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Bolivia and Argentina: Diversity and Rare Birds. Zoom Evening Meeting Reminder, Tuesday, 4 Oct, 7:30 p.m.

September 30, 2022

You are all invited to the next ZOOM meeting
of Santa Monica Bay Audubon Society

Many-colored Rush-Tyrant. One of the 400+ tyrant flycatchers.
On October 4, 2022 at 7:30 pm, Join the Zoom Presentation by CLICKING HERE

Bolivia and Argentina: Diversity and Rare Birds, with John Sterling.
Zoom Evening Meeting, Tuesday, 4 October, 7:30 p.m.

Zoom waiting room opens 7:15 p.m.

John will take you on a virtual tour of the diverse landscapes, habitats and birds (and mammals) of these two amazing countries. Bolivia has the highest species list for a landlocked country. Argentina is huge and stretches from sub-Antartica to tropical rainforests to high elevation Andes. John lead tours to both countries this summer and photographed many rare and endangered birds along with endemic birds to the countries and regions.

John Sterling has been a hard core birder in California since he was shown a Pileated Woodpecker in 5th grade camp in 1971.  He is a professional ornithologist and has worked for the Smithsonian Institution, US Forest Service research stations, HT Harvey & Associates, Arizona and Oregon state universities among other organizations since 1981.  John has traveled extensively throughout California learning about local bird distribution and is an authority on that state’s avifauna. In 2015 he set the California’s new big year record with 501 species and has many big day records as well. He has traveled internationally as a guide and ornithologist for many institutions including projects as a Smithsonian ornithologist to Mexico, Ecuador, Peru, The Philippines, Sumatra, Canada and Russia. John currently has his own company, Sterling Wildlife Biology (www.sterlingbirds.com),  specializing in tours, birding classes, research and environmental consulting for The Nature Conservancy, the Kern Water Bank, the California Rice Commission, the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, National Audubon’s International Alliance Program, CA Dept. of Water Resources among other organizations.

Red-fronted Macaw in Bolivia.
On October 4, 2022 at 7:30 pm, Join the Zoom Presentation by CLICKING HERE

(If this button isn’t working for you, see detailed zoom invitation below.)


Meeting ID: 820 4495 3823
Passcode: 105537

One tap mobile:
+16699009128,,82044953823#,,,,*105537# US (San Jose)
+16694449171,,82044953823#,,,,*105537# US

Dial by your location
+1 669 900 9128 US (San Jose)
+1 669 444 9171 US
+1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
+1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
+1 719 359 4580 US
+1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
+1 309 205 3325 US
+1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
+1 386 347 5053 US
+1 564 217 2000 US
+1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
+1 646 931 3860 US

Meeting ID: 820 4495 3823
Passcode: 105537
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kmxPuEaWd

Bolivia and Argentina: Diversity and Rare Birds. Zoom Evening Meeting, Tuesday, 4 Oct, 7:30 p.m.

September 23, 2022

You are all invited to the next ZOOM meeting
of Santa Monica Bay Audubon Society

Many-colored Rush-Tyrant. One of the 400+ tyrant flycatchers.
On October 4, 2022 at 7:30 pm, Join the Zoom Presentation by CLICKING HERE

Bolivia and Argentina: Diversity and Rare Birds, with John Sterling.
Zoom Evening Meeting, Tuesday, 4 October, 7:30 p.m.

Zoom waiting room opens 7:15 p.m.

John will take you on a virtual tour of the diverse landscapes, habitats and birds (and mammals) of these two amazing countries. Bolivia has the highest species list for a landlocked country. Argentina is huge and stretches from sub-Antartica to tropical rainforests to high elevation Andes. John lead tours to both countries this summer and photographed many rare and endangered birds along with endemic birds to the countries and regions.

John Sterling has been a hard core birder in California since he was shown a Pileated Woodpecker in 5th grade camp in 1971.  He is a professional ornithologist and has worked for the Smithsonian Institution, US Forest Service research stations, HT Harvey & Associates, Arizona and Oregon state universities among other organizations since 1981.  John has traveled extensively throughout California learning about local bird distribution and is an authority on that state’s avifauna. In 2015 he set the California’s new big year record with 501 species and has many big day records as well. He has traveled internationally as a guide and ornithologist for many institutions including projects as a Smithsonian ornithologist to Mexico, Ecuador, Peru, The Philippines, Sumatra, Canada and Russia. John currently has his own company, Sterling Wildlife Biology (www.sterlingbirds.com),  specializing in tours, birding classes, research and environmental consulting for The Nature Conservancy, the Kern Water Bank, the California Rice Commission, the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, National Audubon’s International Alliance Program, CA Dept. of Water Resources among other organizations.

Red-fronted Macaw in Bolivia.
On October 4, 2022 at 7:30 pm, Join the Zoom Presentation by CLICKING HERE

(If this button isn’t working for you, see detailed zoom invitation below.)


Meeting ID: 820 4495 3823
Passcode: 105537

One tap mobile:
+16699009128,,82044953823#,,,,*105537# US (San Jose)
+16694449171,,82044953823#,,,,*105537# US

Dial by your location
+1 669 900 9128 US (San Jose)
+1 669 444 9171 US
+1 253 215 8782 US (Tacoma)
+1 346 248 7799 US (Houston)
+1 719 359 4580 US
+1 301 715 8592 US (Washington DC)
+1 309 205 3325 US
+1 312 626 6799 US (Chicago)
+1 386 347 5053 US
+1 564 217 2000 US
+1 646 558 8656 US (New York)
+1 646 931 3860 US

Meeting ID: 820 4495 3823
Passcode: 105537
Find your local number: https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kmxPuEaWd

Malibu Lagoon trip is a go: Sunday, 25 Sept. 2022

September 23, 2022

Link to prior announcement here.

We still have a few spaces open. Send your reservation to Chuck: click here.

Suggestions:

  • Bring your mask. You may want to wear it at least during the first 30-45 minutes when the group is more compact and crowded.
  • If you feel sick, stay home and isolate.
  • If you have been around anyone who has tested positive for Covid-19, or who is experiencing Covid-19 symptoms, please be considerate of others, and stay home.
  • Nationwide from Covid, we still have: Per day 66,000 cases & 400 deaths; 75% of deaths are aged 65+, 18% aged 50-64.

Weather predictions: 82°F at noon per NOAA, 50-60% humidity, no cloud cover
High tide of 5.01 ft. is at 9:49 am!

To reiterate a few rules:

  • If I checked your Covid card last month, I won’t check it again.
  • For all others, bring your covid vax card. Yes, I have a list.
  • Trip has a few openings. Send me an email if you want to be on it.
  • Email to Chuck: misclists@verizon.net.
  • Masks are not required but are appreciated.
  • Temperature likely to be in mid-to-high 70’s.
  • It will be, as one birder succinctly commented in 1452: “A courerete of cootys!” 

The prior rules, still in force

  • Registration required, max. 30 people. No drop-ins, please.
  • Bring your Covid-19 Vaccination Record Card and a photo ID card. They will be checked. If you do not have two shots and a booster (preferably three boosters) recorded on your card, you must wear a mask while you are with the group.
  • If we checked your Covid card last month, we won’t check it this month.
  • Bring your own binoculars.
  • All Field Trips are designed to maximize your safety, while also enjoying birds. CDC Guidelines are followed. Participants are encouraged to observe safe distancing, and face coverings are required for those who are not fully vaccinated (2 shots + booster) for Covid-19.
  • Participation in social activities, such as field trips, comes with an inherent risk of exposure to infectious disease. Prospective participants should self-evaluate or discuss with their doctor if their participation merits this risk. If you’re sick or experiencing any symptoms that indicate you might be sick, STAY HOME.
  • The 10am Children & Parents Walk is NOT reinstated. Not yet, anyway.
  • For general questions or help registering, contact Chuck: misclists@verizon.net
  • Additional information on our permanent Covid-19 blog page:

Canada Goose keeps a steely eye on that Killdeer, a notorious sneak. (R. Juncosa 5-26-19)

How to keep your hummingbird feeder pest-free | National Audubon Society

September 21, 2022

[Posted by Chuck Almdale]

A Ruby-throat at the feeding trough. That yellow thing is a bee/oriole guard.
Photo: Bill Gordon/Great Backyard Bird Count

Anyone who’s ever hung a hummingbird feeder in their yard knows that other creatures like it too. Include in that assortment of interlopers: bees, ants and other insects; bears; orioles, chickadees and other birds. And squirrels. Not too many people complain about the orioles, but bears and bees can be a different matter.

Here’s a few hints from the Audubon Society, your source for all things birdwise for the past 120 years.

Bears: Take any and all feeders down, clean them up and store them inside until the bears stop coming by. Clean up your yard, especially any smelly garbage: omnivorous bears eat almost anything, including canned food. When you think it’s safe, put the feeders out again; if they return, put them inside. Repeat as necessary.

Insects: Bees and ants are the main problems. Bees are beneficial insects and fun to have around, but some (mostly honeybees) do sting and some people have potentially lethal reactions to bee venom. (The solitary bees in our yard sometimes smother our springtime blooming native plants yet they’ve never been aggressive towards me. Wasps, hornets & honeybees will and have attacked me.)

  • First, second and third, Clean, clean, clean: Keep the outside of the feeder free from accumulating sugar water. If the feeder bounces around in the wind the nectar will slosh and dribble out; figure out some other way or place to hang it.
  • Bee guards (round plastic mesh thingies), if kept clean, keep the bees out. They can also keep orioles out.
  • Attachable ant moats (or ant guards) can be purchased and added. Some feeders come with them built in. They purportedly drown ants trying to climb down onto them. (After reading exciting stories about army ants in Africa crossing streams and canals and devouring entire herds of cattle, and seeing ant swarms in the Amazon rainforest crossing small rivulets on bridges built of their own bodies, I have to wonder about the efficacy of such a moat. But there they are if you want one.)

Squirrels: How would I know, and the NAS article doesn’t mention them either. As far as I can see, they can figure, jump and crawl their way past any defense you can concoct. The true rulers of the world. If you think I exaggerate, read this (and watch the video).

Other Birds: Oh, let them come. They’re fun too.

If you don’t take my word for all this, check out the NAS article upon which this is based.
There are three (or more!) very interesting articles on hummingbirds at the bottom of the NAS article:
The Origins of Hummingbirds are Still a Major Mystery
How to Make Hummingbird Nectar
Hummingbird Gorgets: Jewels of the Sky

Are you interested? – Malibu Lagoon Children and Parents Walk 10:00 a.m., 4th Sunday every month

September 13, 2022

Showy Snowy Egret (R. Juncosa 11-25-18)

February 2020 was the last time we ran our parents & kids walk.
Because of Covid-19, of course. We’re ready to run them again, just as before, but we want to know if there’s any interest. This is a solicitation for responses from our members and other potential attendees. Open to all, no charge. The trips aren’t just for the kids. They’re a chance for parents of young children to get out into the sunshine and fresh air, have some fun looking at the birds and know that their kids won’t be knocking over any lamps.

Here’s the traditional announcement for these walks. Please let us know if you’re interested. You can reply to this blog, and your comments will post, or you can email me.

Children and Parents Walk 10:00 a.m., 4th Sunday of every month. 
One hour session, meeting at the metal-shaded viewing area between parking lot and channel.  We start at 10:00 for a shorter walk and to allow time for families to get it together on a sleepy Sunday morning.  Our leaders are experienced with kids so please bring them to the beach!  We have an ample supply of binoculars that children can use without striking terror into their parents.  We want to see families enjoying nature. (If you have a Scout Troop or other group of more than seven people, you must call Jean (310-472-7209) to make sure we have enough binoculars and docents.)

Sanderling flock on end of beach spit (R. Juncosa 11-25-18)

Map to Meeting Place
Directions: Malibu Lagoon is at the intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and Cross Creek Road, west of Malibu Pier and the bridge.  Look around for people wearing binoculars.
Parking: Parking machine recently installed in the lagoon lot: 1 hr $3; 2 hrs $6; 3 hrs $9, all day $12 ($11 seniors); credit cards accepted. Annual passes accepted. You may also park (read the signs carefully) either along PCH west of Cross Creek Road, on Cross Creek Road, or on Civic Center Way north (inland) of the shopping center.  Lagoon parking in shopping center lots is not permitted.

[Written & posted by Chuck Almdale]

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