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Author: Elva Manquera

PIF WWG Spring 2023

WWGThe Spring 2023 PIF WWG meeting will be held on April 25-27th, 2023, at the Desert National Wildlife Refuge Corn Creek Visitor Center. You can find more information and the meeting agenda HERE.

If you need to use the discount code, you can contact Elva at

We are looking forward to a productive, engaging meeting. Let me know if you have any questions about meeting logistics or the agenda: Jennifer Davis at

La reunión de primavera de 2023 del Grupo de Trabajo Occidental Compañeros En Vuelo (PIF WWG) se celebrará del 25 al 27 de abril en el Desert National Wildlife Refuge Corn Creek Visitor Center. Puede encontrar más información y la agenda de la reunión AQUÍ.

Si desea usar un código de descuento, puede ponerse en contacto con Elva al

Esperamos que la reunión sea productiva e interesante. Hágame saber si tiene alguna pregunta sobre la logística de la reunión o el orden del día: Jennifer Davis en

All Day Hawk and Duck Trip in the Klamath Basin

Join KBO board members Amanda Alford and Dick Ashford for an all-day outing on March 18th, where we’ll look at everything the Klamath Basin has to offer. Dick and Amanda will plan a route that will give us our best chances of seeing the varied birdlife for which “the basin” is famous. And, we’ll have lots of fun doing it!

You aren’t going to want to miss this waterfowl and raptor adventure!

This trip will be limited to 14 registrants, and we will carpool in 4 vehicles (max). The cost is $40 per participant, register below.

Klamath Bird Observatory (KBO) follows Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines and as such, KBO events are offered with COVID-19 safety as a primary concern. Proof of “up-to-date” vaccination will be required for all in-person participants. All individuals attending an event must also fill out KBO’s COVID Release Form and Waiver of Liability upon registration. Paper copies may also be available at an event upon advanced request. Please do not attend the event if you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

Bird Banding Program Manager Job Announcement

Klamath Bird Observatory seeks to fill a Bird Banding Program Manager position with primary responsibilities to support ongoing avian long-term monitoring and applied ecology studies that advance bird conservation. The Program Manager will oversee all aspects of our long-term (>25 years) bird banding program, which currently includes the operation of six constant-effort bird banding sites from May through October and the application of a regional dataset that represents decades of demographic data collection at over 50 locations. In addition, the Program Manager will provide project support for species-specific studies that include auxiliary marking (e.g., color-bands, data loggers, transmitters, etc.) and biological sampling (e.g., feathers, blood, cloacal swabs). Job duties include personnel management (e.g., recruitment, supervision, and ongoing banding training for a seasonal crew of domestic and international student interns); management of KBO’s multi-facility Upper Klamath Field Station; data management and quality control; statistical analyses; report and manuscript writing; community and scientific presentation; program development and grant writing, and ongoing partnership building. KBO’s banding field crew is based in the Upper Klamath Basin, Oregon, and fieldwork requires regular camping at remote banding sites. This position has split duty stations (six months in the Klamath Basin, Oregon, and six months in Ashland, Oregon) and requires regular travel throughout southern Oregon and northern California.

Job Title: Bird Banding Program Manager (Full Time)
Salary: $49,500 to $53,000 &15% cash benefit (in lieu of health coverage)
Location: Ashland, Oregon
Application Date: Posted February 1, 2023; Accepting applications until filled

To Apply

Please send a cover letter, resume, writing sample (report or manuscript), and three professional references to Jacob McNab (

Full Job Description 2023 KBO Job Announcement Banding Program Manager

Cover photo is a Western Bluebird taken by Frank Lospalluto.

Nest Searching Technician and Internship Available

KBO is looking to fill two positions Nest-Searching Technician and a Nest-Searching Intern for our Oregon Vesper Sparrow demography research program. We are contributing to a range-wide study to understand the causes of decline in this imperiled subspecies. Primary duties will include nest-searching and color-band resighting in meadows of the western Cascades and occasional data entry or other tasks based.

Oregon Vesper Sparrow with color bands (c) Frank Lospalluto
Oregon Vesper Sparrow with color bands (c) Frank Lospalluto

Over the last several years, KBO field crews spent their spring mornings diligently watching Vesper Sparrows go about their business. The birds typically arrive from their wintering grounds in mid to late April and begin to settle in for the summer breeding season. We have witnessed the males defending their territories and attracting mates, watched as they paired up and the females began nest building, and observed them incubating their eggs and raising their young (for an intern’s account of his experience nest-searching, read his blog on the KBO Call Note). Field crews have located over 100 nests! Preliminary findings suggest nest success is within the expected range for a ground-nesting bird and likely not a cause for concern, although late-season hail and snow in 2021 caused the failure of many nests. Changes in spring weather patterns may exacerbate threats to this species in high-elevation meadows.

Resighting efforts have taken place annually to keep track of how many of these banded birds survive and return to the area year after year. Early findings show lower return rates for juveniles, which is not surprising because young birds are more likely to leave home and disperse to a different site for their first breeding season. After resighting efforts are completed in 2023, we will estimate the annual survivorship of adult males and females and fledglings. Join us in the endeavor to understand the Oregon Vesper Sparrow!

The full job description for Nest-Searching Technician is available here.

The full job description for Nest-Searching Internship is available here. 

Nest-Searching Internship Announcement

Klamath Bird Observatory ( is seeking to fill a Volunteer Intern position in our Oregon Vesper Sparrow demography research program. We are contributing to a range-wide study to understand causes of decline in this imperiled subspecies. Primary duties will include nest-searching and color-band resighting in meadows of the western Cascades and occasional data entry or other tasks based out of our office in Ashland, Oregon.

The Intern will work with the Field Technician to conduct nest-searching and monitoring, color band resighting, and data entry. Previous experience in field research and the ability to see full range of colors are required. Training in specific field protocols will be provided. Ability to use your vehicle (typically on paved or improved dirt roads; 4WD is not necessary) and willingness to camp for the duration of the field season are required. We can provide suggestions for free rustic camping options near field sites.

Stipend: $1000/mo.
Duration: TBD – June 30, 2023 (exact dates TBD)
Primary Location: 40 min. east of Ashland, OR

To Apply

Send cover letter including your dates of availability and vehicle type, résumé, and contact info for 3 references by email to Dr. Sarah Rockwell ( We will review applications on a rolling basis, starting immediately and continuing until the position is filled.

Interns must be willing and able to adhere to health and safety guidelines during the COVID-19 pandemic throughout the duration of hire. Effective June 21, 2021, and until further notice, KBO will require that all Employees and Volunteer Interns be fully vaccinated for COVID‐19 and be able to provide proof of vaccination status.

2023 Full Job Description Intern Announcement

Bird and Banders Beyond Borders Intern Exchange Program Update

Klamath Bird Observatory is well known for its wide international reach, focusing on partnerships and capacity building across the ranges of our shared birds. KBO’s bird banding internship program has trained over 283 interns from more than 17 countries. The Mantiqueira Bird Observatory (OAMa) is a fruit of this capacity-building program, which is now running its own training program in Brazil. As part of the continued partnership between these two observatories, we are pleased to announce a new internship exchange program! After training in their home country, biologists will have the opportunity to visit and train at the other observatory. KBO will host a student from OAMa for three or six months each year, and OAMa will host a student from KBO for up to three months at their field station in Brazil, joining the local crew at the year-round bird monitoring on the Mantiqueira Highlands.

We are excited to share the first two interns participating in this program!

Otávio Rocha pictured to the left is OAMa’s Science Communication and Outreach Assitant. They will be traveling to KBO to train in the 2023 banding season.

“It is a great honor to participate in this exchange program as an OAMa representative. I am excited to start a new stage in my career and to apply all this rich experience in Brazilian biodiversity conservation initiatives.”




Victor Gonzalez, pictured on the right, was an intern in the 2022 banding season and will be traveling to Brazil to train with the OAMa staff as a KBO representative.

“The opportunity of this exchange internship is a blessing, being able to go to another bird observatory to learn from and work with. As a bird bander, it feels unreal going to a place you don’t know any of the birds, but at the same time, it feels like the best opportunity to try myself and keep improving in my professional career.”



Please help us support these amazing young scientists with a donation that will go to their travel and lodging. You can donate to the Avian Internship Memorial Fund. This fund was set up by the family and friends of Patricia Buettner to help support KBO’s long-running internship program.

These interns will also be supported by the FUNdraiser trip to Brazil happening April 12th-20th, 2023. There are only three spots left for this trip. The total cost is $5,000, due February 10th; this includes hotels, food (breakfast, lunch, dinner), and transportation (to and from the airport and during the trip). You can learn more HERE. 

This article first appeared in OAMa’s newsletter. You can sign up for their newsletter here. 

Vacation for Conservation

Join KBO’s dynamic duo Director of Conservation Jaime Stephens and Board President Shannon Rio for a memorable 9-day trip to Brazil, April 12th – 20th, 2023. This trip will be guided by past KBO intern and co-founder of Mantiqueira Bird Observatory (OAMa) Luiza Figueira. The cost of this trip includes hotels, food (breakfast, lunch, dinner), and transportation (to and from the airport and during the trip). The total cost of the trip is $5,000, $2500 to reserve your seat, and the total amount is due by February 10th. With 12 people attending these funds will cover a FULL YEAR of OAMa’s banding program. It will also be used to help support a student intern that is participating in KBO OAMa’s intern exchange program.

Click HERE for more information and registration. 

Start the new year off right, with HAWKS!

Looking for a New Years’ resolution? How about learning more about nature? Start by joining Dick Ashford for a talk and outing about hawks, some of nature’s most graceful creatures.

The talk will be hosted in person at the Klamath Bird Observatory office in Ashland, OR on January 5th, 6 pm – 8:30 pm.  Then, enjoy a day-long outing to the Klamath Basin on Jan 7th. We’ll depart Ashland at 8 AM and return around 5-ish. To afford everyone the best possible experience, attendance is limited. We will carpool (a must!) in 4 vehicles of 4 people each. Your seat will be confirmed upon receipt of your non-refundable, tax-deductible contribution of $75 per person.

You can learn more about this event and register here. 

Bear Creek Community Survey 2022 Update

Volunteers at Lynn Newbry (c) Emmalisa Whalley

The Bear Creek Community Bird Survey (BCCBS) has been an ongoing community science project for the past two years, 2021-2022. This survey aims to measure riparian bird abundance along Bear Creek between Ashland and Central Point, OR. This project was made possible by community scientists and by local partners Klamath Bird Observatory (KBO), Rogue River Watershed Council (RRWC), Rogue Valley Audubon Society, and Southern Oregon Land Conservancy.

These surveys are completed year-round, but data collected during the breeding season are KBO’s current focus of analysis. While migration and winter habitat are also essential for birds, it’s easier to obtain reliable bird counts during the breeding season because male birds sing consistently to attract mates and mark their territories. Survey data are collected and stored using eBird NW, an easy-to-use tool for community scientists and professional biologists to input bird sightings and contribute to a worldwide database.

Yellow Warbler (c) James Livaudais

The surveys were done at seven sites between Central Point and Ashland. Five of those sites were burned during the 2020 Almeda and Central Point Fires, providing a unique opportunity to observe the changes in bird populations immediately after a fire and long-term post-fire recovery. In spring 2021, there was a notable difference between birds considered habitat generalists and riparian specialists. American Robin, a ground-foraging generalist, was equally or more abundant in burned sites than unburned sites. At the same time, riparian specialists Yellow-breasted Chat and Yellow Warbler were much more common in unburned sites in the post-fire conditions of 2021. By 2022, there had been substantial regrowth of willow, ash, and cottonwood seedlings that these species can use as nesting and foraging habitat. American Robin abundance decreased, while Yellow-breasted Chat and Yellow Warbler increased or remained stable across most sites.

A set of 13 focal bird species were identified to help assess habitat quality along Bear Creek. The species used are expected to be common in a healthy riparian habitat in southern Oregon. In 2022, only one of the seven sites had ten or more focal species in sufficient numbers: North Mountain Park. This gave Bear Creek Greenway a poor rating. This isn’t unexpected with the Greenway being located in a relatively urban setting and the impact of the 2020 fires on riparian vegetation. This snapshot of Bear Creek riparian bird population health may improve with natural vegetation regrowth, and active restoration efforts are underway. Bear Creek Community Bird Survey data will provide a measuring stick for tracking future changes in bird populations that may occur due to ongoing restoration efforts (or adverse effects of habitat loss, climate change, etc.).

The results of this effort will be combined with other metrics collected by RRWC or other partners (water quality parameters, fish abundance, fish habitat accessibility, affordable housing, air quality, etc.) to create a Rogue River Basin Report Card that will be useful for tracking watershed and community conditions, as well as for community outreach. The first report card is scheduled for release in Spring 2023. In 2023, RRWC plans to expand the current survey to additional watersheds in the Rogue River Basin.

Cover photo was taken by Frank Lospalluto.