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Youth Education Mini-Grants

The Audubon Society of Northern Virginia is pleased to announce the 2020 youth education mini-grant program. This program aims to help teachers, schools, and non-profit organizations educate youth about birds and the environment. ASNV anticipates awarding three mini-grants, up to $500 each. Applications will be available in February 2020 and due March 15, 2020. Please contact youtheducation@audubonva.org with questions.

Sign Up for the 38th Annual Manassas-Bull Run Christmas Bird Count, Dec. 15th

Audubon Society of Northern Virginia (ASNV) will host the Manassas-Bull Run Christmas Bird Count (CBC) on Sunday, 15 December 2019. The center of the 15-mile diameter count circle is near the intersection of Routes 28 & 29 in Centreville. Birders of all skill levels are needed. A complimentary hot lunch will be available to participants.

If you participated last year, your sector or route leader should be in touch soon. If you don’t hear from anyone, or if you’d like to be in a different sector, contact Phil Silas at epsdcva@aol.com.

ASNV will also be offering an opportunity for feeder watchers. If you or someone you know lives within the count circle and cannot go out in the field, he or she can observe from inside, counting the birds that come to a feeder or yard on December 15 as an alternate way to participate.

If you are new to the CBC, signing up is easy! Just contact Phil Silas with your phone, email, and birder level (B=Beginner, I=Intermediate, E=Expert), and any notes or comments.

Please see the related post on training for this bird count which will take place on November 24th.

ASNV Accepting Applications Now for Educator Scholarship, deadline extended to March 1, 2020

Each summer Audubon Society of Northern Virginia offers a full scholarship and transportation to “Sharing Nature: An Educator’s Week” at National Audubon Society’s Hog Island Camp in Maine. Next year’s session is July 12-17, 2020 and will feature workshops on educational techniques, a boat trip to the restored Atlantic Puffin and Tern colony on Eastern Egg Rock, intertidal explorations, and hiking through Hog Island’s unspoiled spruce-fir forest.

Applicants must be a public classroom teacher, specialist or school administrator in the ASNV chapter territory. Counties: Arlington, Fairfax, Loudoun, Prince William, and Stafford. Independent cities: Alexandria, Falls Church, Fredericksburg, Manassas, and Manassas Park.

Application Deadline: March 1, 2020

Scholarship Announcement: March 16, 2020

Link to scholarship application: http://audubonva.org/hog-island-scholarship

Questions: info@audubonva.org. For further information about this session at Hog Island, visit https://hogisland.audubon.org/sharing-nature-educator-s-week.

Project FeederWatch Workshop, Nov. 9th

National Wildlife Federation
11100 Wildlife Center Drive, Reston 20190
Saturday, 9 November 2019
9 – 11 am

Project FeederWatch is the easiest citizen science you will ever do! From the comfort of your home, you simply count the winter birds that visit your feeders and report your data to Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

This FREE workshop will cover a bit of the history of Project FeederWatch, its purpose, tips for identifying birds, and the protocols to be followed while counting. They’ll spend some time practicing with the birds at the Audubon Society of Northern Virginia feeders. Light refreshments will be served.

Instructor: Carol Hadlock, volunteer extraordinaire and pioneer with the Audubon at Home program, will instruct this workshop.

Although the workshop is FREE, registration is required.

Birding and binocular fundamentals, Aug. 10th

LL Bean – Tysons Corner Mall
8095 Tysons Corner Center, McLean, VA 22102
Saturday, 10 August 2019
10 – 11 am

Birding is one of the fastest growing hobbies around and a great addition to any outdoor activity. It’s a wonderful way to connect to nature and fun for the whole family. Join Audubon Society of Northern Virginia’s good friend Larry Meade at LL Bean for a FREE one-hour clinic on birding and binocular fundamentals. Questions? Please contact the store at (888) 552-9876.

Chesapeake Bay Ecology trip, August 17-18, 2019

Calvert County, MD
Saturday, August 17, 9:30 a.m.
Sunday, August 18, 11:00 a.m.

Fee: $95 Audubon Society of Northern Virginia members, $115 non-members, includes guided tour of Battle Creek Cypress Swamp, lunch on Saturday, admission at the Calvert Marine Museum, and a two-hour private charter on the Dee of St. Mary’s.

Group Limit: 15 participants.

The group will explore Calvert County, MD. They’ll meet at 9:30 a.m. at Battle Creek Cypress Swamp, where they’ll explore one of the northernmost naturally occurring bald cypress stands in North America. Then they’ll head to Solomon’s Island for a guided tour of the Calvert Marine Museum and private charter on the Dee of St. Mary’s, one of the few remaining skipjacks on the Chesapeake Bay. We finish our visit with an early Sunday morning visit to Calvert Cliffs State Park (state park fee $7/car), the site of astonishing quantities of prehistoric marine fossils. Although Calvert County is close by, it still seems remote and is a treasure to visit.

The Chesapeake Bay provides the ecological, cultural and historic foundation of our region. To understand the bay, its seasonal narration, complex history, and stewardship needs each of us should be grounded in this place. For over 150 years, our stewardship of the bay region has been disrespectful to the complex natural systems. Water quality, indigenous species, and even people living around the bay have suffered from the impacts of mistreatment. With increased public awareness, public policy has slowly changed, and some progress has been made. Join Dr. Tom Wood on this experiential learning weekend to explore this national treasure.

Dr. Wood is an Associate Professor of Integrative and Interdisciplinary Studies in the School of Integrative Studies at George Mason University. He conducted his doctoral research at the Smithsonian and helped create the Smithsonian-Mason Semester and directed the development of Mason’s joint program with the Smithsonian Conservation Biology Institute.

Hotel Reservations: A block of rooms has been reserved at the Holiday Inn Solomon’s Conference Center and Marina at a rate of $109 (not included with fee.) Please make your reservation no later than July 26. Group rate code will be included in the confirmation email sent from EventBee.

Register here.

Raptors of the East Coast Region presentation Sept. 26th

National Wildlife Federation
11100 Wildlife Center Drive, Reston 20190
Thursday, 26 September 2019
7 – 9 pm

Field Trip:
Waggoner’s Gap (At top of Kittatinny Ridge, near Carlisle, PA)
Saturday, 28 September 28 2019
9:30 a.m.

Fee: $50 ASNV members, $60 non-members

Join the Audubon Society of Northern Virginia for Stacia Novy’s presentation on birds-of-prey. She will discuss flight characteristics, identification and migration patterns, focusing on raptor species of the East Coast region. The presentation will be followed by a field trip for a day of hawk watching. You’ll apply knowledge learned in the workshop by observing kettles of Broad-winged Hawks, falcons, and other migrant raptors making their way south for the winter.

Stacia Novy has been involved with wildlife conservation projects for over 30 years, specializing in birds. She is on the Board of Directors for Save the Prairie Society, an organization that saved Wolf Road Prairie Nature Preserve from urban development in Westchester, Illinois. She has conducted avian surveys for Wolf Road Prairie, the Audubon Center at Riverlands, Missouri, and the USDA Henry White Experimental Farm. She collected nesting data on Elf Owls, Gilded Flickers, and Yellow-billed Cuckoos for Tucson Audubon Society and Sonoran Audubon Society to establish Important Bird Areas (IBAs) for those species in Arizona. Stacia has also worked with Laguna Atascosa National Wildlife Refuge biologists to band birds, radio-track ocelots, and conduct nocturnal surveys of mammals. In Texas and Belize, she assisted in releasing endangered Aplomado Falcons and Orange-breasted Falcons for The Peregrine Fund.

Register here.

Marine birds and mammals of the Southeastern United States pelagic trip, July 6th

Outer Banks, NC
Saturday, 6 July 2019
All day
Fee: $175 (includes gratuity, participants are responsible for accommodation)

In an earlier post, Audubon Society of Northern Virginia advertised a two-part workshop on marine birds and mammals of the Southeastern United States.  There is no requirement to take these workshops to attend the field trip, however registrants for the class have priority to register for it.  The trip will depart from Hatteras Village on the Outer Banks, North Carolina.  There is no limit on registrations for the workshop but the pelagic trip is limited to the capacity of the boat (19 people).  Register for the field trip.

Apply for a Conservation Grant, Deadline May 10th

Do you have a great idea for how to improve habitat for birds and other wildlife, but don’t have the funds to do it? Audubon Society of Northern Virginia has funds available that can help your idea come true. They have budgeted $3,300 for conservation grants for this year, and applicants may apply for all or any part of the available funds. We are looking for applications from individuals, non-profit organizations, and public schools. Projects submitted by individuals should have a connection to public or non-profit lands.

Click here for more information and application.

Two-part workshop on Marine Birds and Mammals of the Southeastern U.S., 4 & 11 June

National Wildlife Federation
11100 Wildlife Center Drive, Reston, VA 20190
Tuesday, 4 June 2019 and Tuesday, 11 June 2019
7-9 pm
Field trip : 6 July 2019, all day, Outer Banks, NC

Marine birds have feathers, and marine mammals breathe air. But in almost every other way, these ocean denizens bear almost no resemblance at all to their counterparts on land. This workshop introduces participants to the identification, foraging strategies, behavior, and nesting/breeding ecology of marine birds and mammals typical of the southeastern Atlantic and Gulf coasts of the United States. Join Dr. Chris Haney, founder of Terra Mar Applied Sciences, for this two-part classroom instruction and pelagic field trip. Register here.

Cost: Members $100, Non-members $140

Field trip fee: $175 (includes gratuity; participants are responsible for accommodations)