Birding is for everyone and Lahontan Audubon Society is pleased to offer bird walks with an American Sign Language interpreter to share the world of birds and birding with the Deaf community.
On Saturday May 14, 2022, the Spring Global Big Day returns. For those of you who don’t know, Big Day is an unofficial international birding day, encouraging everyone to go out and bird. We are no strangers to Big Day, and encourage you to celebrate the holiday by going birding. You can go birding everywhere, from the wilderness to your own backyard feeders. Our Pelican article about Fall Big Day 2021 is included below as an example.
On the morning of Sunday April 10th, Lahontan Audubon Society and Northern Nevada Federation for the Blind (NFB) once again hosted an auditory-based field trip at Oxbow Nature Study Area. Clients from NFB were introduced to some of the birds of the Nature Area by museum skins they could handle. We all then departed along the nature area trails listening for the songs and calls of the birds in the area. In total, our group encountered 33 different species. To read the full species checklist, click the link button below:
Lahontan Audubon Society graciously thanks the following individuals and organizations for their help in this event:
On the morning of Saturday April 16th, our chapter led a field trip to explore Veterans' Parkway Lake and wetlands. This field trip took place in adverse weather conditons, as it began during a drizzle of rain followed by high winds (colloquially known as the Washoe Zephyr). However, the diverse bird species were still present at the lake, some were foraging while others were hunkered down, waiting out the weather, such as the pictured Double-crested Cormorant. We give a shout out to the guests who were willing to brave the elements and get a great look at the birds. Below is the full list.
If you are enjoying our drawing workshops, join us for some in person practice sessions. These are a great addendum to the webinars and provide an opportunity to meet some of the other students in the classes.
Bird Drawing Practice
Tuesday, April 12, 12:30-2:30 pm
South Valleys Library, Diamond Room
15650 Wedge Parkway
Reno, NV 89511
Did you enjoy our first Bird Drawing Workshop with Christine Elder? Diane Wong-Kone will bring some of Lahontan Audubon Society's taxidermy bird mounts to the South Valleys Library. Come and meet other students in person! This will be an opportunity to share our sketches, to share what we learned, and to practice drawing various Nevada birds from stuffed mounts, rather than photos. Please bring a sketchbook, pencil, and whatever drawing tools you wish to use. This is a drop in session and registration is not required, but you can RSVP so we know who to expect.
Nature Journal Practice Field Trip
Tuesday, April 19, 8:00-11:00 am
Field gestures! We learned about field gesture sketching with Christine Elder in yesterday's workshop. Today, we are going to take our sketchbooks out to the field. Diane Wong-Kone will lead a small field trip that focuses on birding and taking field notes. The ducks and geese on Virginia Lake will provide practice for quick sketches using live birds. Please bring binoculars, a sketchbook, and pencil/pen.
Shorebird and Waterbird Studio Session
Tue Apr 26th 10:00am - 12:00pm
Northwest Reno Library Meeting Room, 2325 Robb Dr., Reno, NV, 89523
This week is all about our migrating shorebirds and waterbirds as we get ready for the Spring Wings Bird Festival in Fallon next weekend! Using techniques learned in John Muir Laws' Monday workshop, we will practice sketching and drawing with Lahontan Audubon Society's taxidermy bird collection. This will be a great opportunity to also look at bird characteristics before the birding festival and to learn the birds before seeing them in the field. Please bring a sketchbook and your favorite drawing tools. This will be a casual session to meet up, share ideas and learn more about our local birds!
Date/Time: Tuesday, May 3, 2022
Location: Meet at the corner of Pinehaven Rd. and Sierra Pine Drive in Caughlin Ranch.
Leader: Diane Wong-Kone
Description: We will walk up a moderately steep, rough dirt road and then follow a dirt trail that crosses through patches of Jeffrey Pine trees. Pinyon Jays have been seen in this area recently and in previous years, but they can be difficult to find because they fly long distances. Following up on John Muir Laws' drawing workshop on Monday evening, we will search for Pinyon Jays. Along the way, we can all share our knowledge of this bird as we also explore and see what other birds are in the area. In the field sketches and notes are highly encouraged. As we walk, take note of the habitat, count the birds, and form questions to help you learn more about whatever we discover on this outing. Nature journaling is all about the process of discovery.
Bird Drawing Practice
Date/Time: Tuesday, May 10, 2022
Location: Northwest Reno Library, 2325 Robb Dr, Reno, NV 89523 Map
Leader: Diane Wong-Kone
Description: Toned paper, mixed media, shorebirds, field gestures - whew! We've learned a lot over the past five weeks. John Muir Laws refers to the drawing habit as pencil miles. The more pencil miles you log, the better you get, because drawing is a skill that takes practice. Join Diane Wong-Kone at the Northwest Reno Library to practice some of the techniques we've learned, using Lahontan Audubon Society's taxidermy bird mounts. The mounts offer a close up view of feathers and other bird structures that you may not get as good a chance to see in the field, as birds typically don't stay still for very long. These bird mounts are normally housed at the Galena Creek Visitor Center, and offer a great resource for study for anyone learning to draw birds. This will be a casual session and a chance to meet up in person, to share our sketches, thoughts, and combined knowledge of what we've been learning with Christine Elder and John Muir Laws. Please bring your sketchbook and your favorite drawing or coloring tools.
We are excited to announce the return of the Spring Wings Birding Festival at the Lahontan Valley Wetlands. We are working with Stillwater National Wildlife Refuge, Friends of Stillwater NWR, Nevada Department of Wildlife, Fallon Paiute-Shoshone Tribe, Great Basin Bird Observatory, and the City of Fallon to host self-guided tours of Stillwater NWR, Carson Lake WMA, and the Fallon Paiute Shoshone Wetlands. We are recruiting volunteers to be stationed at these three locations and help participants spot and identify birds.
The festival is scheduled for for Saturday, 4/30, and Sunday, 5/1. Volunteers are needed for two shifts each day, 7:30-11:30 and 11:00-3:00. Please let us know if you are interested and available to volunteer.
From February 4th through the 6th, former LAS vice-president Alan Gubanich led a birding class to the Tule Lake and Lower Klamath Wildlife refuges on the California/Oregon border. This field trip was hosted through Truckee Meadows Community College. The goal of this class was to view the wintering species at the refuges, including Bald Eagles, Tundra Swans, and Snow Geese. The diversity at the refuges was impressive, as participants observed Great-horned Owls, Sandhill Cranes, Common Mergansers, and too many Bald Eagles and Snow Geese to count!
Our staff was along for the ride, at this adventure! We were able to keep eBird lists of the species, which were summarized in the trip report below. We also captured a video of Snow Geese flocks in flight, to show how impressively big the truly are. Click on the buttons below to view either.
A huge thank you to Alan for organizing this event and sharing his passion for birding with the greater community!
Photographs were taken by Alan and Parker Flickinger.
On January 21st, Jeff Bleam led a field trip exploring Damonte Ranch Wetlands. He kept an eBird checklist of the many different species he observed on his walk.
On Friday, January 7th, Jeff Bleam led our first field trip of 2022, visiting Diamond Creek Pond. Below are his field trip report and several photos he submitted from his checklist.