Nature Notes - February 2017
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American Robin
Male and Female Buffleheads/Dennis Burnette

 Audubon Ambassador Training March 11

You love birds.
You want to join a community working together to help support more resilient bird populations, making real and lasting change – for birds, for ourselves, and for future generations.  Become an Audubon Ambassador to make a difference right here at home.
A free Audubon Ambassador training session will be held  from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, March 11, Bur-Mil Park Clubhouse, 5834 Bur-Mil Club Road, Greensboro. All events are free. Lunch will be provided. Registration is required.
Join the Audubon Ambassador program to:

Volunteer to take action to protect birds as they face the impacts of global warming.
Get access to tools to help make concrete changes.
Help change or enact laws that protect birds and people.
Meet like-minded people in your community and across the state.
Be part of shaping the climate change conversation in North Carolina.Have lots of fun.

Audubon Ambassadors are a committed, passionate group of individuals who love birds and want to do more to protect birds in a changing climate.

Audubon Ambassadors volunteer their time to complete tasks that will help birds adapt to the effects of climate change.

We’ll ask you to help in three primary ways:

Be the Messenger - Share your love of birds, whether through your online network or with friends and family you see every day, and inspire people to take action to protect birds.
Be the Solution - Encourage people to plant a bird-friendly yard and volunteer to improve habitat.
Be an Advocate - Become a resource for others by hosting presentations, talking to your elected officials, and encouraging your community to take actions to protect birds.

Audubon has created meaningful, easy actions to help you protect birds. Learn the tools to have impactful conversations with your friends, families and communities about how climate change is affecting birds. We also have the right tools, so you can see how your actions add up to real protection for birds facing the effects of a changing climate.

By joining the Audubon Ambassador program you will get:

Tips and training on how to talk about climate change with family, friends and your community
Access to an exclusive Facebook group with climate change articles, tools, events and networking with your fellow Ambassadors
Update emails with concrete ways you can take action through quick ideas and long-term projects, and reports on the progress of the entire group
Access to Audubon Works, a password-protected site with climate tools and resources
Support from the Audubon North Carolina staff via email and conference calls

You MUST attend a training to become an Ambassador. Register here:

Bird Friendly Communities Tidbits

 By Stella Wear
TGPAS members continue to work on the planting at Innovation Cornerstone.  Because of cold weather, we canceled a date before Christmas for putting in plants that NCA&T had in their greenhouse.  The plants are now being housed in the A&T cold frames to harden off. A&T will need that space for other plants by March, so we will re-schedule the planting for February.  Please watch for announcements about the planting and join the work team.
* * *
It’s almost time for the Brown-headed Nuthatches to start their nest building.  They are scouting and feeding at feeders right now.
-- Dennis Burnette
Please check the BHNU houses you have installed to make sure you are ready for these special tenants.  If you have issues with wasps and other insects, remember to rub the box’s interior with Ivory soap.
* * *
Another bird of interest is the Audubon NC bird of 2016, the Chimney Swift. Chimney Swifts are in North Carolina from late March through October. You can help by locating chimneys that are possible roosting sites and reporting these sites to TGPAS.  Also, you may be interested in joining the Chimney Swift Team.  If so, contact Stella Wear at
* * *
TGPAS members participated in the Annual Green & Growin’ Show, the NC Nursery and Landscape Association’s trade show, held in January at the Greensboro Coliseum Complex.  At the Audubon NC booth, we had another great opportunity to talk with nursery owners and staff from across the state about why native plants matter to birds.
We got feedback on the program and the specific plants, gave them plant tags and brochures if they needed them, asked them for nominations for the 2018 plant list, and signed up others who were interested in participating in the program. The Green & Growin’ Show is a four-day event that showcases products in the Agriculture & Forestry industry. More than 100 exhibitors welcomed visitors to the show.

Frank Sink (below, left) of Frank's Perennial  Borders in Winston-Salem met with TGPAS member Sarah Gilley (right) at the Green & Growin' Show. Frank's business participates in Bird Friendly Communities program. (Photo by Ann Walter Fromson).

Hog Island Fun This Summer

Registration is now OPEN for Hog Island Audubon Camp's six-day birding and nature programs for adults, teens, and families!

The legendary camp in Maine offers perennial favorites such as Field Ornithology, Joy of Birding, and Raptor Rapture, along with new expanded weeks including Marine Natural History for Teens.

Take a look at the Hog Island website at for the full schedule and a detailed program.

TGPAS Board Email Addresses

Sarah Gilley
Judy Hoag
Jack Jezorek
Lynn Moseley
Marie Poteat
Courtenay Vass
Stella Wear
Tom Wear
Click here for our website
Click here for National Audubon website

Lynn Moseley shows a Turkey Vulture's wingspan/Dennis Burnette

Avian Superlatives - Biggest, Fastest, and More!

Who: Lynn Moseley, PhD., Professor Of Biology Emerita, Guilford College
What: February  Program
When: 7 p.m., Thursday Feb.. 9, 2017
Where: Kathleen Clay Edwards Family (KCEF) Branch Library, in Price Park, 1420 Price Park Drive, Greensboro,
Have you ever wondered what the biggest bird in North Carolina might be? 

Do you know which bird is the fastest, or lays the biggest egg, builds the biggest nest, or builds no nest at all? 

In this program, we’ll explore some “superlative birds” -- some found close to home and others from continents far away.  Lynn Moseley, who is presenting the program, has had many years to research and contemplate birds. She is Professor Of Biology Emerta at Guilford College, where she taught ornithology for many years. She also has led or taken part in birding tours around the world.

Please join us for a fun evening while we discover some amazing avian accomplishments

Winter Walk, Take Two –­

Or, If At First You Don't Succeed…
What: Second Sunday Nature Walk
When: 2 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 12
Where: Reedy Fork Creek Trail
Carpooling: Meet at 1:45 p.m. in front of Whole Foods at Friendly Center beneath the Sears sign facing Friendly Avenue

Our first try at a winter walk on some of Greensboro's watershed trails was snowed out in January; and so, we'll have another go at it this month.
This time our walk will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 12, on the Reedy Fork Trail, which runs parallel to, you guessed it, Reedy Fork Creek, between Lake Brandt Road and North Church Street. This trail is an easy one, mostly in the flood plain or along the low bluff along the creek.
As usual with our Second Sunday Walks, we'll meander along looking at whatever strikes our fancy, of the natural variety. Because the trails may be wet, wear appropriate foot gear.
We will gather at the usual place in Friendly Center in the Whole Foods parking lot beneath the Sears Plaza sign along Friendly Avenue at 1:45 for a 2 p.m. departure. Those who live north of town who wish to meet us at the trail should park at about 2:15 p.m. at the trailhead on Lake Brandt Road on the north side of the dam. Because parking is limited there, we hope most participants will choose carpooling from Friendly.
The winter woods are wonderful, allowing great perspectives of the lay of the land. Plan to join chapter members for this winter walk. And feel free to bring some friends, your binoculars, a bird book, as well as a plant guide, if you have them. We never know what we'll see.

Do Your Bit for Birds

February 17-20

By Ann Walter-Fromson

Each year for four days, people all over the world count birds that they see in their yards, parks, and neighborhoods. The Great Backyard Bird Count is a citizen science project of National Audubon Society, the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, and Bird Studies Canada held on Presidents’ Day weekend.

Data you provide by recording the birds you see helps scientists understand what’s happening with birds and helps in planning for bird conservation. Participating in the Great Backyard Bird Count is good for the birds and fun for you.

The Great Back Yard Bird Count (GBBC) this year will be on Friday, Feb. 17, through Monday, Feb. 20. You can count on one or all of the days, in your own back yard or in other places, by yourself or with a group. Just start a new list for each day, for each location where you count birds, and for the same location if you count birds at two different times of day.

Count birds for at least 15 minutes on one or more days of the GBBC and estimate the number of individuals of each species you saw during your count period.

To enter your results, first register for the count (you can do this ahead of time) or use your existing login name and password. You will already have an account if you created one for last year’s GBBC or if you are registered with eBird or another Cornell Lab citizen-science project such as FeederWatch. Once you are registered or logged in, click “Submit Observations” on the GBBC home page, and follow the instructions.

If you have a mobile device, you can download the free eBird Mobile app to enter your data. Any observations entered on eBird from Feb. 17 to Feb. 20 will count toward the GBBC.

GBBC offers two other free apps to assist you with bird identification: the Merlin Bird ID App With Photo ID and Audubon Bird Guide. The new photo ID feature on Merlin lets you submit a photo of a bird; then Merlin provides you a list of the most likely possibilities for identification. The Audubon Bird Guide provides sounds, images, and range maps for 821 North American birds.

Participating in the Great Backyard Bird Count is an easy way to make a positive difference for birds. Find a friend, neighbor, or family member to count with you and share the fun. This is a great way to introduce folks to birding. Anyone can count!

To register or for more information, go to

Free Documentary at Library Presents "Hometown Habitat" on Wednesday, Feb. 22

You are invited to attend a free showing of Hometown Habitat, a documentary focused on showing how and why native plants are critical to the survival and vitality of local ecosystems. The presentation will be held from 7-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 22, at Kathleen Clay Edwards Family Library, 1420 Price Park Road, Greensboro.
Renowned entomologist Douglas Tallamy, Ph.D., presents the narrative thread of this documentary. His research, books, and lectures about the use of non-native plants in landscaping sound the alarm about habitat and species loss.
Tallamy gives hope that “it is not yet too late to save most of the plants and animals that sustain the ecosystems on which we ourselves depend. Restoring native plants to most human-dominated landscapes is relatively easy to do.”
Those attending the documentary presentation can participate in a question-and-answer session with representatives from the NC Native Plant Society,
the T. Gilbert Pearson Audubon Society, and the
Piedmont Land Conservancy 

Free and open to public - invite your friends! 

The event sponsor
is the
Triad Chapter of the
 NC Native Plant Society (NCNPS). Contact the native plant society at Supporting the presentation is the Green Reads Nature Film and Book Club of the Kathleen Clay Edwards Family Library.
For more information about the program, contact Judy West, NCNPS
 Triad Chapter at
 Melanie Buckingham 
of Kathleen Clay Edwards Library at

Trout Lily/Dennis Burnette

Wednesday Wildflower Walks Begin March 16

Naturalist Ann Walter-Fromson will be leading a series of Wednesday morning wildflower walks at area parks, preserves, and watershed trails again this year.
You’re welcome to join in for any or all of these walks. Our first walk will be at Northeast Park on March 15, where we will search for Trout Lily and Spring Beauty on the Buffalo Creek Trail.
Mark your calendars for additional wildflower walks on March 29, and April 5, 12, 19, and 26. Be sure to check next month’s Nature Notes for information about our destinations for these walks.
We will meet for each trip at 9:30 a.m. in the Whole Foods parking lot at the area closest to Friendly Avenue, and carpool to our field trip site. We expect to return between 12:30 and 1 p.m., depending on the trip location.
Participants should wear sturdy, closed-toe walking shoes because trails may be muddy or slippery in places. Close-focus binoculars and a wildflower field guide would be helpful to have with you, as well as insect repellent (in warm weather), a camera, water, and a snack. No pets, please.
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TG Pearson Audubon Society · P.O. Box 10157 · Greensboro, NC 27404 · USA

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