Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Butterfly Count this Memorial Day weekend

Please consider joining the North American Butterfly Association!

You can participate in a butterfly count on Memorial Day weekend - The NABA Memorial Day Count (in the United States) will be held May 27-29, 2017.

All you need to do is to observe butterflies at one or more of your favorite butterflying localities (such as your own backyard) this coming Memorial Day weekend and note what butterflies you’ve seen. There are no requirements regarding how much time or area you cover.

Then go to the NABA web site,, and from there to the Recent Sightings ( web page and enter your report, filling in the location, date, and butterflies seen.

Our good friend Mike Reese is a coordinator for these counts. See his website and contact him at

bird-window strikes and Dr. Daniel Klem

From the COLLISIONS listserv:

An article about one of the people who has advanced our knowledge of bird mortality from window strikes:

"The bird-window collision issue is really gaining traction and it is because of everyone's combined efforts, and all should be proud of what this has done to advance our common cause."

Peter G. Saenger
Acopian Center for Ornithology
Department of Biology
Muhlenberg College
2400 Chew Street
Allentown, Pa  18104-5586

Monday, May 15, 2017

Red-headed Woodpecker population status

Red-headed Woodpecker population numbers continue to decline, but some local populations have rebounded a bit.

Here is the BBS trend graph for the Prairie Hardwood Transition Bird Conservation Region (southern WI is in this zone):
Here is the trend graph for Wisconsin alone:

 These two graphs look very similar. They point to continuing long-term decline.

Birders see a few individuals here and there, and there are some very localized increases. That provides very little real information about their population as a whole, but the expanding use of eBird, and the unfolding Wisconsin Breeding Bird Atlas II will gradually fill out this picture. The decline is occurring in many areas of their geographic range, including but not limited to Wisconsin.

Here are some articles with much more information:

Birds of North America - Red-headed Woodpecker;JSESSIONID=143EB7FEE3815E35FD088B2F94990688

"The Return of the Loud Redheads"

"The Population Decline of the Red-headed Woodpecker in Wisconsin and Illinois"

WDNR - Red-headed Woodpecker 

National Audubon - Red-headed Woodpecker

Saturday, May 13, 2017

learn more about the Black-throated Blue Warbler

 Learn more about the Black-throated Blue Warbler -
Ph. by Charles J. Sharp - Wikim. Commons
 Go to Audubon's Priority Birds page for this species:

 Learn how climate change could affect this bird's range: "In the broadest and most detailed study of its kind, Audubon scientists have used hundreds of thousands of citizen-science observations and sophisticated climate models to predict how birds in the U.S. and Canada will react to climate change."

More on this bird in the Wisconsin All-Bird Plan:

"Loss or fragmentation of large blocks of older, structurally complex forests may negatively impact this species. Overbrowsing by deer may suppress populations locally by reducing the shrub layer available for nesting (WDNR 2005). Loss of habitat on the wintering grounds in the West Indies also is suggested as a possible limiting factor (Holmes 1994)."

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Great Wisconsin Birdathon news

Great Wisconsin Birdathon halfway to goal

If birds bring joy to your life and you would like to support work that protects them, then now is the time to participate in the Great Wisconsin Birdathon, a walkathon-style fundraiser for conserving birds close to home. Get involved by making a donation online at or by creating/joining a team that collects donations and spends a fun day in the field counting birds. Some noteworthy teams this year include the Lower Wisconsin Scan da Avians, Millenial Falcons, Cutright's Old Coots, Lake Superior eBirders, Secretary Birds, WYBC Teen Birders, and many more. The birdathon period opened April 15 and continues through June 15, with many teams hitting the field in May. Learn More >>