Audubon Response To Members Survey: Science

Western Bluebird

This past September, your Chapter conducted a survey of the membership to ascertain what the members think about a variety of topics. The purpose of this survey was to help direct the Board in its efforts to serve our members.

While a detailed summary of the survey results has already been published (http://northernarizonaaudubon.org/Survey2018/Membership%20Survey%202018.pdf),this is the first in a small series of articles that focus on specific topics that were covered in the survey. The idea is inform our members as to your Chapter’s activities relative to your feedback.

Science

Nature Photography

The survey revealed that 46% of respondents wished to participate in a NAAS science related project. On a related note, 31% said that they were currently involved in a science related activity within their community. Clearly, there is a strong interest by our members in citizen science(only a few members are professional scientists).

So what is NAAS doing in the world of citizen science?Firstly, our Christmas Bird Count program is about to start and it has historically involved several dozen members each year. Most of you are already familiar with the CBC but for those who have never tried participating, you are missing out on a fun time. There are three counts in the Verde Valley and one in Flagstaff. Contact Rich Armstrong (richarmstrong@q.com)if you wish to join.

A new science project for NAAS is our participation in a larger Audubon Climate Watch program. In 2014, National Audubon released a landmark report on the impact of climate change on bird populations across North America. This report used existing data and climate change models to predict what was going to happen to over 600 species.

Now the next step is to monitor bird populations to see if these predictions are accurate. Of course, climate change is having an evolving impact on birds so we need to regularly survey select species to track the real world facts.

In our area, White-breasted Nuthatches are the identified species and this past spring a group of volunteers surveyed this species in both the Verde Valley and the Flagstaff areas. Our data was submitted to Audubon at a national level and we intend to repeat this survey again this coming January. If you are interested, contact Amy Zimmermann at amzimme@msn.com.

  • Brent Bitz