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.
The WOS Board has announced that next year’s annual conference will be held April 25-28 in Long Beach, Washington. The board is busy recruiting trip leaders and arranging for hotels, meals, and evening programs. It plans to offer plenty of half- and full day field trips, including pelagic trips if possible. Reserve these days on your calendar and plan to attend! More information will be forthcoming as it is available. The board was forced to cancel the 2023 conference planned for Astoria, Oregon because of logistical problems that could not be surmounted.
The Washington Bird Records Committee met Monday, May 1, 2023 by Zoom for its Spring meeting. Only one species, Eastern Bluebird, was added to the official Washington State Checklist. The committee voted on more than 40 submitted reports. Spring meetings typically review the more easily decided reports. The major reviews will take place in the fall. See the spring results here.
Steven C. Hampton’s presentation on “Birds and Climate Change, with a Special Focus on the Pacific Northwest” at WOS’s May 1, 2023 Monthly Meeting is now viewable online. The presentation has been added to WOS’s YouTube channel. Here is the link to that video: https://youtu.be/BtZ91IgIirc Also, this link will always take you to the full set of WOS recorded presentations.
Issue 201 has some important news to report. First and unfortunately, WOS President Dave Kreft announces that the 2023 WOS Annual Meeting planned for Astoria in September had to be canceled because of logistical problems that could not be overcome. The board will now begin planning a Spring 2024 conference and is also considering some “mini conferences” before then. Steve Hampton reports on his research of Christmas Bird Count records since 1975 for six Passerine species that have been rare or uncommon in winter in the Pacific Northwest. He found that all six have increased in abundance, believed to be because of climate warming. Ed Pullen reports that volunteers are needed to fill some important positions. Tom Bancroft discusses his attraction to Wandering Tattlers. Ryan Merrill presents Washington Field Notes for two reporting periods. Matt Bartels reviews the latest addition to the state’s checklist, which came after a two-year gap in new species in the state. To see these stories, go to the Current Newsletter.
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.
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!