Species Act listing. Read more
Greater Sage-Grouse. Photo: Evan Barrientos/Audubon Rockies
A Marbled Godwit forages in water.
A New Chapter for Shorebirds
Each year millions of shorebirds congregate on Great Salt Lake, yet their habitat needs have been relatively understudied. Audubon’s Gillmor Sanctuary managers recently helped write a chapter in a book to change that. Learn how they’ve used science to better understand shorebirds and their habitat.
Marbled Godwit. Photo: Tim Timmis/Audubon Photography Awards
A Short-eared Owl perches on a branch.
Count Owls for Community Science
Fall may have arrived, but not all birds have left! In fact, many species of owls are just beginning their breeding season or fall migration. This October, challenge yourself to find and document owls for Audubon Rockies’ Owl-tober! Our Community Naturalist program has tools and resources to help you find and identify owls and use iNaturalist to report them.
Short-eared Owl. Photo: Mick Thompson
A closeup of a Northern Flicker.
Bird Banding Alone
From a Sharp-shinned Hawk to Brown Thrasher, our 2020 banding season yielded surprises and success despite our inability to host volunteers. Learn what trends we observed at our bird banding stations this year.
Northern Flicker. Photo: Jacelyn Downey
A Ferruginous Hawk lands on its nest with a chick in it.
Converse County Energy Project Will Hurt Wyoming, Not Help It
A massive oil and gas project in Converse County, Wyoming, could drill 5,000 wells in a biologically rich area the size of Delaware. Forty-six Greater Sage-Grouse mating sites and 1,124 raptor nests would likely be disturbed. In flaunting the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and other environmental laws, the project will do more harm than good to Wyoming’s economy, our executive director argues.
Ferruginous Hawks. Photo: Tim Boyer/Audubon Photography Awards
Community Naturalist Events
A male Wild Turkey displays.
Audubon Afterschool: Turkey Time
Our virtual education programming for kids 7-11 years-old will continue in November with Turkey Time! Register your kids for a fun, interactive session on Wild Turkeys. The program will be held on November 12 and costs $15 per child. Learn more and register
Wild Turkey. Photo: Timothy G. Lumley/Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)
Kids and adults walk at Four Mile Ranch.
Family Fridays at Four Mile Ranch
With safety in mind, we’re resuming programs at Four Mile Ranch in southwest Colorado! Each Friday in October, families are welcome to take free, self-guided interpretive walks at the ranch (registration required). We look forward to having you back on the ranch! Learn more and register
Photo: Dottie George
American Wigeon
Last Chance: Protect Wildlife in Colorado’s Energy Future
The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission is determining how it will fulfill its new mission to protect wildlife when issuing oil and gas permits. Coloradans have until October 8 to add their input on how this should be done. Audubon endorses protecting high priority habitat, requiring operators to develop plans to protect wildlife, involving Colorado Parks and Wildlife early in the process, and requiring operators to develop plans to protect wildlife. Please submit our Action Alert by October 8 to add your support for these important measures.
American Wigeon. Photo: Brad James/Audubon Photography Awards
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