SBAS is actively working on many projects related to our three main focus areas: education, conservation, and science. This column will be updated regularly with an overview of selected current projects and goals (project list is not all-inclusive). Likewise, the goals summarize what each SBAS committee is working towards with occasional opportunities for member involvement.
From the desk of Katherine Emery, Executive Director
- Providing new adapted socially distant education & outreach programs to serve community during Covid
- Creating new Learning & Additional Resources webpages with education materials: videos, birdcalls & field guides.
- Bringing Eyes in the Sky (EITS) raptor ambassadors to local schools via Zoom for 30-45 min presentations. (Contact Hannah for pricing.)
- Providing adapted monthly Evening Programs.
- Reintroducing redesigned in-person raptor outreach at Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.
- Circulate SBAS Learning Resources and EITS video. https://santabarbaraaudubon.org/learning-resources/
- Provide new interactive online Meet Your Wild Neighbor (MYWN) curriculum to 12 local 1st-3rd grade classrooms in the 2020-21 school year.
- Adapt and deliver new SBAS Zoom outreach program to retirement communities and other audiences.
- Continue work with UCSB Goleta Coast Audubon.
- Meeting with agency decision-makers, providing public comments, and signing local conservation letters to promote bird, habitat, and biodiversity protections.
- Using science to inform decision making for bird protections and habitat for Goleta creeks and watersheds and City of Santa Barbara Community Wildfire Protection Plan.
- Reminding agencies that fuels reduction (trimming & removal of vegetation/trees/habitat) should occur during non-breeding times, specifically during months ending with “r”: September, October, November, December. (Sent 80 Tree Trimming letters Oct. 2020).
- Build advocacy to protect local open spaces, wetlands, bird habitats, and ecosystems.
- Collaborate with Goleta Parks & Open Space Manager, SB County Flood Control staff, and others to preserve birdlife and habitat at regional open spaces (e.g., Lake Los Carneros (LLC) & Ellwood), creek corridors, and Coal Oil Point Reserve (COPR).
- Continue promoting the use of Santa Barbara County Breeding Bird Study records as a tool to inform land management and resource planning.
- Work with City of Goleta to consider the use of raptor perch at LLC to control pests and prevent use of rodenticides.
- Exploring community science outreach about Nest Box monitoring at LLC: study of Tree Swallows (TRES) and Western Bluebirds (WEBL) breeding.
- Processing aquatic invertebrate data for COPR and North Campus Open Space to provide quantitative data in support of understanding and evaluating ecosystem health.
- Processing White-tailed Kite breeding data from February through September; 11 nesting events produced a minimum of 14 young.
- Plan 2021 Nest Box monitoring & related outreach.
- Promote 2021 Winter Bird Count For Kids community science event at LLC. (Moved to April.)
- Explore research and conservation fund to protect Purple Martins.
- Welcome more volunteer Kite Watchers to assist tracking kites and other raptors in open spaces in 2021. (Contact Mark Holmgren.)