Calendar of Programs and Events

Sunday Morning Bird Walks
Sunday, September 1 – October 31st 
7:30 AM – 9:00 AM – Meet at the APNC Parking Lot
Busey Woods and Crystal Lake Park

**This year we are obviously encouraging people to do things a little differently with COVID-19, however, fortunately, there are no state-imposed limits right now on outdoor activities – limit in person contact and avoid carpooling with others. Meet up at the birding site and practice social distancing and wear face masks. We also unfortunately have to discourage any post count potlucks or gatherings, particularly indoors. Please be smart and be safe to protect our volunteers. **


Monthly Meeting and Seminar Schedule

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Eavesdropping on Warblers to Defend Against Brood Parasitism

With Shelby Lawson, PhD candidate at University of Illinois:Urbana-Champaign


Thursday, February 4th, 2021 at 7:00 PM CST

As part of our *virtual* monthly meeting and seminar, we will be presenting via ZOOM.
Webinars will be recorded and posted to our YouTube channel after the event. 
We are excited to “see” you again! 
Access details: ZOOM Meeting ID is 868 6985 0355 and the Password is 0204
This month, we are happy to welcome Shelby Lawson, PhD candidate at University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign to discuss her research:
Eavesdropping on Warblers to Defend Against Brood Parasitism
Shelby will tell us how Red-winged Blackbirds respond to the warning or “seet” call of Yellow Warblers as a frontline defense on their territories. Yellow Warblers produce a seet call specifically to warn other Yellow Warblers of the obligate brood parasitic Brown-headed Cowbird, which lay their eggs in the warblers’ and other species’ nests. Other species do not have a specific alarm call for cowbirds, but they may eavesdrop on the seet calls of Yellow Warblers. Using playback presentations, Shelby and colleagues found that Red-winged Blackbirds eavesdrop on the seet calls of warblers, and respond as much to seet calls as to cowbird chatters and predator calls.
Background: Shelby Lawson is Ph.D. candidate in Dr. Mark Hauber’s lab at UIUC. Shelby is interested in vocal communication and perception of acoustic signals, as well as the role that social experience plays in this. Shelby’s graduate work focuses on Yellow Warblers, which produce function reference calls (seet calls) that denote Brown-headed Cowbirds, a brood parasite. Shelby studies the behavioral, neurological, hormonal, and perceptual responses of Yellow Warblers and Red-winged Blackbirds to playbacks. Shelby has authored and co-authored a set of scientific articles. Her work has been published in prestigious scientific journals,e.g., the research that she is presenting today was published last year in the well-known academic journal Communications Biology. 
Learn more :
Stay up to date with Shelby
on Twitter: @BirdSock
The Great Backyard Bird Count
A National Community Science Effort
February 12th – 15th, 2021

The Great Backyard Bird Count was the first ever fully online community science project started in 1998. Be one of the over 250,000 people that participate each year! For four days in February, the whole world gets together to conduct a bird census, a snapshot in time of what birds are active and where. These observations help us better understand the status and health of bird populations. Plus its fun! Join us by counting from home for any amount of time throughout the count period. More instructions can be found on the Great Backyard Bird Count Website and details on how to conduct the count through eBird or Merlin can be found here.

Recurring Events

Sunday Morning Birdwalks
March-May & Sept-Oct
Sundays, 7:30 – 9 a.m.
Our most popular event! Meet at the Anita Purves Nature Center parking lot, 1505 N. Broadway, Urbana, at 7:30 a.m. Walks in the nearby Busey Woods and Crystal Lake Park officially last about 1 1/2 hours (though some intrepid birders stay later).

Feb-May & Sept-Dec
First Thursday of the month, 7 p.m.
Guest speakers present on a variety of topics throughout the year. Programs are usually located at the Urbana Free Library auditorium (no programs January, June, July, August)

Bird Counts
See Bird Count page.

Board Meetings
Third Monday of the month, 7:00pm
Champaign Public Library – Friends Conference Room
(No meetings June, July, December) 

For more learning opportunities, please see programs and events offered at two local park districts:
Urbana Park District
Champaign County Forest Preserve District

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