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.
Each February, for four days, the world comes together for the love of birds. Over these four days we invite people to spend time in their favorite places watching and counting as many birds as they can find and reporting them to us. These observations help scientists better understand global bird populations before one of their annual migrations.
Joanne Theobald will be our guest speaker on November 10 at 7 PM for her program entitled, “Turkey Vultures: Friend or Foe?” Theobald will share her collection of photographs and videos, as well as information about turkey vulture traits, habits, and folklore. Theobald, formerly director of counselling at Casper College, is a participant in University of Wyoming’s Wyoming Naturalist Program and has been volunteering at Edness Kimball Wilkins Park as well as helping with the Rocky Mountain Amphibian Survey this year. She says, “My real passion is turkey vultures. For the past six years, a group of about forty has roosted in the spruce trees behind my house, and I’ve become obsessed with them. People have many negative misconceptions about them, and I’d like to educate others about these amazing creatures.” Theobald maintains an Instagram page about turkey vultures, @vulturesinmybackyard. If you wish to learn more about Turkey Vultures, come to the Murie Audubon free talk on November 10, 2022, at 7 PM, at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse, at 4205 Fort Caspar Road. Bruce Walgren
Speaker Ben Robb, currently a research ecologist for the U.S. Geological Survey’s Fort Collins Science Center, studied the impacts of Interstate 80 on pronghorn migration and crucial habitat for his master’s degree at the University of Wyoming. His study predicts the best corridors to restore pronghorn movement. Robb’s research was supported by the Wyoming Migration Initiative at the Wyoming Cooperative Fish and Wildlife Research Unit at UW. His research focuses on wildlife found along the periphery of human development, and how this research can be applied to try and improve access to habitats. Audubon members and the public are welcome to a free talk March 10, 7 p.m., at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse at 4205 Fort Caspar Road concerning pronghorn migration and habitat and the barrier I-80 presents.
The speaker will be joining us remotely via Zoom. Participants can either join us at the Clubhouse or register in advance for this meeting:
MURIE AUDUBON PRESENTS THE PLATTE RIVER FISHERY BY MATT HAHN
This month we will learn about the North Platte River in, around, and through Casper. We will learn about the history of the river from pioneer times, through dam building, and oil and other pollutants that ended up in the river, to where it is today. Matt Hahn, a fisheries biologist for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department will be our guest speaker. A twenty year veteran with the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Matt began his career in Green River, then in Laramie, before coming to Casper in 2006.
Matt will bring us up to date on status and health, as well as the management challenges of the North Platte River. Please join us on Thursday, February 10, at 7 PM at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse, at 4205 Fort Caspar Road, for this program. As always, the program is free and open to the public!
As the result of a self-inflicted error on my part, this program did not take place as scheduled on January 13. I had taken the precaution of contacting Andrea (our speaker) to verify that she would be able to make the meeting night on the 20th—wait, the 20th? Yeah I do not know where that came from, but to make a long story short we verified the she would be here on the 20th for the program. So, yes, she will be here at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse on the 20th to tell us all about migration and Burrowing Owls. On the plus side there was not a scheduling problem with Izaak Walton; the meeting room is available. Please accept my apologies for this major foul up and I hope that you all will be able to come out for this long anticipated program. I have updated the program announcement to reflect corrections and the updated dates.
Burrowing Owls Across North America
Andrea Orabona did a Burrowing Owl program via Zoom in May 2021. We felt that the program was interesting enough that we hoped to have her present the program again to a larger audience. So, we scheduled Andrea to do an updated in-person version of the owl program in October, 2021. Due to circumstances beyond our control, she was unable to present the Burrowing Owl program in October, but instead, she did present a very interesting program on Harlequin ducks via Zoom. Barring any other problems, Andrea will be able to do an in-person updated version of the May 2021 program on January 20, 2022. The presentation itself is a collaborative effort sponsored by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department and Murie Audubon Society.
Andrea Orabona is the statewide Nongame Bird Biologist for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department’s Nongame Program based in Lander, and will be presenting the meeting. She is collaborating on this project with colleague Dr. Courtney Conway from the University of Idaho and his research partners from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.
Recent developments in solar-powered GPS technology in the form of smaller transmitters are helping researchers collect data on the elusive seasonal migration and winter ranges of Burrowing Owls that nest in Wyoming during the summer months. In the past few years, researchers have placed satellite transmitters on Burrowing Owls in western states. Unfortunately, many of those have died or their transmitters have stopped sending locations. Owls outfitted with the new transmitters from Wyoming, along with other owls from western states and Canadian provinces, will add new data and hopefully new understating about these mysterious little birds.
The Burrowing Owl is classified as a Species of Greatest Conservation Need in Wyoming, making this full annual cycle conservation project extremely important. Andrea will discuss the need for this work, project objectives and methods, and results of Burrowing Owl migration.
Please join us on Thursday, January 20, 2022 at 7 pm at the Izaak Walton Clubhouse at 4205 Fort Caspar Road for this program. As always, the program is free and open to the public! Hope to see you there!
We have a couple of Murie Audubon Society Chapter open volunteer positions for your consideration.
Membership Chair – This position requires some knowledge of working with spreadsheets and working with other Board members to update our membership database, recruit new members, and other duties related to membership.
Webmaster/IT Manager – This position requires knowledge of WordPress and cPanel, updating and managing our website.
Experience desired, but not necessary. We can train you if you are interested and have a computer with Internet access. If interested, please send an email to email@example.com
The Casper Christmas Bird Count will be conducted Saturday, December 18. We will meet at 8:00 AM at the SonRise Room of the First United Methodist Church (332 East 2 nd St), and have a potluck supper after 5:00 PM at the same location to compile what was seen during the day. The SonRise Room is on the east side of the main church that is entered from under the breezeway between the Asbury Center (on the corner of Beech & Second Streets) and the main church. On Saturday morning we will split into groups that will cover as much of the 15 mile diameter circle as we can (map is on the following pages). Some of the parties, like Jackson Canyon and the Mountain, will be pretty energetic outings, but others will mostly be driving. Everyone is welcome to participate, regardless of experience, even for part of the day. Call Stacey Scott at 262-0055, or Bruce Walgren at 234-7455 for more information.- Bruce Walgren