Birds In Their Habitat
The second annual Birds In Their Habitat showcased exceptional avian art work reflective of the talent and quality of work 21 gifted artists. One hundred and ten artists were invited to participate in our Birds in Their Habitat Exhibition and Sale. Jury selection of participating artists was based upon technique, execution, quality and uniqueness of work. This exhibition was proof that wildlife artists are committed to close observation and rendering fine artworks so that others may recognize the beauty of our natural world.
“Once again an outstanding effort was exhibited by volunteers and staff resulting in a very strong performance of the art show,” stated Nelson North, Director, Fairfield Operations, “We are indebted to an exceptional committee lead by Chair Beth Rhame and Artist Coordinator Sarah McCarthy, whose committee members worked tirelessly to produce an incredible event. Better than twenty-five percent of the exhibited art was sold resulting in a highly profitable event. Most importantly these funds will greatly strengthen Connecticut Audubon Society’s mission, to conserve Connecticut’s environment through science-based education that focuses on the State’s bird population and their habitat.
A very special thank you to our sponsors: The Bank of Fairfield, Connecticut Cottages & Gardens, Domaine Clarence Dillon wines, Fairfield Cheese Company and Max’s Art Supplies.
Judy Richardson Receives Certificate of Appreciation From US Department of Agriculture
Judy Richardson, master bird bander and Chairman of the Connecticut Audubon Society Fairfield Regional Board received an International Cooperation Award from the US Department of Agriculture for her significant contribution to the establishment of a Network of Bird Monitoring in Costa Rica. This 2011 Conservations Award is part of the “Wings Across the Americas” program which is a United States Forest Service program to conserve birds, bats, butterflies and dragonflies. Wings Across the Americas supports international conservation and uses Forest Services experience and expertise to improve bird conservation at home and abroad.
In Latin America, a big leap in the collection and sharing of data is found in the establishment of the Network of Bird Banders of Costa Rica. Richardson’s work with the San Vito Bird Club in the establishment of a network of bird monitoring in Costa Rica won her international recognition. The first of its kind in Latin America, the network has been a model for others in the region and facilitates cooperative research projects. Results are being used by bird researchers, land mangers and decision makers in Costa Rica and throughout the Americas for understanding resident and migratory species.
On a local level, here in the U.S., Richardson monitors birds through her bird banding efforts at the Connecticut Audubon Society’s Birdcraft Museum and Sanctuary in Fairfield. Richardson is a master bird bander and Chairman of the Connecticut Audubon Society Fairfield Regional Board. “Many of the birds that migrate to Costa Rica may actually pass through our Birdcraft sanctuary.” states Nelson North Connecticut Audubon Society, Director of Fairfield Operations, “Judy’s bird banding efforts at the Birdcraft are instrumental in the monitoring process. Her work here and in Costa Rica will continue to expand our comprehension of the biology and life histories of our birds, ultimately resulting in their improved conservation.”
Campers Resolve Dead Fish Mysters
Campers at our Summer Nature Camp noticed that there had been a large number of dead fish in our beloved Farm Pond in the Larsen Sanctuary. As good scientists, they wanted to solve the fish mortality mystery. Under the direction of camp staff, they water tested the pond on July 21st, 2011. They ran tests for soil temperature, oxygen, and PH.
After tallying the data results, they found that the soil temperature was averaged at 84 degrees F. This is warm for soil which maintains cooler temperatures below the surface layer. The pH was a stable 8.0 which is in the range of ideal pH for living organisms. The oxygen level was very low at 3.5 mg/l. The oxygen level should be at 5 mg/l or higher. The low oxygen do to the heat, high evaporation, and over growth of surface plants has starved the water of dissolved oxygen and is most likely the cause of the fish die-off. We are hoping for a heavy rain which can increase the dissolved oxygen levels and bring a much needed resources to our local wildlife.
The staff would like to thank each and every camper for his/her dedication and commitment to science by testing the water to help us solve this mystery and aid in our conservation efforts. With the campers’ support we are able to maintain a healthy and productive environment for local wildlife.