Birder's Guide

MAY 2014

Birder's Guide is the American Birding Association's newest publication. Each issue focuses on a key subject, providing tips from experienced birders on a wide variety of topics like Travel, Listing & Taxonomy, Gear, and Conservation & Community.

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Page 19 of 51

18 Birder's Guide to Conservation & Community | May 2014 Conservation Milestones are fnanced by the alliance via the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Urban Bird Treaty program, and are installed by the city of Chicago's community landscap- ing and job-training Greencorps Chi- cago program. Find out more about the alliance, view site planting lists and updates, and contact Pollock directly at the alliance's website . Mike Hudson: To a Knot –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Eighteen-year-old Mike Hudson has focused on the connections between birding and conservation since his grandfather—a great outdoorsman and artist—frst inspired Hudson's interest in birds 10 years ago. In middle school, Hudson learned about the 20,000-mile annual migration of the Red Knot and was suitably impressed. After doing a bit of research, he discovered that knot pop- ulations are crashing in the eastern U.S., and decided to do something to help. Hudson enlisted several friends and formed an after-school club to study Red Knot conservation, inviting in a local ornithologist and environmental lobbyist to learn about the bird's biol- ogy and threats to its survival. Subspe- cies rufa, which migrates between the Arctic Circle and Tierra del Fuego, re- lies on horseshoe crab eggs during its journey up the East Coast of North America each spring, but, as Hudson discovered, the crabs have often been overharvested for bait. His club drafted a letter asking that rufa be listed as en- dangered, encouraged his entire school community to sign the letter on Earth Day, and sent it to the U.S. Department of the Interior. Hudson's group then participated in a Red Knot banding event in Cape May, New Jersey; witnessed the opening of the DuPont Nature Center, Delaware, at one of the Atlantic Coast's largest horse- shoe crab spawning sites; testifed at a hearing about proposed changes in crab harvest quotas; and won the youth divi- sion of the Delaware Bird-A-Thon while raising money for shorebird habitat. The rufa Red Knot was offcially proposed for listing under the Endangered Spe- cies Act in September 2013, and Hud- son, helped by his tech-savvy brother, organized two online petitions which at- tracted hundreds of signatures—includ- ing those of many ABA members. "For helping me to fnd the joy that is birding," Hudson says, helping the Red Knot "was the least that I could do." Keep up with Friends of the Red Knot at . Gallus Quigley: A Subdivision Apart –––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––– Minneola, Florida, resident Gallus Quig- ley has gone native—and he's persuaded his whole neighborhood to join him. Like many people, Quigley lives in a subdivision. The landscaping in such communities usually isn't very enticing to birds, but Quigley wanted to change things up when he bought his home in October 2009. He envisioned a wildlife refuge of native plants. The problem was how to get his neighbors to go along with it. Quigley became involved in the homeowners' as- sociation that governed the subdivision, was elected secretary, and fnally persuaded the as- sociation to embrace native plants for future landscaping. It took more than two years of work, and it helped that Quig- ley could show other homeowners how he had successfully landscaped his own yard with native plants. "Seeing something new makes it less scary," he says. Quigley explained to the other homeown- ers the benefts of native plants, such as less water use, lower maintenance Greencorps Chicago members, including Judy Pollock, complete a "Migratory Makeover" at Chicago State University to provide food and shelter for migrating birds. Photo © Karel Jacobs Inspired by his grandfather, Mike Hudson, shown here banding shorebirds with his sister, Emily, has dedicated himself to Red Knot conservation. Photo © Gail Hudson 2-Conservation Milestones.indd 18 5/22/14 7:34 PM

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