Murie will host our Annual Summer Picnic on August 10th at 5:30 pm located at the Centennial Shelter picnic area of Edness Kimball Wilkins State Park. Fried Chicken will be provided, but bring a side dish, salad, or dessert to share! Also, please plan on providing your own plate ware and drinks. See you there! If you are visiting from out of town, please call for additional information.
Please RSVP by calling Stacey Scott at 307-262-0055 or Jenny Edwards at 307-259-9956 to say you are coming so we have an idea as to how much chicken to buy.
Join us for a special presentation by Alan Corey as he debunks misconceptions about lighting and how to light your path more efficiently. The Light Pollution” program will be held on Thursday, May 11 at 7 PM at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse at the Fort Caspar Campground, 4205 Fort Caspar Road. Corey is the president of the Great Plains Astronomical Community. We live in a world of perpetual artificial light and it is causing big problems with human health, wildlife, and the environment. We call this artificial light “light pollution” and it is widely seen as a result of industrial civilization, but it doesn’t have to be. Artificial light is wreaking havoc on the natural body rhythms of both humans and wildlife and it affects the physiological processes in nearly every life-form on Earth. This discussion will focus on what light pollution is, what form it takes, where it comes from, and what we can do to lessen our impact. This program is free and open to the public. Bruce Walgren-Program Chair
The Casper Mountain Science Program will present an overview of the program on April 13th, 2023. Eric Reish, the program director of CMSP (and possibly some staff), will share an overview of the program and its history going back to the start in 2007. Included will be a summary of who the program reaches, the number of students it has served, and some of the impacts on our community and beyond. We will look over some sample curriculum and we will have a “hands-on” activity for those that choose to participate with us. We will share photos of our local students enjoying themselves while learning the Wyoming State Standards. To take part, come to the Murie Audubon free talk on April 13, 2023, at 7 p.m., at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse, at 4205 Fort Caspar Road.
MURIE AUDUBON PRESENTS EDNESS KIMBALL WILKINS STATE PARK: WHAT THE FUTURE HOLDS
Edness Kimball Wilkins State Park (known by most simply as EKW) located near one of the most populous cities in Wyoming, is very popular among outdoor enthusiasts. Audubon members flock there for birding opportunities, as well as a good place for an outdoor walk. Carlo Migliaccio is the superintendent at Edness Kimball Wilkins State Park and will be our guest speaker this month. Users of EKW have no doubt seen changes in the last few years, from the removal of Russian Olive trees to the staging of pre-fab overnight cabins. Carlo reports that they are in the process of completing several projects started last year, and have a few others in the queue, which they are hoping to complete before December of this year. Plans are to complete several conservation-oriented projects, including renovations and replanting in Betty’s Garden, replanting along the river, and the construction of a pollinator garden near the Mountain View shelter. There are also several recreational projects in the works, including the completion and opening of the overnight cabin facilities, archery range, and installation of lifejacket stands along the pond. Carlo’s presentation will address the details of these projects, along with a brief history of the park, and a discussion of longer term plans for conservation and improvement. This month we return to an in-person meeting and we will gather at the usual location at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse to participate. To take part, come to the Murie Audubon free talk on March 9, 2023, at 7 p.m., at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse, at 4205 Fort Caspar Road. Bruce Walgren
In this presentation on February 9, we learn how to create wildlife-friendly gardens that help combat the loss of open spaces. Learn how to create green corridors that link your wildscape to larger natural areas by providing habitat for wildlife. Jamie Weiss, Habitat Hero Coordinator for Audubon Rockies, will be presenting this program. Along with her B.S. in marine biology and chemistry from University of North Carolina Wilmington, Jamie is a certified interpretive guide through the National Association for Interpretation. Jamie previously worked at Boyd Lake State Park and the Georgia Aquarium as an educational interpreter, raising awareness of conservation. When not working, she is often leading an active lifestyle trying to keep up with her Border Collie puppy and Golden Retriever. She enjoys hiking, camping, snowboarding, and long-distance running. Jamie will be presenting remotely from Colorado, we will gather at the usual location at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse to participate. To take part, come to the Murie Audubon free talk on February 9, 2023, at 7 p.m., at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse, at 4205 Fort Caspar Road.
The Swift Fox, a tiny, lesser known, but valuable part of the grassland and desert ecosystems of Wyoming, will be the subject of our January 12, 2023 program. Weighing only five pounds on verage, with a black tipped tail, the Swift Fox is the smallest fox species in North America and the smallest member of the canid family. Historically found across western North America, these foxes were thought to occupy the eastern part of Wyoming and can still be found there in small numbers. Like many predators, Swift Fox numbers in the U.S. and Canada saw a dramatic decline about the turn of the 20th century due to anti-predator campaigns and habitat changes. Efforts have been made in recent decades to preserve remaining Swift Fox populations, and their work seems to be paying off. Wildlife officials in Wyoming are beginning to see an increase in Swift Fox populations, with more frequent sightings across the state. In fact, they’ve been expanding their range into higher-elevation areas like Big Piney and Pinedale. Researchers and Wildlife officials are currently using various methods to get an estimate of Swift Fox numbers, as well as some genetics from scat, to get an idea of how many individuals seem to be showing up within a given area. Research ecologists are working to trap and reintroduce Swift Foxes from Wyoming to the Fort Belknap Indian Reservation in Montana. Foxes were trapped in Natrona County this past summer. Heather O’ Brien, Nongame Mammal Biologist for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department from Casper, will be our guest speaker.
To find out more about this fascinating Fox, come to the Murie Audubon free talk on January 12, 2023, at 7 p.m., at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse, at 4205 Fort Caspar Road. -Bruce Walgren *All Swift Fox photos by Art Van Rensselae
This is the 2022 Wyoming Naturalist class, organizers, and trainers. The mission of the Wyoming Naturalist Program is to cultivate a community of volunteers to steward the state’s natural resources through conservation, education, and service. The program provides education and training to participants in biodiversity, ecology, conservation, management, and interpretation so that they can become leaders in the effort to protect our natural resources and the special places where we live. Zach Hutchinson, community science coordinator from Audubon Rockies, will share stories from the first two years of the program. If you wish to learn more about Wyoming Naturalists, or how to become one, come to the Murie Audubon free talk on October 13, 2022, at 7 p.m., at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse, at 4205 Fort Caspar Road.
This month we will learn about how torrent ducks (Merganetta armata) live at high altitudes in the Andes of South America. This presentation will help us understand these riverine specialist ducks, and the methodology used to capture them alive. We will also learn about their history: when and how torrent ducks occupied the Andes, their behaviors (diving, feeding, and reproduction), their population abundance, and their orphological and physiological adaptations to the extreme conditions that they live in, such as high elevation, low temperatures, and hypoxia. Our guest speaker, Dr. Alza-Leon, is an ecologist, working in evolutionary biology. He works as a full-time instructor at Casper College and as an associated researcher to the Centro de Ornitología y Biodiversidad in Peru. He spent more than twenty years working in the field in Peru, and other countries in South America and in the Antarctic Peninsula. He began his career as an undergraduate in 1995, working in different research and monitoring projects. Later, in 2012, he started in the Ph.D. program at the University of Alaska at Fairbanks, and finished at the University of Miami, Florida. During that time, he moved to Casper in 2017 to start his family, and worked as a zoology adjunct instructor for the University of Wyoming at Casper.
Please join us on Thursday, April 14, at 7 PM at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse, 4205 Fort Caspar Road, for this program. As always, the program is free and open to the public! -Luis Alza-Leon and Donna Walgren
On April 23, 2021 at 7:00 p.m. Charlotte Snoberger will present The Amphibians of Wyoming. She will cover the diversity of amphibians in Wyoming and share a variety of frog and toad calls. Snoberger is the Herpetologist and Wildlife Management instructor at Casper College.
Due to social distancing precautions, all future programs, including this one, will appear via Zoom. Links (see registration info below) to each program may be accessed via the Murie Audubon Facebook or web page or by requesting a link via email from firstname.lastname@example.org. You are invited to a Zoom meeting.
When: Apr 23, 2021 07:00 PM Mountain Time (US and Canada) Register in advance for this meeting: https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJIqcemoqDwtHNCCrKvscL2wrWvfjsmKgMKv After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. Program Chair note: There is a great article in the April 2021 Wyoming Wildlife magazine entitled Who’s That Hopper all about Wyoming’s hoppers. Bruce Walgren
Audubon Rockies Community Naturalist Zach Hutchinson will be the guest speaker at the Audubon program for October.
Zach returned at the end of September from a whirlwind, five-week journey around the globe! He spent two weeks in South Africa, two weeks in southeast Arizona, and one week in southern Colorado.
Okay, not so much the globe, but he did cross an ocean! He will present mostly on his time in South Africa, where he experienced safaris, sharks, and sunbirds! While birds were not the focus of his trip, he will share some of the photos of birds he took in between his other adventures. Prepare to hear about amazing sightings, harrowing escapes, and awful misfortunes!
Zach’s presentations are always entertaining, educational, and fun, so you won’t want to miss this. Please join us on Friday, October 12, 2018 at 7 pm at the Oil & Gas Conservation Commission Building
at 2211 King Blvd. for this exciting program. As always, the program is free and open to the public! See you there!
– Zach and Bruce