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! 


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.


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. 

June 24th – Library Garden Tour – All You Need To Know About Native Gardens!

Native NancyCurious about all of the activity over the past year on the grounds of the Laramie County Library?  Come by the Laramie County Library for “Hot Summer Nights with Native Nancy” and learn about why native gardens are important and how to start your own!

Join us on Thursday, June 24, at 6:30 p.m. in the southwest library parking lot.  Nancy Loomis will be there to explain the plantings and to advise on how to create your own Native Garden! 

This program is brought to you by the Laramie County Conservation District (LCCD).  Visit LCCD’s website to learn more about the many resources that they bring to our region. 

Wyoming Native Plant Society Annual Meeting – Laramie June 25-27, 2021

2020-08-02--DRC_0355The Wyoming Native Plant Society (WYNPS) meeting will be held in Laramie this year and will offer a number of guided plant hikes in the surrounding area.  Information about activities and the meeting schedule can be found at the following link:  2021 Annual Meeting.

This year the WYNPS returns to Laramie to explore vegetation from the basin to the alpine. Participants will also tour the Rocky Mountain Herbarium to see the largest collection of Rocky Mountain plants in the world! And, University of Wyoming botanists will share some insights on how plants survive the harsh conditions of Wyoming. Tour options will include local endemics Laramie columbine (Aquilegia laramiensis) and Laramie false sage (Artemisia simplex).

Read more about registration for the event at the 2021 Annual Meeting link provided above.

Big Day Bird Count 2021

Cheyenne Big Day by Barb Gorges
Photo by Barb Gorges, Lions Park

Cheyenne Big Day Bird Count 2021 – Results

The weather was initially foggy and cool, but Cheyenne’s birding community prevailed! An estimated 30 people participated, submitting 74 bird lists over the day. One hundred thirty six (136) species were identified; a good day for Cheyenne Birders!

Read more about the Big Day results on Barb Gorges blog; Cheyenne Bird Banter. 

Thank you to everyone who came out to contribute!  Questions about how to submit to eBird?  Follow this National Audubon link which will provide you with detail and instructions.  You can always send your question to cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com too. 

Dates to Remember: June

Foothills Audubon Club 2021On June 5, CHPAS welcomed the Foothills Audubon Club from Colorado on their visit to the Wyoming Hereford Ranch.  A large group showed up and fun was had by all.  Our visitors were astounded by the Ranch and so grateful that we have this Important Bird Area (IBA) in our Chapter region.  CHPAS members make good use of this lovely area and are thankful for the Hales generous open-access policy.  This is truly a birdwatchers paradise! 

June 12 – Field Trip to Sybille Canyon

Picture1We will leave from the parking lot next to the Children’s Village at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens at 7:00 a.m. Plan to caravan; carpooling will be at the discretion of each driver. We will head north on I-25 and west on WY-34, about 88 miles to Sybille Canyon and the Tom Thorn/Beth Williams Wildlife Habitat Management Area.

Continue reading “Dates to Remember: June”

Migration of Wyoming’s Burrowing Owls – A Murie Audubon Society Presentation

burrowing owlOn Thursday, May 20th, at 7:00 p.m., the Murie Audubon Society (Casper, WY) will be holding a Zoom meeting that will be of interest to many of our fellow birders. 

We are pleased to announce the May 20, 2021 program. The presentation itself is a collaborative effort sponsored by the Wyoming Game and Fish Department, Werner Wildlife Museum, and Murie Audubon Society.

Andrea Orabona is the statewide Nongame Bird Biologist for the Wyoming Game and Fish Department’s Nongame Program based in Lander and will be presenting the Zoom meeting. She is collaborating on this project with colleague Dr. Courtney Conway from the University of Idaho and his research partners from the U.S., Canada, and Mexico.

Recent developments in solar-powered GPS technology in the form of smaller transmitters are helping researchers collect data on the elusive seasonal migration and winter ranges of Burrowing Owls that nest in Wyoming during the summer months.  In the past few years, researchers have placed satellite transmitters on Burrowing Owls in western states. Unfortunately, many of those have died or their transmitters have stopped sending locations.  Owls outfitted with the new transmitters from Wyoming, along with other owls from western states and Canadian provinces, will add new data and hopefully new understating about these mysterious little birds.

The Burrowing Owl is classified as a Species of Greatest Conservation Need in Wyoming, making this full annual cycle conservation project extremely important. Andrea will discuss the need for this work, project objectives and methods, and results of Burrowing Owl migration thus far.

Werner Wildlife Museum will host this Zoom meeting as part of their Wildlife Study Series. The Werner programs are normally held at the Werner Wildlife on the third Thursday of each month at 7:00 p.m. and are free and open to the public. Due to social distancing precautions, this program will appear via Zoom on Thursday May 20, 2021.

Join the Murie Audubon Society for this special program!  To Join this Zoom Meeting click on this link:  https://caspercollege.zoom.us/j/96003724591?pwd=eVhDOU9TMTIyRWpOM0lPTmRaTUZlZz09