Last year the Hat-6 Lek had no Sage-Grouse. That eliminated the easiest place around Casper to see strutting Sage-Grouse. Now to see this spectacular display, you will have to go to a non-public lek. As part of Murie’s contribution to counting Sage-Grouse leks, I count two leks three times each during April and the first few days of May. I am willing to take up to 5 people with me on a first come first serve basis. The weather has to be dry so that we don’t tear up the dirt roads, so I cannot plan very many days in advance. I leave the ranch about 5:00 AM (as April progresses I leave earlier) and plan to get back about 3 hours later. Call me, Stacey Scott, if you are interested. Call before 8:00 PM (I go to bed early) at 262-0055.
Identiflight and Windfarms?
As most of us know, wind farms do kill some raptors, and other birds and bats. But technology is contributing to the conservation of eagles at windfarms with IdentiFlight®, a machine vision system being tested at the Top of the World windfarm in Rolling Hills, WY. Tom Hiester, Senior Vice-President, Strategy, for RES (Renewable Energy Systems), leads the IdentiFlight® technology development, and he will describe the technology, its status of deployment, and testing. Tom has nearly 40 years in the renewable energy business as a project and technology developer. IdentiFlight is high-precision optical technology used to detect eagles and protect them from collisions with rotating wind turbine blades. Automatic detection of birds, and the determination if it is an eagle, occur within seconds for eagles flying anywhere within a one kilometer hemisphere around the IdentiFlight tower. If an eagle’s speed and flight path indicate risk of collision with a wind turbine, a signal is generated to shut down that specific wind turbine, so that the probability of impact with rotating turbine blades is substantially reduced or eliminated. By empowering wind farm operators with signals to make highly targeted, informed and objective curtailment decisions, unnecessary and costly interruptions are avoided and legally protected species are conserved. The eagle photo was taken with the IndentiFlight system at about 700 meters. The program will be on Friday, April 14, 2017 at 7 PM at the Oil & Gas Conservation Commission Building at 2211 King Blvd. And as always, the program is free and open to the public!!
Our first Owl Prowl will be this upcoming Friday, March 17th, 2017. We will be meeting at the Menard’s Parking lot at 6:30pm and leaving for Box Elder Canyon at 6:45pm sharp. Please bring the appropriate clothing and flashlights/headlights, as it will be dark once we get to the canyon.
Owl Prowl to Box Elder Canyon
Friday, March 17th, 2017
Menard’s Parking Lot at 6:30pm.
Looking forward to seeing everyone!
Murie Audubon will have a field trip to the Jackson Canyon Eagle Roost on Saturday, Feb 18. We will meet at 3:00 PM at the Goose Egg Inn parking lot. That is about 200 yards south of Wyoming 220 on Goose Egg Rd. I even think that the Highway Department has a sign that says Goose Egg Rd. The Highway Department has its own name for roads around here, and only about half the time does the Highway sign list the same name as that assigned by the County.
My ranch hand took some friends up to the roost last night, and he said the biggest problem is slipping in the mud. He only saw 6 eagles, but he was back before dark. He also said there were lots of robins and some Clark’s Nutcrackers. This hike is energetic, climbing about 700 feet in a mile and a half on mud and rocks. Bring a flashlight because we will come down in the dark. Also, even if it is warm and calm in Casper, it will be cold and windy on the edge of Jackson Canyon. Call Stacey Scott at 262-0055 before 8:00 PM for more details.
What Ducks Eat and Why Does It Matter?
Have you ever observed a wild duck in a pond or marsh while it is eating “something” in the water? Have you ever wondered what in the world that duck is finding in this water?
Wyoming Game and Fish Migratory Bird biologist Nate Huck will be our guest speaker at the February meeting. Nate is a Wisconsin native where he got his Undergraduate degree; he got his master’s degree in Texas. Nate will talk to us about what ducks eat and why what they eat matters ecologically.
Murie Audubon’s programs are free and open to the public. The program will be on Friday, February 10, 2017, at 7 PM at the Oil & Gas Conservation Commission Building at 2211 King Blvd.
(Note – we will not be hosting the Annual Murie Audubon Society Banquet and Fundraiser in February.)