January 22 CHPAS Calendar

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Great Horned Owl Reduced 2021
Great Horned Owl by Lorie Chesnut

Welcome, 2022.  The new year began with a *BANG* as one after another wave of snow blew into the Front Range, giving us a white Christmas and new year!  Today, Wednesday, January 5th, brings another snowstorm the promises to deliver a good bit of snow to our area.  Every additional snowstorm brings much needed moisture to this area.  Birds crowd around our feeders and a Great Horned Owl gently hoots outside the window every night.  Winter can be magical.  Enjoy and be safe out there. 

Calendar

More information about the Christmas Bird Count and coming events are available in the January issue of our newsletter “Flyer

January 15, 8:00 a.m. – Birding Trip to the Buford area

Feb 2020 Near Buford
Audubon Members near Buford (2020) by Mark Gorges

We will leave from the Lions Park parking lot at the Children’s Village at 8 a.m. Carpooling may be available based on Covid guidelines. We will drive west on I-80 to Buford, about 27 miles.  We will hike through open ponderosa pine and aspen woodlands looking for winter birds such as crossbills and woodpeckers. We should return by noon or 1 p.m., but if you drive, you can leave whenever you need to. Bring water and dress for the weather and snow on the ground. 

If you are interested in going, contact Grant Frost, 307-343-2024, so that he has a list of those expected, and can let you know if the plans change for any reason.

January 18, 7:00 p.m. – Program: Tanner Hoffman – Investigating plants and soil microorganisms after the Mullen Fire. 

Join us in the Cottonwood Room at the Laramie County Library, 2200 Pioneer Ave.  The program can also be accessed virtually here.   University of Wyoming graduate student Tanner Hoffman is investigating relationships between plants and soil microorganisms after the Mullen Fire. He is in the University of Wyoming’s Soil Microbial Ecology Lab under Dr. Linda van Diepen.

January 25, 6:30 p.m. – Board Meeting, Windflower Room, Laramie County Public Library, 2200 Pioneer Ave. 

Contact Wanda Manley, cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com, if you would like to participate in helping to plan chapter activities.  We have several openings on the Board including Conservation Chair, Education Chair, and Advocacy Chair.  WE NEED YOU! 

January 28, 8:00 a.m. – Country Club Bird Survey

            Contact Chuck Seniawski to take part or to be on his email notice list: 307-638-6519 or chuckski@aol.com. The count will start in the County Clubhouse’s main parking lot.

Jan. 29, 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. – 8th Annual Cheyenne Habitat Hero Workshop

You will not want to miss this important and educational program!  Details about how to register and more about the program are included in the January “Flyer” newsletter and are on the CHPAS Habitat Hero webpage.  In-person space is limited so register today!  You can also watch the morning sessions via Zoom.  Thank you Audubon Rockies for your sponsorship!

Habitat Hero Photo

Cheyenne Christmas Bird Count Results 2021

Great Horned Owl 12.21
Great Horned Owl December 2021

December 18th, 2021 was the official count day for the Cheyenne Christmas Bird Count.  The morning was very cold but the wind was calm, providing a good opportunity to bird.

Thirty-six (36) species were counted on December 18, 2021.  Species highlights includes Wilson’s snipe, Eastern screech-owl, Belted kingfisher, Downy woodpecker, Northern shrike, and Song sparrow.  Five additional species were identified during the count week.

A complete listing can be accessed here: 2021 Cheyenne Christmas Bird Count Results.  More information will be provided in the January issue of “Flyer”, the Chapter’s newsletter.

Saturday, Dec. 18th – Cheyenne Christmas Bird Count

or bird on your own, or be a feeder watcher!

White-breasted NuthatchWe will be meeting at 8 a.m. at the downtown Post Office lobby, 2100 Capitol Ave., to divide into groups that will hit our favorite hotspots such as Wyoming Hereford Ranch, Lions Park and the Arboretum/Research Station for about 2 to 3 hours. Dress for the weather.

If you are a novice, we will pair you with someone with CBC experience. More eyeballs are always welcome and children are always welcome! 

You can also bird on your own within the 7.5-mile radius of the Capitol building (see map and keep track of hours and miles traveled).

Christmas Bird Count

More details are provided in the December issue of “Flyer”, the CHPAS monthly newsletter. 

Questions?  Contact us at cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com.  

December 21 CHPAS Calendar

r_Blue Jay in Fall 2021
Blue Jay

Feeders are up around town as our winter companions enjoy thistle, suet, sunflower and other seeds.  Water continues to be scarce so when you can, be sure to put water out for the birds; you may find that the watering hole is as (or more) popular than your feeding stations! 

Calendar

More information about the Christmas Bird Count and helpful tools like the feeder-watcher data sheet are available in the December issue of our newsletter “Flyer“. 

December 18, 8:00 a.m. – Cheyenne Christmas Bird Count

Meet at the Downtown Post Office lobby, 2100 Capitol Ave., at 8:00 a.m.   Dress for the weather and bring water, binoculars and field guide, if you have them. We will divide into groups to visit simultaneously Wyoming Hereford Ranch, High Plains Grasslands Research Station, F.E. Warren and Lions Park.

You can also be a field observer on your own.  You are free to look for birds anywhere within the Cheyenne count circle—see map on page 4 of our December newsletter.  Record numbers of each species you observe and the amount of time and distance you walk as well as the amount of time and distance you drive. Keep track of where and when you saw species of note so we can tell if you counted the same bird or flock as someone else.

Northern Flicker

For your report, compile the total number of individuals of each species and include all your travel information. Turn in your results at the tally party or contact Grant Frost, CBC coordinator, at 307-343-2024.  You can also email Grant at frostgrant2[at]gmail.com.

December 18, 5:30 p.m. (5 p.m. Happy Half Hour) – Tally Party for Cheyenne Christmas Bird Count at Bella Fuoco Wood Fired Pizza, RSVP

Eric Dalton and his wife recently bought Bella Fuoco (it means “Beautiful Fire” in Italian) Wood Fired Pizza, 2115 Warren Ave.  Due to the limited seating (25) and kitchen size, you must pre-order your dinner by Wednesday evening, Dec. 15, by emailing Lorie Chesnut at cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com.   Please note “Bella Fuoco” in the subject of your email.   This is a no-host event and the menu is available at https://www.bellafuocopizza.com/.

If you don’t plan to join us for dinner, you can drop off your tallies during the “Happy Half Hour” before dinner at 5:30 p.m. or email them to Grant Frost.

December 19, 8:00 a.m. – Guernsey/Ft. Laramie Christmas Bird Count

            If you are going to join the count, please let Jane Dorn know at 307-640-4002. Also call her if the weather turns nasty; Wednesday, December 29 would be an alternate date. Bring water, lunch, warm clothes, binoculars, and a scope if you have one, and whatever you need for a day watching birds at Guernsey State Park, Ft. Laramie National Historic Site, the Oregon Trail Ruts and Hartville.

                Birding on your own or watching your feeders? The center point of the 7.5-mile radius count circle is where Highway 26 crosses the Goshen County/Platte County line. Please send in your results ASAP to the count compiler, Jane Dorn, 307-640-4002, linglebird[at]yahoo.com.

            Anyone in the neighborhood of the count area is welcome to meet Jane at 8 a.m. at the Ft. Laramie Post Office, or at 9:30 a.m. at the main entrance to Guernsey State Park.

December 31, 8 a.m. – Country Club Bird Survey

            Contact Chuck Seniawski to take part or to be on his email notice list: 307-638-6519 or chuckski[at]aol.com. The count will start in the County Clubhouse’s main parking lot.

November 21 CHPAS Calendar

Townsend's Solitaire_M GorgesThe month of November typically welcomes winter to the Front Range area and this year was no exception.  On the first day of the month, snow blanketed the region making life even more challenging for migrating birds.  Thankfully, the snow was not deep and soon rain followed but a long winter is ahead for the wildlife of southeastern Wyoming. 

The Townsend’s Solitaire (photographed by Mark Gorges) may remain in Wyoming over the winter period. Learn more about this engaging bird at The Cornell Lab’s All About Birds. 

Calendar

More information about all of these events may be found in the November NewsletterFlyer“. 

November 16, 7 p.m. Eric Dalton presents “Common Outdoor Ground widens scope from trails to wildlife-friendly projects”.  Cottonwood Room of the Laramie County Library. 

COGCommon Outdoor Ground (COG) was started by a group of outdoor recreationists in Laramie several years ago as an umbrella organization to spearhead volunteer projects in the Medicine Bow National Forest.  The emphasis has been on trail work and mountain biking in particular.  The group is now branching out beyond the National Forest, taking on projects like making fences wildlife friendly and is looking for other opportunities, including improving birding access and habitat.  Eric Dalton is President of COG and lives in Cheyenne.  Zoom Link

November 20, 9 a.m. – Field Trip at Lions Park in Cheyenne

Birders … think about this field trip as a primer for the Christmas Bird Count which is right around the corner!  Dark-eyed Junco

We plan to meet at the parking lot next to the Children’s Village at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens in Lions Park.  We will be looking for wintering birds in the park including waterfowl such as geese, ducks and grebes on the lake.  Of course, we may see other species in the pines of the garden and willows by the lake. 

Please contact Mark Gorges at 307-287-4953 if you plan to join us, so that we have a list of those expected and can let you know if the plans change for any reason such as bad weather. 

November 23, 7 p.m. – Board Meeting: Laramie County Library, Windflower Room (3rd floor)

We are always looking for new members of our Board of Directors.  Contact Wanda Manley, President, at cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com if you would like to help plan our chapter activities. 

November 26, 8 a.m. Country Club Bird Survey

Contact Chuck Seniawski to take part or to be on his email notice list: 307-638-6519. 

October 21 CHPAS Calendar

Cropped_Flying CranesOctober has arrived and the winter solstice is less than three months away – on December 21st.  As the days grow shorter and the temperatures colder, consider feeding our feathered friends if you don’t already do so.  In these dry times, they also appreciate water if you can supply it.  

Also listen carefully as you are walking outside as many types of birds are migrating south during October.  In addition to Canada Geese, you may hear Sandhill Cranes and other birds as they travel south. 

Enjoy these last autumn days and use some time to increase your knowledge about our region’s environment, birds, and mammals.  It will be time well spent! 

Calendar

October 19, 7:00 p.m. – Dry Creek: “Evolution of an Urban Stream in Cheyenne” by Jeff Geyer, Laramie County Conservation District Water Specialist.  Cottonwood Room of the Laramie County Library.  

PALS Construction
July 9 2021 Jeff Geyer cuts back the Picket Baffle to prepare for weaving

Cheyenne’s increased development over the last 20 years means increased impervious surfaces, which in turn means higher flows in drainages through town. Dry Creek drains two-thirds of Cheyenne which equates to 12 square miles of roof tops, roads, and driveways. Storm-water runoff has changed the shape and behavior of Dry Creek, degrading it. The Laramie County Conservation District is using best management practices (BMPs) to restore and rejuvenate Dry Creek to a functioning system within its Cheyenne Business Park Natural Area.

Jeff has a Bachelor’s in Fisheries and Wildlife Management and an Master’s degree in Rangeland Ecology and Watershed Management, both from the University of Wyoming.

Learn more about Dry Creek and the watershed project which is partially Audubon_Logo_BLKfunded with grants from both the Cheyenne High Plains Audubon Society and the National Audubon Society.   This program will also be accessible via Zoom (https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87615181165). 

October 23, 8:00 a.m. Field Trip to Colorado’s Front Range Lakes. 

Front Range Lakes 2020 B GorgesWe plan to leave from the parking lot next to the Children’s Village at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens in Lions Park at 8 a.m. Following Covid protocols, car pooling may be available at the discretion of drivers.      

We will be looking for a variety of wintering waterfowl (geese, ducks, grebes, etc.) on lakes down to Wellington and beyond depending on time. Although we should turn back north by noon, you can leave whenever you need to. Dress for changing weather; bring water and snacks.

Please contact Grant Frost at 307-343-2024 if you plan to join us, so that we have a list of those expected and can let you know if the plans change for any reason such as bad weather.

October 26, 7:00 p.m. Board Meeting: Laramie County Library, Sage Room (second floor).  Contact Wanda Manley if you would like to participate (cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com) in helping to plan chapter activities.

October 29, 8:00 a.m. Country Club Bird Survey.  Contact Chuck Seniawski to take part or to be on his email notice list: 307-638-6519 or chuckski@aol.com. The count will start in the County Clubhouse’s main parking lot.

September 21 CHPAS Calendar

Sunflower with Pollinators

Fall is on the way! Goldfinch and other birds are enjoying the seeds from many plants and particularly those of sunflowers growing wild throughout the region and also in many gardens. Migration south has begun – be sure to get out and enjoy Wyoming’s short fall season.

Remember that you can keep in mind key migration periods through BirdCastBirdcast is a collaboration between The Cornell Lab, Colorado State University, and U Mass Amherst.  Much of the migration happens at night.  On a quiet night, you may be able to hear birds as they fly above on their trip south.  

September 21, 7:00 p.m. – Pete Arnold’s photographic tour of Costa Rica.  

Mr. CombedI've got my eye on youChapter board member Pete Arnold and his wife Ruth toured Costa Rica for two weeks in January 2020. While there, Pete took 9,000 photos and added 125 birds to his life list. He’ll share a select number of those photos and birds, and the stories from the trip.

The program will be our first since spring 2020!  Join us at 7:00 p.m. in the Cottonwood Room, Laramie County Library.  We recommend wearing a mask and social distancing.  No food will be served. 

The Quetzal photographer
Pete Arnold, Photographer

September 24, 8:00 a.m. – Country Club Bird Survey.

Contact Chuck Seniawski to take part or to be on his email notice list: 307-638-6519 or chuckski@aol.com. The count will start in the Country Clubhouse’s main parking lot.

September 25, 8:00 a.m. – Field Trip to Wyoming Hereford Ranch

We will meet at the Wyoming Hereford Ranch office, 1101 Hereford Ranch Road, at 8:00 a.m. and we should be done by noon.  What can we expect to see during our trip?  That depends on the weather.  If it stays warm through the entire month, we could have some of our summer birds who have not headed south or some migrating birds who are taking their time on the way south.  Early winter weather could bring in some of our winter birds. 

Please contact Grant Frost at 307-343-2024 if you plan to join us. 

September 28, 6:30 p.m. Board Meeting.   

Please contact Wanda Manley (cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com) if you would like to participate in helping to plan chapter activities. 

 

Native Pollinator Habitat Tour – Aug 12th 6:00 p.m. Laramie County Library

Join us at the Laramie County Library Southwest Parking lot on Thursday, August 12th at 6:00 p.m. for a pollinator habitat tour with “Native Nancy”. Learn about the gardens at the library, see the abundant life among the flowers and how you can benefit pollinators in your community.

This event is brought to you by the Laramie County Conservation District as part of the series “Hot Summer Nights with Native Nancy” tour. This event will inspire you! All are welcome!

Dates to Remember: August 2021

Wilson's PhalaropeAugust is the beginning of our annual membership drive. You will receive a notice in the mail in the latter part of the month and we encourage you to renew your membership – the best bargain in town for only $ 12.00 annually!  All current chapter memberships expire on September 1st, so don’t forget to renew and join us for another year of field trips, programs, and more!

August 14 7:00 a.m. Field Trip to Table Mountain Wildlife Habitat Management Area and Fort Laramie

We will leave from the parking lot next to the Children’s Village at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens at 7 a.m. Plan to caravan; carpooling will be at the discretion of each driver.

The first leg of our trip will take us north to Hawk Springs, then east on gravel to Table Mountain where we will be looking for a variety of shorebirds. Next, we will drive to the town of Fort Laramie to meet with Jane Dorn who will show us the site for the Habitat Hero garden that the chapter is supporting. We will enjoy our picnic lunch at the Fort Laramie National Historic Site which is a Park Service fee site. There we can do some birding after lunch before heading home. This outing will be for most of the day. We plan to get back to town by about 4:00 p.m. More detail in the August newsletter. Please contact Grant Frost at 307-343-2024 if you wish to join us.

August 24 7:00 p.m. Board Meeting – We are always looking for new volunteers! Contact Wanda Manley (cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com) if you would like to join us for the meeting or to plan chapter activities.

August 27 7:00 a.m. Country Club Bird Survey

Contact Chuck Seniawski to take part or to be on his email notice list: 307-638-6519. The count will start in the Country Clubhouse’s main parking lot.

LOOK WHAT IS HAPPENING IN SEPTEMBER!

September 21 7:00 p.m. Travels in Cost Rica with Pete Arnold

This will be our first in-person program since spring 2020, at the Laramie County Library Cottonwood Room. To celebrate, we have “our own” Pete Arnold as presenter. Pete is a renown photographer whose images will delight all who attend. A few to sample, below. Join us! More in the September issue of The Flyer.

Dates to Remember: July

Western Water Network Grant Award

Jeff Geyer at the Project Site
Jeff Geyer at the Wetlands Project Site, March 2021

CHPAS is pleased to announce that we are one of five Audubon Chapters receiving a grant under the National Audubon Western Water Network Grant Program.  We join four chapters in Arizona, Colorado, and Utah with a shared goal of wetlands habitat restoration and protection for our streams and rivers.  More about the project and the chapters who received funding can be accessed at 2021 Audubon Chapter Western Water Network Grants.  CHPAS is partnering with Jeff Geyer, Water Specialist at the Laramie County Conservation District on this exciting project.  A webpage with more details about the project (and educational materials for the public as well as youth) is under construction! 

July 9, 8:30 a.m. Volunteer Opportunity on Lower Dry Creek

Calling those who like to work with wood and get muddy! We need a few strong individuals to help us construct log structures for the Wetlands project discussed above. We will gather off Campstool Road, on the right side, just past the WY Liquor Distribution Warehouse (a little east of Whitney Road).

Bring work gloves, hip or muck boots, water and bug spray. This requires some lifting, so physical strength and the ability to work outside in the heat is required. If you can work for one or two hours, that would be fine – but longer is possible too. This isn’t an event for children. For more information, call Mark Gorges at 307-287-4953.

July 11, 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Laramie County Master Gardener’s Garden Walk

Palma Garden
Jack Palma’s Garden with water for wildlife

The Laramie County Master Gardeners’ Garden Walk is back. The theme is “Habitat Hero” gardens. It’s scheduled for July 11, 1-4 p.m. It’s free, but donations are appreciated.  Five gardens are on the walk, and all are certified Habitat Hero gardens. You can start at any garden and pick up the booklet that has the location and description of each. 

Barb and Mark Gorges will be hosting by the Habitat Hero Demonstration Garden at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens, next to the parking lot in front of the conservatory, 710 S. Lions Park Drive.  More information is provided in the July issue of The Flyer, our Chapter newsletter. 

 July 17, 7:00 a.m. Field Trip on the Silver Lake Trail in the Snowies (aka Meadow Falls Trail)

We will leave from the parking lot next to the Children’s Village at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens at 7 a.m.  Plan to caravan; carpooling will be at the discretion of each driver. We will head west on I-80 to Laramie, then south on WY-130 to the National Forest. The Silver Lake Campground turnoff is just over 3 miles beyond Lake Marie. The trailhead parking is on the left just before you get to the campground. It is about an 80-mile drive.

Dusky Grouse
Dusky Grouse by Mark Gorges

The hike is 2.7 miles around the lake and through the forest then back up the cars. The trail is rated as moderate with only about a 400-foot elevation change at around 10,500 feet in elevation. We should be able to find a dozen or so typical forest birds and may see some Dusky Grouse.

Please contact Grant Frost at 307-343-2024 if you plan to join us.  We plan to be finished by about 2:00 p.m. and back to Cheyenne at about 4:00 p.m.  Be sure to bring lunch and water with you.