Preventing Avian Extinctions: What Works with Dr. David Luther, January 11th

Photo: Cerulean Warbler by Matt Felperin

Thursday, January 11, 2024
7 – 8 pm
ASNV Members: $10
Non-members: $15
Register here.

Join Audubon Society of Northern Virginia and Dr. David Luther for a program on preventing avian extinctions. More species in the world are threatened with extinction today than at any other time in recent history. However, at the same time, a number of programs have made great strides in successfully conserving threatened species and preventing their extinctions. Dr. Luther will explore the state of birds globally, the threats they face, and what is working in the field of conservation biology to prevent the extinction of endangered bird species. The talk will focus on global and local examples of successful conservation efforts, his research on conserving endangered species in the United States and around the world, and future conservation opportunities.

David Luther is an Associate Professor in the Biology Department at George Mason University and a member of the ASNV board. He teaches courses on ornithology, community ecology, and animal behavior. His research applies principles from animal behavior and ecology to examine conservation biology problems. Current projects focus on how climate change and habitat loss are affecting birds in the Amazon as well as the mechanisms that make conservation actions succeed in preventing extinctions of threatened species.


Occoquan Tree Identification with Jim McGlone, November 18th

Photo: Occoquan Bay NWR, Rusty Moran

Saturday, November 18, 2023
1 – 3 pm
Occoquan Bay NWR Visitor Center
14050 Dawson Beach Road, Woodbridge, VA, 22191

Free, no registration required

Join Audubon Society of Northern Virginia for a walk through Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge to learn how to identify common native trees and how you can be a good park neighbor by planting your own native trees at home. You’ll also learn why trees are so important, both in parks and the areas surrounding parks.

This program is part of our Stretch Our Parks initiative, in partnership with the staff of Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge. Occoquan Bay National Wildlife Refuge was established in June 1998 to provide habitat for migratory birds and endangered species. The refuge’s diverse grassland, marsh, and forest habitats attract a variety of songbirds, raptors, and waterfowl that depend on the area for food, nesting sites, and a place to rest.

Jim, an urban forest conservationist and forester, recently retired from the Virginia Department of Forestry and served as founding Chapter Advisor and dendrology instructor for the Fairfax Master Naturalists.


Birds in Watercolor: Paint Step-by-Step with Ronna Fujisawa, November 30th

Image: Ronna Fujisawa

Thursday, November 30
7 PM – 8:30 PM
ASNV Members: $20
ASNV Non-members: $30
More information and registration here.

Celebrate the season and paint a watercolor of the adorable Tufted Titmouse. Birds are an excellent source of inspiration and a joy to paint. Join this live, online Audubon Society of Northern Virginia class to paint alongside Ronna Fujisawa, an experienced watercolor painter, art educator, and bird enthusiast. No prior watercolor experience is necessary for enjoying this tutorial.

Author Talk: “What an Owl Knows” with Jennifer Ackerman, October 19th

Image: Courtesy of the Audubon Society of Northern Virginia

Thursday, October 19, 2023
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Virtual, hosted by Audubon Society of Northern Virginia

Fee: Members $25 (Non-members$350

Register here.

For millennia, owls have captivated and intrigued us. With their forward gaze and quiet flight, owls are often a symbol of wisdom, knowledge, and foresight. But what does an owl really know? And what do we really know about owls? Though our fascination goes back centuries, scientists only have recently begun to understand in detail the complex nature of these extraordinary birds.

Join Jennifer Ackerman, author of The Genius of Birds, for an author talk about her latest book, in which she illuminates the rich biology and natural history of owls and reveals remarkable new scientific discoveries about their brains and behavior. What an Owl Knows is a fascinating exploration of owls across the globe and through human history, including an account of their astonishing hunting skills, communication, and sensory prowess.

Jennifer Ackerman has been writing about science and nature for almost three decades. Her New York Times bestseller, The Genius of Birds, has been translated into 25 languages and was named one of the best nonfiction books of 2016 by The Wall Street Journal, a Best Science Book by National Public Radio’s “Science Friday”, and a Nature Book of the Year by the London Sunday Times. Her other books include Birds by the Shore: Observing the Natural Life of the Atlantic Coast (2019 reissue by Penguin Press of her first book, Notes from the Shore), Sex Sleep Eat Drink Dream: A Day in the Life of Your Body, and Chance in the House of Fate: A Natural History of Heredity. Ackerman’s articles and essays have appeared in National Geographic, The New York Times Magazine, Scientific American, and many other publications. She is the recipient of numerous awards and fellowships, including a National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship in Nonfiction, a Bunting Fellowship, and a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

The “Birdman” Behind the Migratory Bird Treaty Act with Will McLean Greely, November 2nd

Image courtesy of Will McLean Greely

Thursday, November 2, 2023
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Virtual Meeting

Registration is required.

Fee: ASNV Members, $10; ASNV Non-members, $15

Join the Audubon Society of Northern Virginia (ASNV) for an author event and learn about the man behind the ground-breaking, 1918 Migratory Bird Treaty Act. It’s one of the country’s first and most important conservation laws and has saved billions of birds.

Will McLean Greeley will provide an overview of his new biography, A Connecticut Yankee Goes to Washington: Senator George P. McLean, Birdman of the Senate. This is the story of how Connecticut’s George P. McLean helped establish lasting legal protections for birds that is still in effect today. Greeley, McLean’s great-great-nephew, puts McLean’s victory for birds in the context of his distinguished forty-five-year career marked by many acts of reform during a time of widespread corruption and political instability.

Will McLean Greeley grew up in western Michigan with a passion for American history, politics, and birds. He earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Michigan, followed by a master’s degree in archives administration. After retiring from a thirty-five-year career in government and corporate market research, he embarked on a three-year journey of research and writing to produce the story of his great-great-uncle George P. McLean and his legacy. Greeley, married and the father of two sons, and twice a grandfather, lives in Midland, Michigan. A Connecticut Yankee Goes to Washington is his first book.

FREE Bird Feeding Webinar on November 29th

Photo: ASNV, Northern Cardinal by Alexis Hayes

Wednesday, November 29, 2023
7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Virtual, hosted by Audubon Society of Northern Virginia

Fee: FREE, but registration is required

Register here.

Greg Butcher will offer tips about increasing the number and variety of birds that visit your backyard this winter. In addition, he will introduce you to Project FeederWatch, a program of the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology that allows you and your family to contribute to science. After the presentation they will test your backyard bird identification skills with a Kahoot!

Greg Butcher is a retired Ph.D. ornithologist and former ASNV board member. In addition to the U.S. Forest Service, Greg has worked for the National Audubon Society, American Birding Association, Partners in Flight, Birder’s World magazine, and Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Greg is a lively and informative public speaker and interpreter for bird conservation and ecology worldwide.

ASNV Presents Fall Butterfly Identification with Larry Meade, September 5th

Photo By David Illig, Variegated Fritillary

Click here for registration information.

The sight of butterflies fluttering around on a warm day is one of the most iconic signs of summer, but they can still be found well into the fall months. These beautiful insects usually live for only a few weeks as adults, but they make quite an impression while they are in their full glory. There is a large variety of butterfly species in our area. Larry Meade will walk participants through the common species and help us differentiate some of the trickier look-a-like species.

Participants are encouraged to register for the North American Butterfly Association (NABA) Count to be held on September 10, 2023.

A good way to prepare this program is to review Butterflies of the Mid-Atlantic, a Field Guide, by Robert Blakney and Judy Gallagher. Judy Gallagher is a member of the ASNV Board, and the field guide is available for purchase on the ASNV website.

Larry Meade is president of the Northern Virginia Bird Club and a member of the ASNV Adult Education Committee. He is a frequent bird walk leader and has been involved in numerous Audubon Christmas Bird Counts and North America Butterfly Association (NABA) Butterfly Counts. He is the compiler of the Alexandria Circle NABA Butterfly Count.

This program is FREE for members of Audubon Society of Northern Virginia and members of the Northern Virginia Bird Club.


Audubon Afternoon In-Person with Guest Speaker Marci Eggers, March 12th

Sun, March 12, 2023
2:30 – 4:00 PM

Registration is requested. This will be a hybrid event. If you choose to attend via Zoom, please select a Virtual Ticket.

The Audubon Afternoon is free.

11100 Wildlife Center
11100 Wildlife Center Drive
Reston, VA 20190



Join the ASNV on Sunday afternoon for their semi-annual live Audubon Afternoon at the National Wildlife Federation, 11100 Wildlife Center Drive in Reston.

They gather informally starting at 2:30 so you have an opportunity to reconnect with everyone. We welcome any food and drink you would like to share with everyone during the informal portion of the program. At 3 PM, they will have a presentation by Marci Eggers, “Restoring Migratory Bird Wintering Habitat in Latin America and the Caribbean.” Marci Eggers is the Director of Migratory Bird Habitats in Latin America and the Caribbean for the American Bird Conservancy (ABC). In this role, she oversees ABC’s efforts to protect and restore priority landscapes that migratory birds depend on in their non-breeding grounds. ABC works in collaboration with ranchers, farmers, and local communities that depend on the health of the natural environment for their livelihoods. ABC also works on innovative finance solutions to advance migratory bird conservation.

The Audubon Afternoon is free, and everyone is welcome to attend.

This will be a hybrid event. If you choose to attend via Zoom, please select a Virtual Ticket. If you plan to attend in person, please select an In-person Ticket. This will help plans to accommodate everyone. Everyone registering, whether for In-person or Virtual Tickets, will get the Zoom information via email in case plans to attend in person change.

Registration is requested, so they have an idea of how many people will attend but is not required unless you plan to attend via Zoom. You are welcome to bring friends or family who did not register, or just show up!

Spring Ornithology Course with Dr. Chris Haney, Begins March 27th — Canceled

Photo: Courtesy of Chris Haney

Dates: March 27, 29; April 3, 5, 17, 19, 24, 26; May 1, 3, 8, 10,
Time: 7:00 – 8:00 PM
Where: Virtual
Members:  $150
Non-Members:  $175

Click here for Registration and additional details.

This 12-part online course is designed and presented at an introductory, university level, with two one-hour sessions per week over 6 weeks.

The course will cover:

  • Bird song
  • Avian diet and foraging
  • Mate selection and social behaviors
  • Breeding biology (incubation, chick-rearing, postnatal care)
  • Bird populations
  • Avian conservation and sustainable management

Instructional presentations will include PowerPoint slides, auditory or video supplements, and some in-class participatory exercises. Each Zoom session will be made available to all participants by the following day.

This course will be fully virtual. Participants are encouraged to attend at least 3 group bird walks during the 6-week period as homework. Residents of Northern Virginia are encouraged to participate in walks organized by Audubon Society of Northern Virginia or the Northern Virginia Bird Club.

Instructor: Dr. Chris Haney’s expertise in ornithology includes marine science, climate change, wildlife biology, ecosystem management, and conservation policy. His projects and scholarly work have taken him to Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Jamaica, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Cuba, the Bahamas, Lesser Antilles, several countries of southern Africa, and the former Soviet Union. He has authored over 80 peer-reviewed journal articles, book chapters, and technical notes, over 150 reports, abstracts, testimony, blog communications, and other public documents, and delivered more than 150 invited seminar, conference, and workshop presentations. Chris’s knowledge and enthusiasm in the classroom consistently inspire his students!

Ducks and Waterfowl Identification with Greg Butcher, February 2nd

Photo: FMN Ana Ka’ahanui

Thursday, February 2, 2023
7 – 8:30 pm
$10 ASNV members/$15 Nonmembers

Register here.

Join Greg Butcher, Audubon Society of Northern Virginia board member and recently retired migratory species coordinator for the U.S. Forest Service International Programs, for an introduction to waterfowl identification. Get to know many of the species that winter in the open waters of our region. You’ll learn how to tell a Bufflehead from a Hooded Merganser, and, you’ll learn the features (and hear the call) of the beautiful Tundra Swans that winter in Northern Virginia. Strategies will include identification by shape and color pattern. After the presentation, test your identification skills with a Kahoot!

This event will be helpful for those participating in the Winter Waterfowl Count on Feb 11-12 but is open to anyone who would like to know how to identify winter waterfowl!

There is an optional field trip for a limited number of participants, but you are encouraged to do your own independent field trips to see winter waterfowl! Some good locations to see waterfowl in NoVa are Huntley Meadows, Dyke Marsh and Mason Neck State Park.