The Illinois Audubon Society’s mission is to preserve, protect and promote native plants and animals in Illinois. Our sanctuaries provide much needed habitat and opportunities for everyone to experience nature.
But that takes work …

Springfield Audubon Society’s volunteer stewards carry out the mission of habitat protection and education and recognize that natural areas land management is a constant and never-ending job.

That is why we’re asking our members and partners of Springfield Audubon Society to join with us in raising funds that will support stewardship at Adams Wildlife Sanctuary where at this time a priority need is to purchase an all terrain vehicle (ATV).

With the removal of most of the invasive species, the stewards have planted 144 replacement trees and bushes throughout the Sanctuary’s 40 acres. These plants have to be watered regularly for the first growing season. 

The ATV would make this job require less manpower, be less physically demanding and quicker to accomplish. . The ATV will also be used to accommodate visitors to Adams who have limited mobility. 

Please consider a contribution to this effort. Make a tax-deductible gift to the Illinois Audubon Society by check or online at illinoisaudubon.org using the Donate button. Indicate that your donation is for Adams Stewardship in the Additional Information box on the checkout page. Checks should be mailed to Illinois Audubon Society, PO Box 2547, Springfield, Illinois 62708. 

Stewardship Fundraiser Update – $1000 Challenge Grant Underway

We are excited to announce that the Illinois Native Plant Society-Central Chapter has put forward a challenge grant to help Illinois Audubon Society raise funds for sanctuary stewardship. The Chapter, an IAS Affiliate Member, will match new donations to the campaign, dollar-for-dollar, up to $1,000.

“Our members want to support projects that promote the conservation of Illinois native plants and natural communities,” explained Trish Quintenz, President of the Central Chapter. “We are pleased to offer this challenge and encourage everyone to consider making a donation. This campaign will benefit our friends and partners who give so many hours of their time volunteering at Adams and Bremer, as well as Illinois Audubon Sanctuaries across the state,” she added.

“Everyone has a chance to double their gift through this generous initiative,”
commented Jim Herkert, Executive Director.

Please consider making a contribution during this generous challenge. Give a tax-deductible gift to the Illinois Audubon Society by check or online at illinoisaudubon.org and use the Donate button.

 

1 day ago

Springfield Audubon Society

The Springfield Audubon Chapter hosted its monthly presentation on Thursday, September 20, 2018. Tony Rothering, Professor of Biology at Lincoln Land Community College, led us on a bird walk through Adams Wildlife Sanctuary then gave a wonderful presentation entitled “Adventures in Birding”. We had a nice turnout with 44 guests in attendance.
Tony Rothering is a native of Winchester, Illinois. He received an Associate’s degree from Lincoln Land Community College, a bachelor’s degree in Zoology from Eastern Illinois University, and a Master’s degree in wildlife Management from Western Illinois University. He is a professor of biology at LLCC and is a permitted bander.
Tony’s “hook” bird was a Brown thrasher. When he was a kid, and his mother was teaching a module on birding, one thing led to another, and before long, his dad and sister and the whole family had become hooked on birding. He has fond memories of Sunday afternoon drives with his family looking for birds, and he remebers well that excitement when they spotted and looked up their first real bird, a Brown thrasher.
Professor Rothering began his presentation by pointing out that there is a great diversity of bird species, with some 10,000 species recognized worldwide. This is a dynamic number, decreasing at times due to extinctions and occasionally increasing due to taxonomic changes. In North America, there are 914 different species of birds reported, and in Illinois, 444 species can potentially be seen.
Bird banding has a long history. Called “ringing” in many other countries, the first recorded use of leg bands to identify individual birds is Henry IV banding his falcons in 1595. In 1899, a Danish schoolteacher developed the first numbered leg bands, and in 1902, Paul Bartsch developed the first numerical system in North America.
The Bird Banding Laboratory (BBL) was established in 1920 under the United States Geological Society (also in conjunction with the Canadian wildlife Service). The purpose of this organization is to support the collection, archiving, management and dissemination of information from banded and marked birds in North America.
The general objectives of banding are to gather data on:
• migration patterns
• survivorship and life spans (66 yr old albatross)
• reproductive success
• behavior
• social structure
• diseases and toxicology
Bird banding studies may be species- specific (the study of a single species), or may involve a cross-section of species. Projects may be short-term (one breeding season) or continuous efforts over many years. Individual studies may be localized to one geographic area, or be continent-wide.
Since its inception, BBL has recorded the banding of over 64 million individuals, with data for each individual bird measured, recorded, and stored. This averages over 1.2 million individual birds being banded per year.
The North American Bird Banding Program (NABBP), also managed by the USGS, is responsible for many aspects of bird banding in the United States and Canada: it grants permits to bird banders, fills orders for bands of various sizes, collects data from banding stations, receives reports from people who have found birds carrying bands, and makes its database available to appropriate parties.
Individual persons interested in banding birds must be qualified and must be permitted. The North American Banding Council sets the protocol for qualification requirements. Training to be a certified bander is long and difficult. The program functions as an apprenticeship. The holder of a Master permit (Vernon Kleen) mentors individuals as they learn to follow protocol in capturing, handling, measuring, and banding birds, and as they become proficient at accurately identifying, sexing, and aging birds. Tony has a sub permit. Vern has 4 sub permits under him.
Tools of the trade
Mist nets are used to capture songbirds and small passerines. These fine nets are 12 meters long, and rest approximately 2 feet off the ground and extend to approximately 7 – 8 feet. Birds are caught in these almost-invisible nets and are safely held until a bander can retrieve them. Traps are typically used to capture hummingbirds.
Leg bands are ordered from NABBP and each contains a unique 9 digit number . There are 19 different sizes, and most are aluminum (steel is used for some of the larger birds).
The bible for banders is “Identification Guide to North American Birds”, by Peter Pyle. This highly-technical manual includes data for 395 species and 857 subspecies and will be found at every banding station.
Lincoln Land Association of Bird Banders
The Lincoln Land Association of Bird Banders was established in 2014. Nine members sit on the board. The objectives of this organization are:
1) to monitor resident and migratory bird populations
2) to provide educational opportunities and training for anyone interested in birds and the environment
LLABB participates in many Illinois Hummingbird festivals and various banding demonstrations. A primary function is to support the LLCC bird banding station.
Over 12 seasons, LLABB has banded 20,000+ birds of 122 species at the LLCC bird banding station. Banding takes place in two periods: 1) during the spring migration, from late March to late May 2) the fall migration, from late August to mid November. The station operates from sunrise until approximately 11 am, Monday through Saturday, during these two seasons. The station will occasionally shut down if high winds or steady rain necessitates. There have been 3,000+ visitors to the station over the years (and visitors are always welcomed).
A greater number of birds are banded during the fall season, as young birds have swelled the population. The spring season has averaged 1,365 individuals, with a fall average of 2,235. There are typically 25 – 30 species recorded during each of these seasons.
The seven most frequently-captured species include American goldfinch, Dark-eyed junco, White-throated sparrow, House finch, Yellow-rumped warbler, Chipping sparrow, and Swamp sparrow.
MAPS
Professor Rothering then discussed another banding program with which he is involved. He has participated in MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivor) for the last four years. This program is organized by the Institute for Bird Populations, in Point Reyes, California and is a continent-wide study on breeding bird demographics. Although the number of active bird banding stations varies, there have been as many as 1,200 operating in the U.S. > 2 million bird captures have been recorded. Tony’s MAP station is on CWLP land on the southeast part of Springfield. For this program, Tony and his crew band during the breeding season, according to a very strict protocol and schedule. Ten nets are used, sunrise until 6 hours later. Over four seasons, they have captured 591 birds of 36 species. Data collected includes age, sex, fat, molt and feather conditions, mass, and wing chord.
57% of the birds captured at the MAPS station are catbirds, cardinals and robins.

As Tony concluded his presentation, he encouraged the audience to “like” the Lincoln Land Association of Bird Banding page on Face Book, where photos and data of their banding activities are regularly posted.
He also encouraged everyone to use e bird, a field app administered by Cornell University. This program allows individuals –even amateurs such as most of us – to record their sightings. This information is invaluable in helping to compile national statistics on our birds and in developing strategies to ensure their survival.
Professor Rothering also asked us to plant native plants in our yards and on our properties! Provide food and water sources and mow fewer areas. Each backyard can be an invaluable resource for birds as they try to navigate through an ever-increasingly inhospitable world.
Tony also wanted us to know that if we would ever find a banded bird that we should report our finding. Go to reportabird.gov to report the band number. Contrary to the fears of some, there will be no penalties for reporting, but rather, individuals reporting a bird will be issued a certificate of appreciation.
Lastly, Professor Rothering invited any interested birders to sign up for his bird identification course offered at Lincoln Land Community College in the spring semester. This course is a hybrid of on-line lectures as well as weekly field trips. The course number is BIO 209. It is a really great class and all are encouraged to sign up.

Our next meeting will be held on October 18.
... See MoreSee Less

4 days ago

Springfield Audubon Society

Don’t forget about our bird walk and presentation at the Adams Wildlife Sanctuary on Thursday evening! Tony Rothering , biology professor at Lincoln Land Community College, will lead us on a bird walk at 6 pm. Fall migration is in full swing and the warblers are passing through. If you’ve never been on a guided bird walk, please bring a pair of binoculars (or borrow one of the pairs available at the Sanctuary) and follow along! You can be assured that you will learn a lot and will enjoy yourself.
Then at 7 pm, Professor Rothering will give a presentation on his bird banding activities. He will discuss the history, importance and processes of bird banding including discussions about the Lincoln Land Association of Bird Banders (LLABB), the LLCC Bird Banding Station, and MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship – a continent-wide breeding bird initiative).
I expect that Tony will also briefly discuss the course that he offers each spring at Lincoln Land on bird identification. This is a fantastic opportunity for our members and other area birders. The course has a didactic component, which is taught on-line, as well as a field study itinerary. Transportation is provided for day trips to Emiquon and to Grafton, and between these longer trips are weekly local trips, such as Lake Springfield, Carpenter Park, Centennial Park, and many others, during which Tony guides his students on bird walks and teaches basic field identification techniques. I took this course last year and so thoroughly enjoyed it that I am eager to audit the course and re-take it this spring! So for any birders out there who would like to gain some formal education on bird identification, and would like the opportunity to have first-hand field experiences, come and learn about this upcoming opportunity!
... See MoreSee Less

Don’t forget about our bird walk and presentation at the Adams Wildlife Sanctuary on Thursday evening!   Tony Rothering , biology professor at Lincoln Land Community College, will lead us on a bird walk at 6 pm.  Fall migration is in full swing and the warblers are passing through.  If you’ve never been on a guided bird walk, please bring a pair of binoculars (or borrow one of the pairs available at the Sanctuary) and follow along!  You can be assured that you will learn a lot and will enjoy yourself.  
Then at 7 pm, Professor Rothering will give a presentation on his bird banding activities.  He will discuss the history, importance and processes of bird banding including discussions about the Lincoln Land Association of Bird Banders (LLABB), the LLCC Bird Banding Station, and MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship – a continent-wide breeding bird initiative).
I expect that Tony will also briefly discuss the course that he offers each spring at Lincoln Land on bird identification.    This is a fantastic opportunity for our members and other area birders.  The course has a didactic component, which is taught on-line, as well as a field study itinerary.  Transportation is provided for day trips to Emiquon and to Grafton, and between these longer trips are weekly local trips, such as Lake Springfield, Carpenter Park, Centennial Park, and many others, during which Tony guides his students on bird walks and teaches basic field identification techniques.   I took this course last year and so thoroughly enjoyed it that I am eager to audit the course and re-take it this spring!  So for any birders out there who would like to gain some formal education on bird identification, and would like the opportunity to have first-hand field experiences, come and learn about this upcoming opportunity!Image attachmentImage attachment

2 weeks ago

Springfield Audubon Society

9 members of the Springfield Audubon Society(SAS) accompanied by Jo Fessett of Illinois Audubon toured Bremer Sanctuary on the morning of September 6th. They enjoyed a hike thru West Prairie down to Cress Creek and viewed the needed repair work on the pipeline trail. Then climbing aboard an awaiting tractor and wagon, they toured the remaining prairie via the bluebird trail. Lunch was enjoyed by all in the education barn followed by a question and answer session regarding our practices at the sanctuary. A highlight of their tour was seeing the recently cleared woodlands from invasive honeysuckle. This project was initiated by a grant from the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation. ... See MoreSee Less

Heck, yes, I'm gonna send a check. I'll support nature conservation with my dollars and my vote whenever I'm able. ... See MoreSee Less

Heck, yes, Im gonna send a check. Ill support nature conservation with my dollars and my vote whenever Im able.
Load more

UPCOMING EVENTS:

Adams Wildlife Workdays
Thursdays ~ 9am to 11am

Hosted by Friends of the Sangamon Valley

Work gloves and boots recommended, all other equipment provided.

544.2473 ~ Adams Wildlife Sanctuary

###

 

 

 

3rd Thursday Program ~ September 20th

Adams Wildlife Sanctuary

6 pm Bird Hike

7 pm Program

Tony Rothering (Lincoln Land Community College Biology Professor and licensed bird bander) will lead a bird hike at 6pm. At 7pm, Tony will present on the history, importance and processes of bird banding including discussions about the Lincoln Land Association of Bird Banders (LLABB), the LLCC Bird Banding Station, and MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship – a continent-wide breeding bird initiative). Tony does offer an Introduction to Bird Identification course each spring semester at LLCC.

###

Monitoring Owls and Nightjars in Illinois
Tuesday, September 25, 2018
7 p.m.
Lincoln Memorial Garden
Join us for a presentation by INHS avian ecologist Tara Beveroth on Project MOON (Monitoring of Owls and Nightjars), a volunteer-based program that occurs throughout the state annually from April to June. Learn how the data collected can provide additional insights into the life histories of Illinois owls and nightjars.
###

Save the Dates

~ Owl Prowl ~

Friday ~ October 26th ~ 6:30

Raptor Focus Series  ~ 3rd Thursday Program  

February 21st & March 21st

Prairie State Conservation Coalition (PSCC) is a non-profit organization created to assist conservation land trusts, land owners, and communities in their efforts to protect land and water resources in Illinois. This Hike App was created with the support of PSCC, the Donnelley Foundation, and the Grand Victoria Foundation to further enhance public awareness and foster community interactions with Illinois natural areas and open lands. With this App, land trust organizations in Illinois now have an outlet to provide interactive tours of their project sites. These tours are guided by GPS and conveniently available on your mobile devices. The Hike App leads you through an interpretive hike in a natural area of your choosing. Limited hikes are currently available; more hikes are coming soon. This app features the history of Adams Wildlife Sanctuary, as well as, detailed maps of the property.