Thursday, November 7, 2013

some bird conservation news from the American Bird Conservancy

Bird Conservation Updates from American Bird Conservancy - November 7, 2013

Dr. Michael Hutchins, Renowned International Wildlife, Expert Joins American Bird Conservancy to Oversee Wind Energy Campaign 

Dr. Michael Hutchins, an international authority on wildlife conservation, management, and policy who has authored over 220 scholarly and popular articles and books on wildlife issues, has joined the staff of American Bird Conservancy (ABC). He will oversee the organization’s Bird-Smart wind energy campaign.

“We are thrilled that Michael is joining our team and excited to have his considerable talents focused on the challenges associated with making wind a Bird-Smart energy source,” said Dr. George Fenwick, President of ABC.

As wind campaign coordinator, he will lead ABC’s national efforts to make wind developments Bird-Smart and minimize the impact of this rapidly expanding energy source on bird populations. For more details see

Comment to Conserve Greater Sage-Grouse
A national effort is underway to conserve the magnificent Greater Sage-Grouse, known for its spectacular mating dance. You can be part of this effort to reverse declining grouse populations, while providing for sustainable use of public lands and a legacy of protected landscapes.  Send a comment letter urging that BLM’s Northwest Colorado plan adopt conservation measures—called the conservation alternative, or "Alternative C"—to ensure sustainable management for the Greater Sage-Grouse. Please click on this link to send a comment letter:

Ø  More on sage-grouse: Babbitt on Grouse: National Strategy Needed to Conserve Iconic Species. Defenders of Wildlife Blog by Noah Matson:

Cats Indoors Action Alert: Sign On Letter to Protect Wildlife and Public Lands

Given the proven degree of environmental harm and human health risks, federal and state agencies responsible for managing wildlife and public lands need to take action to protect birds and other wildlife from cat predation. American Bird Conservancy has drafted a letter to Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell asking the Department to develop a clear management policy to protect wildlife and to address the impacts of feral cat colonies on public lands. Eighty bird and habitat conservation organizations have endorsed the letter thus far. Please take a look and consider adding your organization to the list of endorsements.

Report from Gov't of Canada Echoes U.S. Finding: Outdoor Cats are Leading Human-Caused Source of Bird Mortality

A new study from the government of Canada that looked at more than 25 human-caused sources of bird mortality has found that domestic cats, both feral and owned, are the leading lethal threat to birds in the country. The study found that the median estimate of cat-caused mortality—almost 200 million bird deaths per year—was about six times greater than the next leading mortality estimate of about 32 million attributed to car collisions. The third-leading cause was collisions with buildings or homes, with a rate of about 22 million bird deaths per year. For more see

Los Angeles Zoo treats 21 California condors for lead poisoning
LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- In the wild they are tough, living up to 80 years and surviving primarily on animal carcass. But these California condors now need help.
"Some of them are upwards of 15, 16, 17 years old, and we raised them way back then. To see that it's kind of heartbreaking. They're [sic] food is poisoned, so nothing can survive that," Los Angeles Zoo animal keeper Michael Clark said.
A record 21 condors have been taken to the L.A. Zoo for rehabilitation in a two-week period, caught by Fish and Wildlife and testing positive for lead poisoning. Field crews trap condors in the wild twice a year to check their health and to put transmitters on them. Clark says he expects more to come in. See for video.
Wisconsin's 2011 Blow-Down Area Provides Benefits for Imperiled Species

Not far from the Minneapolis/St. Paul metro area, a massive 2011 wind storm struck and leveled trees for miles across northwestern Wisconsin, causing a variety of widespread problems, which for some are still an issue today. Yet out of the wind-strewn wreckage comes a happy “re-start” for the tiny Golden-winged Warbler, one of the most threatened, non-federally listed bird species in eastern North America.

A unique set of partners—the state of Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR), six county governments in the state, private landowners, and American Bird Conservancy (ABC)—have united to take advantage of this opportunity to create the required habitat for the Golden-winged Warbler. For more see

Ø  More on Golden-Winged Warbler from Wisconsin Public Radio:

Neotropical Migratory Bird Conservation Act Toolkit Now Available

The NMBCA outreach toolkit was developed by the NMBCA Communications Team (ABC, Audubon, AFWA, Cornell, and FWS).  It includes key messages, statistics, graphics, and other resources for media or partners who wish to communicate about the NMBCA. Please check it out at 

Training on State Wildlife Action Plans Now Available Online

On June 4-6, 2013, National Wildlife Federation, Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service hosted Connect, Collaborate, and Conserve In an Era of Changing Landscapes: An Interactive Training on State Wildlife Action Plans, at the U.S. FWS's National Conservation Training Center in Shepherdstown, WV. With federally mandated revisions to State Wildlife Action Plans due in 2015, this training was meant to ensure that the updated plans will be the best they can be. Each day focused on a broad topic, covering landscape conservation, climate change, and building public support.

The agenda, powerpoints, and videos of presentations are available on the NWF Workshops website, under "National Training":

Steve Holmer
Senior Policy Advisor
American Bird Conservancy
202/234-7181 ext 216
202/744-6459 cell
Director, Bird Conservation Alliance

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