Jayhawk Audubon is the chapter of the National Audubon Society serving Lawrence, Douglas County, and surrounding communities in eastern Kansas.
Our mission is to provide opportunities for greater understanding and appreciation of birds and other wildlife, to encourage sustainable practices, and to advocate for actions and policies which result in protection and preservation of intact ecosystems.
Join us! All of our resources are available to the public free of charge and our meetings and field trips are always open to the public. If you would like to become a member, the cost is just $20 per year for an individual membership. Click here for more membership information.
Eastern Bluebird female photo by Jim Bresnahan.
All events are free and open to everyone. All levels of interest and experience are invited. A few extra binoculars will be available for loan.
Ring-billed Gull by Lorna Padden/Audubon Photography Awards
Mar. 25th, 2023 (Sat.) Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge (Formally known as Squaw Creek NWR)
We will meet at the Baker Wetlands Discovery Center Parking lot at 8:00 am (Or you can choose to meet us at the lookout tower on the refuge – let me know to look for you). Due to continuing covid threat, please organize your own transportation. If you can possibly car pool, please do so. A large caravan of cars could diminish our success. Distance is about 115 miles one way and will take less than 2 hours. Our main targets this trip will be half a million (could be a million, but who’s counting?) Snow Geese. We should see up to five species of geese. Numerous species of ducks and grebes should also be present. Sometimes Trumpeter and Tundra Swans can be seen. On arrival we will be viewing the throng of birds from the main lookout then driving the 10 mile loop drive around the main water body. I will have a telescope for the group. In some places other species will be seen such as several species of blackbirds, sparrows and possibly wrens could be present. Woodland species are also possible at several stops.
Mar. 29th, 2023 (Wed.) Clinton Lake Dam(Outlet Tower) and Model Airplane Field.
Meet on dam at pullout by outlet tower at 8:00 am. Telescope available. Focus will be on the identification of numerous waterfowl (geese, ducks, scoters, & loons) and gulls potentially available. Once we have seen what we can we will travel to the south end of dam and scope that area of the lake. Depending on cloud cover and wind the species diversity and abundance can vary greatly from one day to the next. From there we will go below the dam to the model airplane field and those wetlands. We will look primarily for a variety of sparrows and possibly wrens. We will check the airfield for possible American and Sprague’s Pipits. Flyovers by Smith’s Longspurs are also possible. We are likely to be able to see and hear both Eastern and Western Meadowlarks on the runway edges.
March Educational Presentation:
National Wildlife Refuges
Nova Clarke | March 27
Nova Clarke has been a ranger for both the National Park Service and US Fish and Wildlife Service since 1997 and has moved all over the U.S. She moved to Kansas in August of 2020 from Louisiana. She will speak about the National Wildlife Refuges in Kansas: Marais des Cygnes, Quivira, and Flint Hills, where she is Visitor Services Manager.
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Photo by Jarett Thurman - LeConte's Sparrow - Clinton Lake
Plants for Birds
Support the birds and pollinators in your backyard by planting native plants. The Jayhawk Audubon Society has joined with National Audubon to promote Plants for Birds, a nationwide effort to get 1 million native plants planted within five years
THREE TENETS OF GARDENING FOR BIRDS
1) Grow trees, shrubs, vines and flowers
2) Lots of them
3) Mostly native
Statement on Avian Influenza
Avian influenza, or bird flu, appears to present minimal risk to humans. As of April 22, 2022, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has reported zero cases of bird flu in humans. Risk to songbirds (common visitors to bird feeders) also appears very low according to Dr. Julianna Lenoch, who directs the United States Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service’s (USDA APHIS) National Wildlife Disease Program. There has been no official recommendation that people should take down bird feeders unless they also keep domestic poultry. If you have a backyard poultry flock, keep their food and water inaccessible to wild birds and take down bird feeders. All people feeding birds should clean their feeders and birdbaths on a weekly basis, and, as always, avoid direct contact with wild birds.
On April 26, 2022 Kansas Dept. of Wildlife and Parks Wildlife Disease Biologist Shane Hesting provided the following statement concerning Avian Influenza and bird feeders: “At this time in Kansas, the risk to songbirds is low because most waterfowl have moved north in their migration and because of the ecological niche separation between songbirds and waterfowl. Make sure to thoroughly clean your bird feeders with a 10 percent bleach solution every two weeks to prevent other pathogens from affecting birds. The virus may return in the fall when the migrations to the south begin; stay tuned as more information becomes available.”
Cornell Lab of Ornithology Guidelines