Hurricane Irma has caused considerable damage to Highlands County. We are hoping that everyone is managing the best they can. Our scheduled meeting for September has been cancelled because there isn't electricity in much of Lake Placid, Avon Park, and Sebring. Check our calendar for the next meeting. Remember it is the third Tuesday of each month with covered dish starting at 6:30. We all hope to see you there.
Cancelled September ProgramCancelled
Tuesday, September 19 "Bad Policies for Lake Istokpoga" Dr. John Carson, Organic Chemist
Tuesday, October 17 "Audubon Ecology Camp" Ms. Coretta Pifer and Ms. Sally Stahl
Tuesday, November 21 "Prehistoric Florida"" Mr. Butch Wilson, Curator Clewiston Museum
Thursday, December 7 "Christmas Party" Cowpokes Watering Hole, Sebring 6:00 PM Dinner - Reservations and information call Roberta 863-599-0124 Bring donation for Humane Society.
Tuesday, January 16 "Troubled Waters" Mr. John Nelson, President, Martin County Audubon and Videographer Extraordinaire
Tuesday, February 20 " Gopher Tortoise Relocation" Ms. Linda McCarthy, Senior Ecologist, Lykes Brothers
Tuesday, March 20 "Yukon Territory" Mr. Bill Parken, FWC Ridge Ranger Coordinator
Tuesday, April 17 - Annual Meeting "Hendry County Birding Hotspots" Ms. Margaret England, Hendry/Glades County Audubon
Saturday, May 19 !2:00 Noon, "PROGRAM TBA" Get-Together Bring Lunch. Held at the Sebring Christian Church Fellowship Hall 4514 Hammock Road, Sebring
Please join us for an event!
Highlands County Audubon meetings are held the Third Tuesday of the Month September through April except for December when a special holiday party is held plus a special get-together in May.
Join The Great Backyard Bird Count –
Friday , Saturday, Sunday, Monday February 16, 17, 18, 19, 2018
Be a citizen scientist and count birds wherever you like to watch, one or more days from February 16-19. Spend at least 15 minutes at a location. Although many people participate by watching at one location, data is also welcome from anywhere. Each time you enter a checklist on www.ebird.com, you’ll be asked what kind of count you did, your start time, how much time you spent counting birds, and how many people contributed to the checklist. Information you provide can be the first sign that individual species may be increasing or declining from year to year. Data gathered over many years help highlight how a species’ range may be expanding or shrinking. A big change, noted consistently over a period of years, is an indication that something is happening in the environment that is affecting the birds and should be followed up on. GBBC information also allows researchers to look at what kinds of birds inhabit different areas, such as cities versus suburbs. Of the 4,004 species reported, Mexico tops the list with "This count is so fun because anyone can take part -- we all learn and watch birds together -- whether you are an expert, novice, or feeder watcher. I like to invite new birders to join in and share the experience. Get involved, invite your friends, and see how your favorite spot stacks up."
Gary Langham, Chief Scientist states that bird populations are always shifting and changing. Perhaps one of the most unusual avian events of the winter of 2012-13 was a tremendous movement of Razorbills far south of their normal range. Razorbills are relatives of puffins breeding on cliffs along both the North American and European sides of the North Atlantic. Their normal distribution in the nonbreeding season is at sea off the coasts of Europe, Iceland, Greenland, and the Atlantic Provinces and north-eastern United States, rarely wandering farther south than Cape Hatteras, North Carolina. Their exact wintering areas vary from year to year, depending upon the distributions of the ocean food resources upon which they feed. Prior to this winter there were only 14 records of Razorbill for Florida, mostly of single birds. Earlier this winter, to the excitement of birders, hundreds of Razorbills were seen off the Atlantic Coast of Florida and GBBC participants documented birds that had rounded the southern tip of Florida and others in the Gulf of Mexico. Why did Razorbills move so far from their normal range this winter? It probably had to do with a drop in food resources. Sea-surface temperatures were unusually warm off the mid-Atlantic region this winter, and that change may have greatly reduced the availability of prey, causing Razorbills to move farther southward in larger numbers than ever recorded before. Mexico reported 645 species, followed by the United States with 638 (reflecting the high level of participation). India follows with 544 species, then Costa Rica with 508. The top species being reported on Checklists were: Northern Cardinal (46,991), Dark-eyed Junco, Mourning Dove (41,384), Downy Woodpecker, House Finch, American Crow (31,509), Black-capped Chickadee, Blue Jay (30,050), American Goldfinch (30,011), and Tufted Titmouse (29,800). Many thanks to all in Highlands Country who contributed last year.
This year, the reports will be entered at http://www.ebird.com/ For information and instructions go to http://www.birdsource.org/ If you do not have access to a computer and need someone to help, call Helen 269-932-8934
* * * * *
Tell your tales of great birding at our meetings, write an article and/or submit a photo for our Sightings! newsletter.
Events to Remember
Water for Florida's Future
Audubon Assembly 2017
Save the Date!
Friday, October 20 and Saturday, October 21
Location: World Golf Village Renaissance St. Augustine, Florida
The Audubon Assembly is Florida's premiere conservation event. Join friends - old and new - for two days of informative workshops, exciting guest speakers, and unforgettable field trips.
Staff and volunteers are hard at work preparing a one-of-a-kind experience for this year's gathering. Please stay tuned for more information. We have some big announcements to make and will fill you in on all the juicy details as soon as we are able.
Trust us, you won't want to miss this year's Assembly. Mark October 20-21 on your calendars right now.
See you in October!
Saturday November 4, 2017
Sebring Fine Arts and Crafts Festival booth on the Circle Historic Sebring
Saturday November 11, 2017
CCC Festival at Highlands Hammock State Park
Saturday, December 30, 2017
Lake Placid Christmas Bird Count
Saturday and Sunday February 3 & 4 2018
Arts and Crafts Country Fair Booth in Lake Placid
Friday,Saturday, Sunday, Monday February 16-19, 2018
Great Backyard Bird Count www.birdsource.org
Friday, April 6 to Thursday April 12, 2018
-Highlands Birdathon Week - Helen 269-932-8934 hobenchain@juno,com
Saturday, April 22, 2018
Saturday, May 12, 2018
International Migratory Bird Day
Dinner - Program - Meetings
Lake Josephine Baptist Church
111 Lake Josephine Drive, Sebring, FL 33875
6:30 Covered Dish Dinner
All meetings are FREE and open to the public!