The Washington Ornithological Society was chartered in 1988 to increase knowledge of the birds of Washington and to enhance communication among all persons interested in those birds.
The newsletter offers three science articles this issue: Kim Thorburn’s account of recovery efforts and prospects for shrub steppe habitat and wildlife severely affected by the autumn 2020 wildfires; Ron Post’s survey of reports of the effect of climate change on the seabird ecosystem; and Cindy McCormack’s review of the new Scott Wiedensaul book about world bird migration. WOS President Jennifer Kauffman provides the latest information about the upcoming WOS/OBA Annual Conference in Astoria. Bill Tweit pays tribute to the late Bob Sundstrom and his considerable birding legacy. Dave Kreft writes about the delight of unexpected sightings. Finally, the WOS Board discusses its strategy for growing the Patrick Sullivan Young Birder’s Fund. Check out the Current Newsletter.
WOS and the Oregon Birding Association have decided to proceed with their in-person joint conference in Astoria, Oregon on September 16 – 20, 2021! Conference attendees will need to verify that they’ve been vaccinated against COVID-19. Further details – including how conference attendees will verify they have been vaccinated – will be shared this summer when registration begins. Registration for our conference will begin at 8:00 a.m. on Sunday, July 18, 2021. Both WOS and OBA have organized field trips, which may be attended by members from either state, allowing Oregon and Washington birders to become better acquainted. Friday evening, Dr. Dennis Paulson will present his much loved “Stump the Experts” program. Conference keynote speech will be given Saturday night by Dr. John Fitzpatrick, from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. Further preliminary information about the conference is available at WOS’s 2021 Annual Conference
The Washington Bird Records Committee (WBRC) held its spring meeting April 22 and accepted 29 reports as valid new records. The committee added Winter Wren to the state checklist, which now stands at 521 species. Among the accepted reports at the spring meeting were Emperor Goose, Little Gull, “Bewick’s” Tundra Swan, Upland Sandpiper, White-tailed Kite, and Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. Read the WBRC Spring 2021 Meeting Results here.
Volume 13, edited by Ed Swan, features articles by more than two dozen contributors. Included are four general interest articles covering diversity and inclusion in birding, habitat change, and birding highlights from all 39 Washington counties. Also in this issue are seven articles with updates, analysis, and expanded knowledge on regularly occurring species covering topics such as the end of the Northwestern Crow as a distinct species and the “Western Flycatcher” problem in Washington. And 11 articles provide species accounts for 14 species new to the Washington State list since 2005, when the latest Birds of Washington State by Wahl et al. came out. Finally, you’ll find the 11th report of the Washington Bird Records Committee (previously published in Western Birds). Read Volume 13 now.
WOS field trips are resuming. The first to be scheduled is a Yakima County birding trip led by Scott Downes. The trip has already been filled with those who signed up for last year’s canceled trip. WOS’s Trip Coordinator Jen Kunitsugu is in touch with other trip leaders, so keep your eyes on this website for other upcoming field trips. Although the situation around COVID is evolving, please follow the current CDC recommendations, including wearing face masks, keeping 6 feet of social distance, etc. to limit potential exposure. Be prepared to drive on your own or with members of your own household. At your own risk and discretion, you may drive with others if all are vaccinated, face masks are worn, and it’s mutually agreed by the riders.
WOS Board Member Jason Fidorra has created a Facebook Groups page to allow for more interaction and participation among WOS members in hopes of engaging a broader public with birds and birding topics in Washington. Thanks to Elaine Chuang, WOS also is now posting many of its monthly meeting presentations on WOS’s YouTube channel, so that people can view them at any time. For more information about WOS’s online offerings beyond this website, go to the WOS Online page.
All messages to the Tweeters listserv during 2020 have been added to WOS’s Tweeters Archive. The archive now contains all messages from 1994 through 2020. The birding listserv is hosted at the University of Washington, which currently keeps only two years worth of messages. WOS agreed several years ago to create and host an archive with all older Tweeters messages. You can search or browse for messages at WOS’s Tweeters Archive.
All 13 of WOS’s Washington Birds journals published between 1989 and 2021 can now be read on this website or downloaded. Volume 13 was published in April 2021. WOS had already placed the four most recent journals before that online. And WOS President Jennifer Kauffman recently had the eight earlier journals scanned to .pdfs so the complete set of journals could be made available here. Find them at the bottom of the Washington Birds page.
Go to WOS’s Monthly Meetings page for information on our fabulous monthly meeting programs. WOS members who live outside the Seattle area (or are on the road) can still attend using a computer, tablet or phone. It’s easy!