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Wednesday, September 27, 2023

Weminuche Audubon Society: more than birds

By Jean Zirnhelt | Weminuche Audubon Society

At our June annual meeting, held this year on Wednesday, June 21, Weminuche Audubon members will gather to share a potluck dinner, review accomplishments of the past year and hold elections for positions on the board of directors. 

We invite you to join in the fun, find out what we’ve been up to and help us plan for the future.

For more than 100 years, the name Audubon Society has been associated with the protection of birds. At the national level, the motto of the organization reminds us that by protecting birds we protect the earth. And while a love of birds certainly is shared by members of our local chapter, we are so much more.

Our projects reflect the varied interests and talents of our members. We maintain a beautiful garden on the Geothermal Greenhouse Partnership site in Centennial Park to showcase and promote the use of native plants in landscaping. Through Pagosa Wetland Partners, we conduct tours along the Riverwalk which highlight the importance of wetland areas and advocate for their protection. Our members volunteer in education programs for area youth which are organized by Audubon Rockies Community Naturalist Keith Bruno. We partner with certified herbalist Lake McCullough by sponsoring popular walks to learn about edible and medicinal qualities of the plants around us. We even go out at night to look for bats. The list goes on.

Oh, and yes, we look for birds. We are in the middle of our chapter’s annual survey of birds in areas of the national forest to compare bird populations in areas which have been treated or not for fire prevention. We lead bird walks at Chimney Rock National Monument, survey shorebird populations at national wildlife refuges in Monte Vista and Alamosa, look for evidence of the disappearing Mexican spotted owl and organize the annual Christmas Bird Count in our community in December. 

The public is invited to join us at the Community United Methodist Church on Lewis Street at 5:30 p.m. for our meeting on June 21. Please bring a dish to share and your dinnerware and utensils. Memberships to our chapter are available for $15 per year. Contact us at weminuche.audubon@gmail.com for further information. 

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