Birds of Southern Wisconsin Field Course

Birds of Southern Wisconsin (A UWM Field Station Workshop)

June 10 - June 14 (Tuesday - Saturday)

William Mueller is the Director of the Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory, and Project Coordinator for the Milwaukee BIOME Project.
Dr. Owen Boyle is the state coordinator for the Wisconsin Citizen-based Monitoring Network and an ecologist with WDNR.
Tim Vargo is the Manager of Research and Citizen Science at Milwaukee’s Urban Ecology Center, and is a federally licensed bird bander.

This course is a five-day-long field trip that visits important breeding bird areas of southern Wisconsin. The course begins at 9:00 am, Tuesday, 6/10, and finishes by mid afternoon Saturday, 6/14. Some days require a very early start (~4:20 am) to be in the field for the peak of bird song. A few evening sessions will allow us to study nocturnal bird species. We will also conduct several early morning bird banding demonstrations. Travel by van to each subsequent day’s location will take place in the late afternoon and early evening.

The Course:
This course is a broad, field-based survey of the breeding birds of Wisconsin and the habitats in which they are found. We will study breeding birds and their habitats in wetlands, grasslands, and forests in state natural areas, state and federal wildlife areas, and major plant communities throughout southern Wisconsin. Our objective is to find the majority of Wisconsin’s southern breeding bird species and learn about their ecology, distribution, behavior, and conservation. We will also demonstrate field research and monitoring techniques. Participants will learn the basics of plant community associations which is key to understanding where bird species are found during the breeding season and how to assess their habitat needs for effective conservation and management. The course fee covers all transportation costs and lodging.

$575. Available for 5.0 CEU or 1 college credit. There is an additional tuition fee for college credit.

For more information please visit:




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International Migratory Bird Day

2014 IMBD LogoSaturday, May 3, 2014
7am to 1pm
Free and Open to the Public

At the Forest Beach Migratory Preserve
4970 Country Club Road
Port Washington, WI 53074

7am to 11am, Birding Hikes - Forest Beach Migratory Preserve
William Mueller, Director of the Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory,
Andrew Struck, President of the Milwaukee Audubon Society and Sarah Warner from the US Fish & Wildlife Service will lead bird hikes from the FBMP Club House. Hikes will begin every half hour.

8am, Discussion - Why Birds Matter
The theme of International Migratory Bird Day 2014 is "Why Birds Matter" and Carl Schwartz, state coordinator for Bird City Wisconsin, will provide background on the Bird City Wisconsin initiative, which continues to grow in Ozaukee County with the recent recognition of Port Washington.

8:30am, Bird Counts - Coal Dock Park in Port Washington
Join Mayor Tom Mlada, Mark Feider, biologist and Patti Lemkuil, Port Washington Environmental Committee for a bird
count at Coal Dock Park. Opened in 2013, the former We Energies coal dock now serves the public as green space on the shores of Lake Michigan. Learn about the transformation and the importance of this new park as a migratory stop- over site.
(Note: this is the only event not scheduled at Forest Beach Migratory Preserve).

9am, Discussion - Lead Impacts on Bald Eagles
In 2012, 58 bald eagles were found dead in the states of Wisconsin, Iowa, and Minnesota. The large majority of these
deaths were attributed to lead poisoning. Sarah Warner from the US Fish & Wildlife Service will discuss lead toxicity to birds and the findings of her research study.

10am, Exhibit - Live Raptors
Pine View Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center admits birds of prey, reptiles, and predatory mammals.
Jeannie Lord, Executive Director, will include live birds in her presentation and introduce the audience to these amazing animals and the threats they face.

11am, Discussion - Transformation from Coal Dock to City Park
The transformation from a We Energies coal dock to a park was no small feat. Representatives from the Port Washing-
ton Environmental Committee will discuss the process and share future plans to make the City a more environmentally friendly community.

12pm, Presentation - Lake Michigan Off-Shore Bird Observations
For decades, migratory patterns along the Lake Michigan Shoreline have been monitored from shore or on boats just
off shore. Over the past four years William Mueller, Director of the Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory has been conducting a bird monitoring effort several miles into Lake Michigan using small planes. This first of its kind study is revealing amazing new information about the migratory patterns of birds.

1pm, Presentation - "Birders, the Central Park Effect"
This HBO video presentation of a diverse group of full-of-attitude New Yorkers reveals how a hidden world of beautiful wild birds in the middle of Manhattan has upended and magically transformed their lives.

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Preseason Gatherings

We have lots of interesting things planned for 2014 and we’ll tell you all about them at our two preseason volunteer meetings:

7:30pm, Tuesday, March 25 in Cedaburg at the BMO Harris Community room
N69 W5289 Columbia Road, Cedarburg, WI 53012 map

10am, Saturday, March 29 in West Bend 
200 Wisconsin Street, West Bend, WI 53095 map

We bring the snacks…you bring the inspiration. Here’s a preview:

1. We’ll create a shrubland habitat at the Kratzsch Conservancy in Newburg.
2. We’ll finish our Hames Preserve enhancement in Waubeka – water access, parking, prairie planting, the works.
3. We’ll plant 500 trees and shrubs at nine different preserves.
4. We’ll finish our water access point at Bratt Woods in Grafton.
5. We’ll plant a prairie, trees and wildflowers at the Sauk Creek Nature Preserve in Port Washington.

That’s just a sample…if we told you everything you might not come to one of the meetings!

For more information email Mike Hoffer at or call him at 910-612-1909

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A New Easement Already! March Open Spaces

The March E-news is here. Hurray!

...and we're proud to announce that we acquired a new easement already. Click on the image to view.

20yr enews logo

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Open Spaces: 2013 In Retrospect

OK, OK, it took us a month and a half to put together our 2013 Review..

...We had a lot to talk about!

We hope you enjoy it. You can read it here by clicking on the image or stop into our office in West Bend to pick up a copy of your own.

Open Spaces Cover

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