Saturday, January 6th was the 6th Annual Kids’ Christmas Bird Count. Each KCBC has been wonderful, but for some reason, this one seemed to me to be the best ever. A joint effort between SAS and the Effie Yeaw Nature Center, the 22 children aged 5 to 11 divided into 4 teams with experienced birders leading each team, and set off at the Nature Center in Carmichael to walk the trails and to find nearly 50 species of birds.
Returning after 2 hours in the field, families ate lunch, shared stories of the morning walks, and maybe best of all, children were able to choose from a rich variety of nature-related raffle gifts to take home with them. Many also explored the Nature Center and were treated to demonstrations by Effie Yeaw staff of live residents such as a Great Horned Owl and a Swainson’s Hawk.
A first-time volunteer summed it up very well. She was touched by the joy and enthusiasm she saw in each child as they arrived and throughout the morning and thought, “This is where it all starts – the planting of a single seed to spark an interest in nature.” Sacramento Audubon and Effie Yeaw Nature Center seem to do this very well indeed! Maureen Geiger, Compiler of the KCBC
First Annual Teen CBC 2018
On a cool, foggy morning, fifteen teens and parents joined six leaders to survey four areas in the Wm. Pond Park area. We emphasized spotting and auditory skills, finding birds quickly with binoculars, noting prominent features on birds, and using habitat as clues to types of birds who potentially could be there. We had a notably focused, engaged and motivated group of birders who, after birding 2.5 hrs., gathered for lunch at a Mexican Restaurant to socialize, share highlights of the count, and compile totals. We recorded 59 species. Highlights shared were: a perched Peregrine Falcon, American Kestrel, three Spotted Sandpipers together, several Blue-Gray Gnatcatchers, two Hooded Mergansers, and large flocks of both Lark Sparrows and American Pipits. So many of our registered teens wanted to attend but were stricken with the epidemic flu and we wish them a speedy recovery.