News Items


Citizen scientists and partner biologists conduct shorebird surveys throughout the Pacific Flyway each year between November 15th and December 15th.

Interested in Counting Shorebirds?

Citizen science is at the heart of the Pacific Flyway Shorebird Survey. Our hope is to recruit volunteers who are excited about taking ownership of a route and survey each year in order to contribute to the conservation of shorebirds and their habitats in the Pacific Flyway over the long term.

A Sideways Look at Clouds

Mountaineers Books Web Series, Episode 3
Thursday, September 21, from 7 – 8 p.m.

Join us for Episode 3 of Mountaineers Books Web Series with author Maria Rudd Ruth. Maria calls herself an accidental naturalist and has written more than a dozen books about natural wonders that, one, fascinated her and, two, she became obsessed with learning about. In this case, Maria’s current book, A Sideway Look at Clouds, shares her curiosity about clouds and what she’s learned about them—why there are so many variations, what they tell us, how far away they are,and why they are even there, among much more.

Maria is a captivating storyteller who blends science, wonder, and humor in ways that make natural phenomena understandable. You’ll have fun listening to her presentation and also learn things about clouds that you didn’t know before. If you’ve wanted to be able to identify clouds, understand what they’re doing up there, and how they affect you, this is the webinar for you.

“This book is a true delight: a beautifully written, lyrical account of the drama and mystery of clouds.”
–Richard Hamblyn, author, The Invention of Clouds

“Maria Mudd Ruth’s irresistible journey to understand, appreciate, and explain clouds somehow makes the daily sky more fascinating and beguiling. What a gift!”
¬–Jim Lynch, author, The Highest Tide and Before the Wind

(Register even if you can’t attend this evening and we will email a recording of the webinar to listen to whenever it’s convenient.)

Maria Mudd Ruth has been researching, watching, photographing, and blogging about clouds for many years. She is the author of more than a dozen books on natural history topics for young readers, general audiences, and accidental naturalists like herself. In2005, she published Rare Bird: Pursuing the Mystery of the Marbled Murrelet, a critically acclaimed natural history that was reissued in 2013 (Mountaineers Books). Maria lives in Olympia, Washington, with her husband and two sons. You can learn more about her fascinations at

Surfrider is hosting its second Washington Coast Leadership Academy

Surfrider is hosting its second Washington Coast Leadership Academy, dedicated to building an effective leadership network for Washington’s coastal areas. People that complete the course will be able to: work with all people, no matter whose “team” they are on; build communities on the basis of shared values; put themselves in places where conversations are happening; etc. This type of work – building communities by cultivating relationships established through shared values – is essential along the path towards sustainable conservation success. The company that put the program together is Context Partners, based out of Portland.

Please consider nominating someone from your network who may be interested in this type of work; emerging leaders from varied backgrounds are in particular demand. The program itself requires a monthly commitment (July – December; some virtual, some in-person); the training is free.

Additional questions should be directed to Casey Dennehy, Washington Coast Program Manager,

Surfrider Leadership Application Form 2017

Surfrider Washington Region

New on the Webpage – Local “Birdy” Places

Check out Local “Birdy” Places under the Birding tab. This includes Bonnie Wood’s guide to local area birding places, information on Grass Lake Refuge by Jim Lynch, and a guide to the Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge by Phil Kelly.

BHAS Board of Directors Election and Amendments to Bylaws

The BHAS Nominating Committee (Bruce Jacobs, Elizabeth Rodrick, and Bob Wadsworth) announces the following nominees for the Board of Directors who will serve from June 1, 2017 through May 31, 2018.

President: Vacant; Vice-President: Elizabeth Rodrick; Treasurer: Kim Adelson; Secretary: Bruce Jacobs; Board members: Deb Nickerson, Ken Brown.

Other Board nominees to date are: Steve Curry, Hank Henry, Craig Merkel, Sam Merrill, Paul Moody, Sharon Moore, Mary Russell, Bob Wadsworth, and Joe Zabransky. Any further nominations should be submitted by April 21 to Elizabeth Rodrick, Please include a short paragraph on why you are interested in serving on the Board.

Chapter members will elect four officers and up to twelve at-large Board members at the May 11, 2017 program meeting at 7:00 p.m. at the Temple Beth Hatfiloh, 201 8th Avenue S.E., Olympia. Members must be present to vote. Four minor amendments to the BHAS Bylaws will also be presented for approval at the May 12 membership meeting. Please consult the BHAS website to review the proposed changes the week before the meeting,



National Wildlife Federation and Veteran Conservation Corps are offering a specialized 24-hour training to teach you how help others to create and restore wildlife habitat in backyards, schoolyards, and other private and public areas. This program is engaging, fun and highly informative and you get to meet and interact with local conservation professionals and other similarly interested folks! Expert speakers will present on topics such as: rain gardens, gardening for wildlife, native plants, invasive species removal, habitat restoration, pollinators, Pacific Northwest ecology, and much more! Benefits include: an NWF volunteer t-shirt, 24 hours of hands-on training, engaging field trips, a comprehensive training manual with local resources, instruction from local professionals, and continued support from NWF and VCC staff.

WHEN: Four 3-hour classroom sessions every Tuesday in April from 6:00-9:00pm. Two Saturday field trips (8th, 29th), plan on a full day!
WHERE: Lacey Veterans Services Hub (4232 6th Ave. SE, Ste. 202, Lacey, WA).
COST: $30, includes classroom materials; scholarships are available!
RSVP: Register here by April 3rd. Questions or concerns? Contact Sarah at or (206) 577-7809.

*Prospective Habitat Stewards must commit to providing 30-hours of volunteer service on local conservation projects within a year after the training.

Nominations for the 2017 BHAS Board

Our chapter elects new Board members each year at our May program meeting. The Nomination Committee (Elizabeth Rodrick, Bruce Jacobs, and Bob Wadsworth) is working to present a slate of officers and at-large board members to you before then. Duties of Board members include attending the following meetings: Board meetings at 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month, September through June; the Annual Dinner on the first Saturday in March; Board Retreat, one day in mid August; BHAS Program meetings on the second Thursday of each month, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. from September through May (optional); and serving on at least one committee (see list in each issue of the Echo). If you would like to serve on the Board or wish to nominate someone, please send a brief paragraph explaining your desires to Elizabeth Rodrick,, by March 30.

Volunteers Wanted to Help Monitor Birds

We are looking for a few birders interested in leading other volunteers to record bird species at several Olympia-area city parks. The Olympia Stream Team is undertaking a project to gain a better understanding of the bird species found there and their changes over time. The idea is to start with three or four parks this year and expand in the future. The four parks chosen for a start are Grass Lake off Kaiser Rd. in West Olympia, Taylor Wetlands in Lacey, Black Lake Meadows off R.W. Johnson near the Community College, and LBA Woods near Boulevard and Morse Merriman in southeast Olympia.

Black Hills Audubon would provide leaders who know the birds and who would lead volunteers interested in learning the birds and participating in citizen science. We plan to have three visits to each park—one a month in March, April, and May—to record the winter birds before they leave and the summer migrants as they arrive. Ideally you would be quite familiar with the park you chose so that you could easily lead the way, and could lead all three walks at your chosen park; but if that’s not possible we can arrange for more than one leader at your park. I have volunteered to lead at LBA Woods, but a second leader would be very helpful.

Stream Team has arranged for an E-bird class to be taught by Bill Tweit, a long-time WDFW. biologist who is well known as an expert birder. E-bird is an ideal repository for the collected data. The class will be on March 23, from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m. at the Olympia City Hall, 601 E. 4th Avenue in Olympia.

If you are interested, please contact me by email at (from Mar/April 2017 Echo newsletter, by Bob Wadsworth)

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