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Taking Wing for Klamath Bird Observatory

The Mail Tribune introduces the Klamath Bird Observatory and its latest accomplishment of receiving the U.S. Forest Service’s National Taking Wing Award with one of its partners, Redwoods Sciences Laboratory in Arcata, CA. This is the first time the Taking Wing Award has been awarded to an organization that focuses on land bird research. This award was received due to KBO’s research to better understand wetland ecosystems and habitat relationships. One technique KBO uses to monitor bird populations is through bird banding. To do this, mist nests made of thin nylon are set up 15 minutes prior to sunrise then checked ever half-hour for five hours. When a bird is caught it is safely taken out and examined for information  such as age, sex and body fat, which cannot be obtained through other monitoring techniques. The common yellowthroat is one bird banded at the field station, this is also a bird that depends on wetland habitat, which have been readily drained on the West Coast due to agriculture and development. On of KBO’s challenging goals is “to keep common birds common” states John Alexander, the Executive Director of KBO. He sees the Taking Wings Award as a step towards “all bird conservation” and away from the split between research on land and water birds. To read the full article and learn about the birds banded at the monitoring station click here.