The Washington Ornithological Society was chartered in 1988 to increase knowledge of the birds of Washington State and to enhance communication among all persons interested in those birds.
Thanks to Chris Kessler, who stepped in for Jim Danzenbaker this year to gather much-awaited information on more than 40 CBCs around the state, all the information you’ll need to participate is now available here on the WOS website. You’ll find the dates, places and contacts. Check your calendar and sign up to for one of these fun and important counts!
The Washington Bird Records Committee (WBRC) met October 22, 2022 for its fall meeting.
- 24 reports were accepted as valid new records.
- 1 additional record was accepted as continuing sighting of a record previously accepted at an earlier meeting.
- 13 reports were not accepted.
- 1 report was left as unreviewable.
No species were added to the official Washington state list. The list remains at 522 species, including 510 species fully accredited (supported by specimen, photograph, or recording) and 12 species which are sight-only records (supported only by written documentation). Read the WBRC Fall 2022 Meeting Results here.
For the first time since March 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic began rapidly spreading, WOS held an in-person monthly meeting November 7 at the traditional location, the UW Center for Urban Horticulture in Seattle. The meeting was also available online via Zoom for those who could not or did not wish to attend in person. For the foreseeable future, some meetings, but not all, will be held in person. Announcements will be made in advance as to whether the upcoming meeting will be online-only or “hybrid” (both online and in-person). Check the Monthly Meetings page for details on upcoming meetings. And check the WOS YouTube Channel for recordings of prior meeting presentations.
WOS makes an appearance at the very successful first Bird Lover’s Day organized by the U.S. Corps of Engineers local staff at the Ballard Locks. WOS News Editor Chris Rurik outlines planned and possible changes for WOS News, including switching to quarterly publication and taking on some of the characteristics of the discontinued Washington Birds. Lake Forest Park resident Nancy Morrison describes how she worked to manage the hordes of birders seeking a view of a rare bird in her backyard. Tom Bancroft describes his June trip to the Sinlahekin Valley to hear Veerys. And Ryan Merrill reports on notable sightings during the August – November 2020 period, including the first ever live Wedge-tailed Shearwater seen in the state. For these stories and the board’s recent decision on extending the Birds of the World member benefit go to the Current Newsletter.
Turnout for the WOS Board and Officer elections was strong with 139 WOS members voting for officers and board members. The candidates were wholeheartedly approved by voters, with all candidates garnering 134 to 136 votes. There were seven write-in votes for the vacant president position. Learn about the results and the new officers and board members on the 2022 candidate profile page. They begin their terms Oct. 1, 2022.
Undergraduate students with ties to Washington State are encouraged to apply for grants from the Patrick Sullivan Young Birder’s Fund (PSYBF) to support research related to wild birds or related topics in Washington state. Applicants should propose research to take place during the 2022 calendar year that is done under the coordination or supervision of their undergraduate faculty. Grants will range from $1,000 to $1,500. The new approach is part of the board’s effort to strengthen the Young Birder’s Fund and also WOS’s diversity and inclusion efforts. For more information, go to the PSYBF page.
Thanks to a partnership with Cornell Lab of Ornithology, we now have a terrific new benefit for WOS members: FREE online access to “Birds of the World,” the world’s largest online encyclopedia of birds. Inside its 10,700+ scholarly, in-depth species accounts you’ll find expertly curated media galleries with photos, videos, and sound recordings, dynamic range maps, breeding calendars, and other life history details. Soak up detailed accounts of every species and every family and use the Taxonomy Explorer to explore the birds in your own county. Learn more about this benefit and how to get access to it on our Birds of the World page.
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 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.
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!