December Meeting and Program Annual Slide Show and Potluck Dinner
Tuesday, Dec 10th 6:45 Potluck; 7:30 Program Padilla Bay Interpretive Center 10441 Bayview Edison Road Mt. Vernon, Washington
Our annual December potluck and slide show will once again feature photos and videos submitted by you! Please send your pictures and videos to email@example.com. Pictures should be in .jpg format with a resolution of about 5 mb. Videos should be in Quicktime format or .mp4, and less than 1 minute (actually, any video format that works on Mac). Also, please include the who, what, where and when, so Ronan can introduce your presentation. Finally, please have your pictures and videos submitted to Ronan no later than Dec. 3rd. Questions? Please contact Ronan directly.
Please bring potluck food to share. Plates, utensils and paper products will be supplied. After the meal we will view favorite nature photos ~ a collective view of how Skagit Audubon Society members see nature both here and abroad.
This is not a contest but an opportunity to share our favorite nature photos and videos.
Conservation Report, December 2019
Protecting local heronries through Critical Area Ordinances:The Growth Management Act requires Washington cities and counties to each have a Critical Areas Ordinance (CAO) regulating development near wetlands, steep slopes, and certain other areas. The CAO can also protect habitat for specified wildlife species. It can, for example, specify restrictions around the communal nesting sites of Great Blue Herons. This species is of special note in Skagit County because herons are so abundant here, attracted to the rich feeding opportunities in the bays and fields plus the availability of nesting sites. With over 700 nests, the March Point heronry may well be the second largest on the U.S. West Coast. There are also several smaller heronries in Skagit County, many located on land owned by the Skagit Land Trust. Skagit Land Trust staff and volunteers are working through the long process of modifying the CAOs of Anacortes and Skagit County to protect these important sites. Public meetings are scheduled for Dec. 17 at 6 pm (no public testimony) and Jan. 21, 2020 (public testimony taken) in the Commissioners’ Hearing Room (1800 Continental Place, Mt. Vernon). Showing up will show public support for protecting heronries in the face of likely opposition from certain commissioners. Anacortes will hold a similar meeting in the future.
The brush pile won’t be the most colorful feature in your yard but it may well be one of the busiest places. Easy to build with logs, branches, brush, and garden clippings of all types, the brush pile can be a self-sustaining mini-ecosystem for years to come. Even a small brush pile tucked away in the corner of the yard or garden is a hive of year-round activity. Decaying wood releases carbon more slowly than a burning brush pile and also draws insects and potentially nesting Mason Bees. Birds and other critters are drawn to the insects and the shelter provided within the pile. Large logs and branches may take years to decay but smaller limbs, brush and leaves will decay quickly so replenishment can occur at any time of the year. Birds like Towhees and Pacific Wrens may choose to set up housekeeping and raise a family if the pile is off the main path of human activity. Tracks left in mud or snow can tell you who has visited the pile. During the Snowmageddon of Feb., 2019, tracks around and into one of our brush piles revealed the following visitors: raccoon, skunk, opossum, rabbit, birds and bobcat. Pile It Up! - Mary
The Education Committee needs volunteers to help with a number of adult presentations coming up in the next several months. These Power Point presentations are scheduled at libraries and private organizations/clubs in the area. If you can help give part of a presentation (already written), that would be great; or, you can assist with the computer and help answer questions from the audience. If you can lend a hand, please contact Sheila at firstname.lastname@example.org
Skagit Audubon Society holds monthly meetings on the second Tuesday of each month except for the months of July and August. We meet at 7:00 pm at Padilla Bay Interpretive Center(Google map), 10441 Bayview-Edison Rd. Mount Vernon. Meetings are open to all.
The board of directors meets at the same location at 7:00 pm on the first Tuesday of each month, except for the months of July and August.