Sale and Open House
Adopt-a-Hummer For Christmas
Point Hawk Watch Ends 14th Season
Monthly Bird Banding at GCBO
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or volunteering for one of our many outreach activities.
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for more opportunities to support our conservation efforts.
Photos courtesy of Mike Gray and GCBO staff.
View on GCBO website.
Year End Appeal
Steep declines in 42 common
species over the past 40 years have resulted in the loss of 800 million
birds from nearly all terrestrial habitats.
Conservation of migratory
birds requires coordinated actions throughout their life cycle. For our
part, the Gulf Coast Bird Observatory (GCBO) works to monitor, access, and
prevent avian losses during their migration cycle. Because we have long-term
partnerships located in the U.S., Mexico, and South America we are
protecting our terrestrial and avian resources. But we need the support of
everyone who appreciates the value of birds for their role in supporting the
sustainability of our planet. Your year-end gift of any amount will enable
us to continue to work with our partners throughout the Western Hemisphere
to save habitat and our shared birds of the Americas.
Read more or
your donation now.
December 9th, join us at The Grape Taste from 6:00 until 8:00pm, for a wine
tasting to benefit GCBO. Deborah Wassberg, owner of The Grape Taste Wine Bistro,
has selected a very special wine and cheese pairing for this exclusive
event. Adding to the holiday fun will be a silent auction and door prizes.
Tickets are $40 per person. Due to the limited capacity of the restaurant,
reservations will be restricted to the first 60 people; Adults only please.
Reba (979-480-0999) to make your reservation and to purchase tickets.
who loves birds? Consider our Adopt-a-Hummingbird program for Christmas.
We banded over 200 Ruby-throated Hummingbirds during the fall migration this
year and many of them remain un-adopted. You can help support GCBO's
efforts on behalf of the birds by adopting one of these gems for your favorite
bird lover as a Christmas present. Adoptions are $20 and you will receive
a certificate like the one pictured above with the information for your
particular hummingbird. If the bird is recaptured, we will let you know when and
Contact us today to be part of this exciting project and help support the
birds for Christmas!
Smith Point Hawk Ends
The Smith Point Hawk Watch ended it's 14th season on
November 15 and we bid good-bye to our two fantastic hawk
watchers, Jennifer Ottinger and Leah Vader. Our total raptor
count at Smith Point was one of the lowest during our 14
year history, mostly due to the extremely low Broad-winged
Hawk tally this fall. Year in and year out Broad-winged
Hawks make up about the same number as all other species
combined at Smith Point. We are not overly concerned by the
low total. No inferences about population status can be
made from a single season’s hawk watch (and our last year’s
count of Broad-wings was a record high). Wind patterns may
shift the flight path a few miles inland and prevent many
flocks from being funneled down to The Point. Late in the
season Jen and Leah spotted not one, but a record-tying two
beautiful Golden Eagles. We would like to thank Bill Saulman
for his continued support and Cliff Peterson for many hours
of volunteer hawk counting. Joseph Kennedy photographically
documented some of our more outstanding raptors, including
both Golden Eagles and some record late Mississippi
Kites. Joe and Annette Whitehead provided many kindnesses to
our hawk watchers and continued their long role of
supporting the SPHW locally. We would also like to thank our
sponsors: Houston Endowment, U.S. Fish & Wildlife - Coastal
Program, The Trull Foundation, Ornithology Group of Houston
Outdoor Club, and Bill Saulman. If you would like to volunteer
to count raptors or otherwise support the Smith Point Hawk
Watch next year, please contact
Farewell to John
There really aren't any words adequate for this news item. John
Arvin, our intrepid Research Coordinator, has decided to retire on
December 31st of this year. John has spent the last 6 years
directing several major research projects at GCBO including the
Texas Ivory-billed Woodpecker Study, the Smith Point Hawk Watch, our
year long sand plover study, and most recently a status assessment
for the Rasberry Crazy Ant in Brazoria County. Over the years John
has shared his knowledge and love of tropical birds with many of us
who he led into the wilds of South America on tours to Ecuador,
Peru, Brazil and Cuba. While we will miss him very much, all of us
at GCBO wish him well on his next life adventure. Be sure to keep an
eye open for him while you're out in the field birding as he will
have much more time for that come January! Don't forget to call or
come by the office to bid your adieu.
Monthly Bird Banding at GCBO
Join us from 8:00 until noon on Saturday,
December 18th for our monthly bird banding
session. Learn from GCBO Research Associates Robert & Kay Lookingbill
as they band the birds
and explain how to determine the species, age, and sex of birds
in the hand. Our winter residents should be back and you never
know what might turn up in the nets! Come out and see what surprises are in store
for us. This is a
great way to get kids excited about wildlife, but all ages
are welcome. See the
map on our webpage for directions. Note that
mapquest and googlemaps will not guide you to the right
place using our address.