May 2022 CHPAS Calendar

Mountain Chickadee by Grant Frost

One of the biggest months in the birding world is here! May is filled with opportunities to see migrants as they pass through Goshen, Laramie, and Platte counties. Local birders have already seen Orange-crowned and Yellow-rumped Warblers, Green-tailed and Spotted Towhees, Say’s Phoebe, and the Blue-gray Gnatcatcher (all at Wyoming Hereford Ranch in May 2022). Once again we thank the Hales for allowing birders to enjoy their lovely ranch.

Bullock’s Oriole

More species will be seen as the month continues. Personally, I’m waiting for the first Bullock’s Oriole to appear at our orange and jelly feeder. Don’t miss this special time of the year. Bird on!

Calendar

May 7, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. May Flowers at the State Museum.

We will be there talking about birds and pollinator gardens. Let your imagination bloom and learn about the world of plants! Make your own potted plant, explore the root systems of your favorite flowers, and meet experts from across Wyoming.

To keep all families COVID-safe, they are requiring timed registration for this event. Use this link to reserve your one-hour time slot for FREE! May Flowers

May 21, 6:30 a.m. Annual Cheyenne Big Day Bird Count

Starting at Lions Park, we will cover birding hot spots throughout the Cheyenne area. If you want to join us later than 6:30 a.m., please call Mark, 307-287-4953, to get a location update. We also encourage people to report all bird sightings during the 24-hour period beginning at midnight on the free app at eBird.org.

Brown Thrasher by Mark Gorges

We will leave from the Lions Park parking lot between the Children’s Village at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens and the picnic shelter to hike around the park for about an hour or two. We will then head to the Wyoming Hereford Ranch. At about lunch time we will head out to the Agricultural Research Station and the Arboretum west of the Air Force Base.

Bring a lunch or pick one up on the way; bring water and dress for variable weather. Everyone, no matter what your birding skills, is invited. Bring binoculars if you have them. The more eyes we have, the more birds we will see. We may finish the planned routes by 3 p.m. However, you may join us for as long as you wish and leave when you need to.

May 22, 1 to 3 p.m. – Greenway Cleanup

Cleaning up our Greenway

Cheyenne Audubon is hosting a Greenway cleanup event, Sunday, May 22nd. The public is invited to help. The starting location is the parking lot adjacent to the intersection of Van Buren Avenue and Laramie Street (just north of East Lincolnway and east of its intersection with Pershing Blvd.). Work will proceed to the north along Dry Creek.

Trash bags and light-weight gloves will be provided. Participants should wear sturdy footwear (preferably waterproof) and heavy gloves and bring rakes and hoes, if available, for fishing trash out of the creek.

May 24, 6:30 p.m. Board Meeting – Contact Wanda Manley, cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com, if you would like to participate in helping to plan chapter activities.

May 27, 7:00 a.m. Country Club 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.

April 2022 CHPAS Calendar

Sandhill Cranes at Table Mountain

So many exciting activities are happening in April! First and foremost, migration is underway! Every day, Laramie, Platte, and Goshen Counties welcome birds flying north from as far away as South America. The Sandhill Cranes (left) are likely part of the Rocky Mountain population and winter in New Mexico, Arizona, and Mexico. April, May, and June are prime birding months in our region so get out there and enjoy this incredible opportunity. Not sure where to go? Check out our website (locations) for prime birding areas in our three-county area.

As always, more details are available in our monthly “Flyer” newsletter.

Calendar

April 16, 6:00 a.m. – Field Trip for Sharp-tailed Grouse Lek Viewing, We will meet at the Pilot Truck Stop in the front parking lot (off I-80 Exit 367, also known as the WHR exit, 8020 Campstool Road) for departure at 6:00 a.m. sharp. It is about a 40-mile drive to the lek area. We will be driving east on I-80 then north to an area north of Hillsdale. We hope to see grouse dancing on their lek as well as other spring prairie birds.

We will carpool to the lek site to keep the number of vehicles to a minimum. The outing will be about three hours, so we should be back to the truck stop by 9 a.m. 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.

Greater Sage Grouse Photo by Pete Arnold

April 19, 7:00 p.m. – Program: “Greater Sage-Grouse – The Largest Conservation Effort in U.S. History: The Ups and Downs,” given by Daly Edmunds, Audubon Rockies Policy and Outreach Director, and Vicki Herren, retired Bureau of Land Management National Sage-Grouse Coordinator. This presentation will be held at the Cottonwood Room at the Laramie County Library, 2200 Pioneer Ave. It can also be accessed virtually by using this Zoom link: Sage Grouse.

April 26, 6:30 p.m. – Board Meeting

             Contact Wanda Manley, cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com, if you would like to participate in helping to plan chapter activities.

April 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.

April 29, 7:00 p.m. – “Bird Photography Using Blinds with Elizabeth Boehm”

This special presentation will be held at the Trout Room of the Wyoming Game and Fish Department headquarters at 5400 Bishop Road.

Award-winning Pinedale, Wyoming, wildlife photographer Elizabeth Boehm will be presenting a free talk open to the public. She will discuss different blinds and how to position, set up and use them as well as blind etiquette. She will end with a slide show of her photography.

Elizabeth Boehm has been photographing birds for more than 20 years and spends most of her time exploring and birding Sublette County, Wyoming. She is always seeking unique images of birds and wildlife in a natural setting. Using blinds, her goal is to be able to approach her subject a bit closer and to capture natural behavior.

Redhead. Photo by Elizabeth Boehm

She is an award-winning photographer having placed in the Top 10 photos in the North American Nature Photography Association Showcase, first place in the 2019 National Audubon professional bird photo contest, and grand prize in the Wyoming Wildlife Photo Competition along with numerous images published in books and magazines.             

The next day (April 30th), just us at 7:00 a.m. for a Free Workshop “Bird Photography Using Blinds Demonstrations with Elizabeth Boehm”. This event will take place at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens’ Paul Smith Children’s Village, 710 S. Lions Park Drive. Boehm will demonstrate various kinds of blinds and she will discuss any other tools needed for comfort and working with the weather conditions.

April 30, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. – Spring Bird Identification: “Meet the Birds!” a class for adults and children 12 and older (Bring your own lunch) at Cheyenne Botanic Gardens Paul Smith Children’s Village and Lions Park (some walking will be included). Registration required: $15 via Cheyenne Botanic Gardens. Class limited to 40 participants. Registration is required via https://bpt.me/5390763  or the Botanic Gardens. Just before the peak of migration, let Cheyenne Audubon members introduce you to 50 of our local birds. A combination of classroom discussion and short walks into Lions Park, a Wyoming Important Bird Area, with borrowed binoculars or your own, will make spring so much more interesting for you.

Sandhill Crane Migration in Full Swing!

The Crane Cam at Rowe Sanctuary is an amazing way to view the annual spring migration of the Sandhill Crane (and many other birds) from the comfort of your home, no matter where you may live. The cranes fly in at dusk and leave the Platte River early in the morning, so these are the best times to witness the migration through the Crane Cam. Be sure to listen to the sound too – that is an integral part of the experience!

Rowe Sanctuary Crane Cam 03.16.22

To see photos taken by the Audubon Explore camera, check out “Gallery“. The sunsets at Rowe are beyond belief. If you can, visit in person (Rowe is about 5 hours east of Cheyenne) but if you can’t, enjoy these wonderful photos today! And please consider supporting Audubon’s Rowe Sanctuary if you can. They are integral partners in wildlife and habitat conservation along the Platte River.

Worthy of an artist’s palette – Rowe Sanctuary Crane Cam

March 2022 CHPAS Calendar

Mountain Bluebird

Just today, we received a report that Mountain Bluebirds were spotted at Curt Gowdy State Park. A sure sign that spring is near! While our region could use more snow, this week has been a refreshing break from the below-zero temperatures that we experienced in late February.

Waterfowl counts at Loess Bluffs National Wildlife Refuge (north of Kansas City, MO) report over 800,000 Snow Goose present during the week of February 28th, 2022. The annual migration of Sandhill Cranes will follow soon. For those of you who haven’t seen this amazing migration, be sure to get out and enjoy this wonderful time of year!

More details about all of our events, as well as future events, may be found in the March 2022 issue of “Flyer“, the Chapter newsletter.

Calendar

Mason Lee with migrating tiger salamander.

March 15, 7:00 p.m. – Program: “The Secret Life of Wyoming’s Salamander” with Mason Lee from the University of Wyoming Biodiversity Institute. Cottonwood Room at the Laramie County Library, 2200 Pioneer Ave. Lee will introduce Wyoming’s only salamander species as well as the new Laramie Salamander Migration Initiative aimed at protecting salamanders in Laramie and other Wyoming communities. Join in person or by Zoom (link: Wyoming’s Salamander).

Ring-necked Pheasant by Mark Gorges

March 19, 8:00 a.m. – Field trip – Tour of the Wyoming Game & Fish Pheasant Facility near Yoder and birding in that area. We will leave from the Lions Park parking lot by the Children’s Village at the Cheyenne Botanic Gardens at 8 a.m. Carpooling may be available based on Covid guidelines. We will drive north on US-85 about 66 miles to the intersection with County Road 42. Just to the west is the entrance to the pheasant facility where we will start our guided tour. Afterwards, participants may join us for birding at various nearby locations. We should return to Cheyenne at about 3:00 p.m. Please contact Grant Frost (307-343-2024) if you wish to join us.

March 22, 6:30 p.m. – Board Meeting, Windflower Room, Laramie County Public Library, 2200 Pioneer Ave., Cheyenne. Contact Wanda Manley, cheyenneaudubon@gmail.com, if you would like to participate in helping to plan chapter activities.

March 25, 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.

February 22 CHPAS Calendar

Buffalo Grass CloseupThanks to everyone who attended the 2022 Habitat Hero Workshop held at LCCC (and via Zoom) on Saturday, January 29th.  Materials from the workshop are posted on the Habitat Hero page of the CHPAS website.  At left, Buffalo Grass as an option to traditional Kentucky Bluegrass.  Learn more about this and other sessions on the CHPAS Habitat Hero page!

Calendar

Cheyenne Audubon’s Feb. 15 program about pronghorn and the I-80 barrier.

Ben Robb
Ben Robb

The public is welcome to a free talk Feb. 15, 7 p.m., in the Cottonwood Room of the Laramie County Library, 2200 Pioneer Ave. concerning pronghorn migration and habitat and the barrier I-80 presents.  Here is the Zoom Link for the program.

Speaker Ben Robb, currently a research ecologist for the U.S. Geological Survey’s Fort Collins Science Center, studied the impacts of Interstate 80 on pronghorn migration and crucial habitat for his master’s degree at the University of Wyoming. His study predicts the best corridors to restore pronghorn movement.

Pronghorn I_80
Photo Courtesy of Ben Robb

Cheyenne Audubon offering Weld County, Colorado, “Raptor Alley” field trip Feb. 19, 8:00 a.m.

Members of Cheyenne Audubon invite  the public to caravan with them Feb. 19 for a road trip to Weld County, Colorado, to look for hawks and eagles along “Raptor Alley” with “The Nunn Guy,” Gary Lefko.

American Kestrel
American Kestrel by Mark Gorges

The group will leave from the parking lot in Lions Park next to the Children’s Village at 8 a.m., expecting to return about 1 p.m. though participants providing their own vehicles may leave at any time. Round trip is expected to be 100 miles. Participants should bring water, snacks and dress for the weather. There will be a minimal amount of walking.

Please call Mark at 307-287-4953 to register so as to be on the list to be contacted if plans change.

February 18-21 – The 25th Great Backyard Bird Count

Each February, for four days, the world comes together for the love of birds. Over these four days people are invited to spend time in their favorite places watching and counting as many birds as they can find and reporting them to us. These observations help scientists better understand global bird populations before one of their annual migrations.  To learn more, visit Great Backyard Bird Count.

February 22, 6:30 p.m. – Board Meeting, Sage 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.

February 25, 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.

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.