The Birds-of-Paradise Project: Natural history media for science and conservation – with Edwin Scholes – Tuesday, March 16th

Red Bird of Paradise – photo by Tim Laman

Among the most amazing creatures in the world, more than 40 species of birds-of-paradise live in New Guinea’s swaths of the Indo-Pacific rainforest region, one of the largest intact tropical forested areas on Earth.

The stars of the show in National Geographic and PBS Nature TV documentaries, the birds-of-paradise have become icons of New Guinea’s rainforests. Their extraordinary beauty is unlike that of any other birds on Earth, but it’s their wide range of bizarre breeding behaviors that captivates audiences—from elaborate dancing and flaring their elegant plumes to shape-shifting displays that make these exotic species seem like avian transformers.

Edwin Scholes is the founder and leader of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Birds-of-Paradise Project, and has been studying and documenting them since his first trip to New Guinea in 1999. It was in 1997 as an undergraduate biology student that Ed first saw the BBC documentary film “Attenborough in Paradise.” That film, which was the result of Sir David Attenborough’s lifelong passion for the birds-of-paradise, was the first to capture these birds’ wonder and beauty in any depth.  The film inspired Edwin to devote his career to their study and protection.

On Tuesday, March 16th, at 7 p.m., York County Audubon will be delighted to host Ed Scholes to tell us about these amazing creatures, and the efforts to preserve their threatened habitat.   FMI:  www.birdsofparadiseproject.org

York County Audubon will be presenting this program online. There’s no charge to participate, but you need to register in advance to watch this program. To do so, please click on this link and enter your name and email address:

https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_Jtyi8u8uRRy5aESZyx_4ZA

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

We hope you can join us!

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A Video of our February Program: The Amazing Winter Crow Roost

This program was presented on Feb 16th, 2021. Scroll down to the original post on this program for a full description.

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The Amazing Winter Crow Roost – with Bob Fox and Dana Duxbury-Fox – Tuesday, Feb 16th

Photo by Craig Gibson

“It blows your mind. Thousands of them. They just keep rolling in.”  It’s a spectacular display of sight and sound, a massive swarm of as many as 20,000 crows, a sky blotted black by their numbers, a crescendo of cawing that slowly fades to an eerie silence, night closing in.

As it has for at least 30 years, this flock of mostly American crows arrives in Lawrence, Mass. in November, and carries out some of the primordial behaviors that still puzzle the amateur birders and professional ornithologists who study what many of them believe are the world’s most clever and social birds.

Photo by Craig Gibson

What brings these thousands of crows – a mix of residents and seasonal migrants from as far as the St. John’s River in Canada — to places like Lawrence for the winter from November to March?  Why do they stage so massively in the evenings, then fly off together in the dark to roost elsewhere, then scatter in the morning to forage for food as far as 50 miles away, then return to stage and roost for another night?  [Preceding description by Keith Eddings, The Eagle-Tribune]

On Tuesday, February 16th at 7 p.m., York County Audubon will be delighted to host Dana Duxbury-Fox and Bob Fox, who will share a wealth of information about crows. The Foxes are hardly amateurs. The couple from North Andover have birded worldwide through more than half a century, logging over 6,500 of the world’s 10,000 or so species.  In 2013, Bob co-authored “The Birds of New Hampshire,” a 473-page illustrated book that chronicles all 427 species living in that state.  He helped found Manomet Bird Observatory. Dana has spent 70+ summers in New Hampshire, where she became fascinated by loons. She has long been active in chronicling and protecting bird life.  FMI:  www.wintercrowroost.com

York County Audubon will be presenting this program online. There’s no charge to participate, but you need to register in advance to watch this program. To do so, please click on this link and enter your name and email address:

https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_QQf_HF6ZTW2rjfvry-v9rw

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

We hope you can join us!

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A Year in the Life of North American Owls – with Paul Bannick – Tuesday, January 19th

“If your average picture is worth a thousand words, a Paul Bannick wildlife photograph is worth 20,000. Having worked with wildlife photographers for articles in Audubon, Smithsonian, Sierra, National Wildlife and other magazines for 45 years, I have yet to encounter one who better captures the magic and beauty of the natural world.”  Ted Williams, former Editor of Audubon Magazine

On Tuesday, January 19th at 7 p.m., York County Audubon is honored to host award winning author and photographer Paul Bannick.  His online Zoom program will feature video, sound and stories from the field, and images from his book, Owl: A Year in the Lives of North American Owls.  His dramatic images follow the owls through the course of one year in their distinct habitats, showing their courtship, mating and nesting in spring, fledging and feeding their young in summer, dispersal and gaining independence in fall, and, finally, winter’s migrations and competitions for food.

Paul’s work can be found prominently in many bird guides, including those from Audubon, Peterson, and The Smithsonian, and has been featured in The New York Times, Audubon, Sunset, Nature’s Best Photography Magazine, and National Geographic online.  After a successful career in the software industry, he chose to pursue his passion for wildlife conservation, and now works with Conservation Northwest, a Seattle based non-profit dedicated to protecting, connecting and restoring wildlands and wildlife from the coast of Washington to the Rockies of British Columbia.   FMI:  http://paulbannick.com/ and on Facebook under Paul Bannick Photography.

There’s no charge to participate, but you need to register in advance to watch this program. To do so, please click on this link and enter your name and email address:

https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_N-kbcTtzQIOSWua4YG3RdA

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

We hope you can join us!

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The Birds of Maine – by Peter Vickery

There’s a spectacular new comprehensive book: The Birds of Maine by Peter Vickery. And, fittingly, a wonderful program just presented the story of the creation of this book. If you’re interested in the birds (and birders) of Maine, take a look:

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A Video of Zack Klyver’s Program: The Narwhal’s Tusk – The Ten Most Remarkable Marine Mammal Adaptations

This program was presented on Nov 17th. Scroll down to the original post on this program for a full description.

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The 2021 Maine Birds Desk Calendar is now available!

For many years, our former Board member, Marie Jordan, an avid birder and photographer, has produced a calendar and offered it for sale, with her graciously donating the calendars to YCA to support our educational programs. We’ve always presented them at our fall program meetings, but this year that’s not possible, of course, so we’re making them available by mail. 

It’s a desk calendar in a 4” by 6” plastic case that opens into a stand to display each month.  Each page features a great photo she took this year of a Maine bird.  The cost is $10 plus mailing costs.  They’re wonderful anywhere in the house, and also make great gifts!   And York County Audubon tremendously appreciates your support for our programs. 

To place an order, please make out a check payable to York County Audubon, write Calendar in the memo line, and mail it to Marie Jordan, 32 Crestview Drive, South Portland, ME 04106.  Be sure to include the address or addresses that the calendar(s) should be sent to.   If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Marie at wooddk5555@gmail.com.

The costs including postage and handling are:

1 calendar – $10 plus $4 postage and handling

2 calendars (mailed to one address) – $20 plus $6 postage and handling

3 calendars (mailed to one address) – $30 plus $8.50 postage and handling

4 calendars (mailed to one address) – $35 plus 8.50 postage and handling

Thank you!

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The Narwhal’s Tusk: the ten most remarkable marine mammal adaptations – with Zack Klyver – November 17th

Have you ever wondered why a narwhal has a tusk? How sperm whales catch squid in the deep dark ocean? Which whale has the biggest tail, lives the longest, and holds the world migration record? Did you know that whale “waste” results in great plant plankton blooms in the ocean that produce the oxygen we breath, slow climate change and help create more productive fisheries?

On Tuesday, November 17th, York County Audubon is delighted to host an online Zoom program featuring Maine marine mammal naturalist and conservationist Zack Klyver.  He will give a presentation based on a book he is writing titled The Narwhal’s Tusk: the ten most remarkable marine mammal adaptations. Over millions of years of evolution, marine mammal physiology has evolved to take full advantage of the world’s oceans. Marine mammals occupy all oceans and major rivers of the world.

Narwhals (c) Paul Nicklin and Getty Images

Sound and hearing are incredibly important to marine mammals as sound travels through ocean water four to five times more quickly than air. We will explore the magnificent sound production system called  echolocation in Sperm Whales – the largest of the toothed whales and the icon of Moby Dick.

Zack will draw on his personal travels from around the world, including the Arctic and Antarctica, and his encounter with the oldest known living blue whale in the world. Learn all about the narwhal’s tusk, how deep marine mammals dive, how long they live, and other examples of astounding adaptations. Recent scientific discoveries have also expanded our knowledge around the important role marine mammals play in oxygen production, carbon sequestration, and the regulation of global climate.

Zack was born in Nairobi, Kenya in 1968 and grew up in a commercial fishing family in Eastport, Maine, the eastern most city in the United States. He is a graduate of College of the Atlantic in Bar Harbor, Maine, and has worked for thirty years as a whale watch naturalist guiding whale and seabird watching tours on the Gulf of Maine and around the world. During that time, he led over 3,000 trips with 600,000 people.

On Tuesday, November 17th at 7 p.m., we’re delighted to have Zack present this program. There’s no charge to participate, but you need to register in advance to watch this program. To do so, please click on this link and enter your name and email address:

https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_R-C17_1FSYKfW_Wi2PkLaQ

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

We hope you can join us!

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A Video of Greg LeClair’s program: Conserving Reptiles and Amphibians – a Maine Focus

This program was presented on Oct 20th. Scroll down to the original post on this program for a full description.

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The Harlequin – Autumn 2020

Please click on the link below to view the Autumn 2020 issue of our Harlequin newsletter, including a feature article: John James Audubon – Revisited.

http://www.yorkcountyaudubon.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/Harlequin-Autumn-2020.pdf

Posted in Harlequin newsletter, Uncategorized