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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

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GCBO Febraury News
Gulf Coast Bird Sanctuary

February, 2010




In this Issue:


TFFF Acquisition in Sierra Gorda


Birding Classic 2010 - Time to Register


Quintana Sanctuary Gets a Facelift


Beginning Birder Workshop


Whooping Crane Festival


Great Backyard Bird Count


Monthly Bird Banding at GCBO


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Photos courtesy of Mike Gray, Greg Lavaty, Roberto Pedraza, and GCBO staff.
View on GCBO website.

February 2010

TFFF Acquisition in Sierra Gorda

GCBO is happy to announce another land acquisition through our Tropical Forest Forever Fund in support of our partners at the Sierra Gorda Biosphere Reserve in Quer?taro, Mexico. In February we will provide $15,000 to help purchase 98 acres of land that lies between two of the most valuable core areas of the Reserve, Cańada de las Avispas and Barranca de Paguas. This area is covered by pine-oak and cloud forests that support habitat for many species of endangered and/or endemic flora and fauna including the Bearded Wood-Partridge and the Singing Quail. As an endemic to cloud forests, the Singing Quail counts on the Reserve as its most important long-term refuge since this forest is one of the few remaining compact areas not affected by clearing and fragmentation. This property will be added to the Private Reserve Network in the area of Hoya Verde which already operates successfully in the reserve. It is also adjacent to another tract of land previously purchased with Tropical Forest Forever Funds.

Birding Classic 2010 - Time to Register


It's already February, the Registration booklets for this year’s Classic have been mailed and Conservation Grant proposals are in for review. Whew. The Harlingen Convention and Visitor's Bureau is hosting the Awards Brunch and we are receiving proposals every day for the venue and host hotel. We are thrilled that this year’s Celebrity Master of Ceremonies is Father Tom Pincelli. We are putting the final touches on the Kids Corner where you can find ideas and help for mentoring a youth team. Look for a Birding Classic page on Facebook soon!  Help the birds and sign your team up today at

Quintana Sanctuary Gets a Facelift

On Saturday, January 23, we had a very successful workday to get the Quintana Neotropical Bird Sanctuary ready for spring migration.  Fifteen hard working volunteers helped GCBO staff clear dead trees, remove weeds, mow, and plant some new trees. Thanks everyone! Special thanks to Steve and Debbie Alongis for bringing their tractor to help us remove debris. We are also very excited to announce that in February the two water features will be rebuilt by the landscape experts at Enchanted Forest in Richmond so they should be in great shape to provide fresh water to all the thirsty migrants. We will be having a work afternoon on February 28 to plant new trees. Volunteers are welcome! We are also ready to schedule host volunteers for Spring Fling in April so give us a call or e-mail Reba if you are interested. 

Beginning Birder Field Class

On Saturday, March 20th, Susan Heath and John Arvin will lead a Beginning Birder Field Class from 8:00 to noon at GCBO for ages 12 and up. This workshop will focus on how to bird rather than bird identification beginning with a lesson on how to purchase and use binoculars. We will cover how to use a field guide, proper birding etiquette, where to look for birds, and the all important how to look for birds. Attendees will come away from this class knowing how to bird with proper equipment and how to use a field guide to identify birds when they find them. If you do not have binoculars, we will loan you some for the day! The cost is $40 for members and $60 for non-members (your fee entitles you to one year GCBO membership).  Call and reserve your spot today!  979-480-0999 

Whooping Crane Festival


Come by and visit with GCBO staff at our booth in Port Aransas February 25-28. We’ll be there promoting the Great Texas Birding Classic and updating visitors on recent GCBO accomplishments.  The Aransas National Wildlife Refuge is part of the Great Texas Coastal Birding Trail and winter home for the only wild migrating flock of Whooping Cranes. In 1941, this flock numbered only 15 cranes, but by 2009 had grown to 247 thanks to extensive conservation efforts. The Port Aransas celebration of Whooping Cranes offers an abundant variety of speakers, field trips along with boat, bus, and hayride tours. Visit the Whooping Crane Festival website for more information.

Great Backyard Bird Count

Mark your calendar for February 12-15, 2010 and participate in the 13th annual Great Backyard Bird Count sponsored by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Audubon. Although it's called the Great Backyard Bird Count, you can count birds at any location you choose including your favorite park or wildlife refuge including all of our Site Partner locations. This year we would like to have a volunteer count at each of our Site Partner sites!  Review our Site Partner map and let Sue know where you would like to count, then when you submit your checklist e-mail us a copy. This free event helps Cornell and Audubon learn more about how our birds are doing and how to protect them.  Last year, citizen scientists submitted more than 93,600 checklists online, creating the continent's largest instantaneous snapshot of bird populations ever recorded. Anyone can take part, from novice bird watchers to experts, counting birds for as little as 15 minutes or as long as you want on one or more days of the event.  For more information on the count and to register go to

Monthly Bird Banding at GCBO

Join us from 8:00 until noon on Saturday, February 27th for our monthly bird banding session.  Watch as GCBO Research Associates Robert & Kay Lookingbill band the birds and explain how to determine the species, age, and sex of birds in the hand.  We've already caught several winter returnees from previous years and are hoping for more this month.  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.

NOTE: Our February and March bird banding will be on the fourth Saturday of the month (the 27th in both cases) and April bird banding will be on the second Saturday of the month (the 10th).

  | Telephone 979-480-0999 | Contact Us


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