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Newsletter of the Apalachee Audubon Society, Inc.

Vol. 109, No. 1 September-October 2010

September Program Speaker: David Copps

Beyond the Birdfeeder: Habitat Landscaping for Songbirds
Thursday, September 23rd
Inside this Issue David will present a method for creating natural landscapes that are attractive to
New AAS Logo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 wildlife and appealing to people by blending meadow, hedgerow and woodland
President’s Message . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 patches.
FOS Meeting in TLH . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 He has a masters degree in landscape architecture and more than 25 years of
Calling All Volunteers! . . . . . . . . . 4 experience in landscape design and conservation in the Big Bend region. David has
An Amazing Journey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 collaborated on projects ranging in size from thousands of acres to small, backyard
FOS Student Presentations . . . . . . . . 6 gardens.  His special interest is the design and management of natural habitat
Butterfly Festival/Garden . . . . . . . . . . 7 gardens that bring people close to nature and protect Florida’s water, wildflowers
and wildlife.
Newsletter Changes
Beginning with this issue, the print October Program Speaker: Terry Peacock
edition of the newsletter will be Update on Operation Migration, Class of 2010
published bi-monthly. For timely
Thursday, October 28th
notifications about events, subscribe
to the AAS email notification list at: Find out what’s happening with the new class of Whooping Cranes that will be migrating to St. Marks NWR this winter and how the classes of 2008 and 2009 are
apalachee-audubon faring.

Upcoming AAS Field Trips Field Trip contact information
or Phone: (850) 545-3982
Date: September 26, 2010 (Sunday)
Time: 9:00 a.m., EDT Date: October 10, 2010 (Sunday)
Location: Bald Point State Park with Alternate Side Trip to Time: 10:30 a.m. EDT
Alligator Point Location: St. Joseph Peninsula State Park
Theme: Fall Passerine Migration (All skill levels welcome) Theme: Hawk Migration (All skill levels welcome)
Leader: C.K. Borg (Conservation Biologist with Tall Timbers Leader: C.K. Borg (Conservation Biologist with Tall Timbers
Research Station) Research Station)
Meet at: The first parking lot upon entering the park Meet at: Eagle Harbor Parking Lot
Bring: Binoculars, field guide, water, snacks, insect repellent, Bring: Binoculars, field guide, water, snacks, insect repellent,
sunscreen, clothing appropriate for the weather, and expect sunscreen, clothing appropriate for the weather, and expect
light to moderate walking light walking
Car Pool Location at: Wacovia Bank (3400 S. Monroe St., Car Pool Location at: Wacovia Bank (3400 S. Monroe St.,
Tallahassee; opposite the Fairgrounds) Tallahassee; opposite the Fairgrounds)
Car Pool Meeting Time: 8:00 a.m. EDT (approximate drive Car Pool Meeting Time: 8:00 a.m. EDT (approximate drive
time to the Park is 50 minutes) time to the Park is 2 hours 18 minutes)
Directions: Visit the park’s web site at, Directions: Visit the park’s web site at,
Join National Audubon Society
and Apalachee Audubon!
New Logo for Apalachee Audubon
For just $20 a year you can be a member of both National
Audubon and our local Apalachee Audubon chapter. Your
membership will include Audubon, our bimonthly flagship
publication. Each issue of this award-winning publication
features beautiful photography and provocative journalism.
Our chapter newsletter will keep you informed of local and
statewide Audubon and other nature-related events.
You can pay for membership using a credit card by calling
Audubon’s toll free membership number. (Please mention
our chapter ID, E19, for AAS to get full credit for a new
If you prefer to pay by check for an annual membership, send
your $20 check made payable to National Audubon Society
and mail to:
National Audubon Society
PO Box 422246
Palm Coast, FL 32142-2246 We are pleased to present our new chapter logo, which
Allow 4-6 weeks for arrival of your first issue of Audubon. The incorporates the artwork of local artist Charlotte Forehand.
cost of membership is tax deductible except for $7.50 (which Charlotte teaches art at the Brush & Palette studio in
is allocated to Audubon magazine). Tallahassee and has graciously donated this beautiful limpkin
drawing, which the chapter will be using for the newsletter,
stationary, other publications and soon, t-shirts!
Apalachee Audubon Society (AAS)
2009 – 2010 Officers and Board Members We’ll have information about how you can order a t-shirt
President: Julie Wraithmell (850) 425-1170 in our next newsletter. And if Charlotte’s last name strikes a
Vice President: Jan Bordelon (850) 942-8078 familiar chord, yes, board member Melissa Forehand is proud
Secretary: Ann Bruce (850) 224-4760 to call her ‘Mom’.
Treasurer: Harvey Goldman (850) 385-5222

Directors: AAS Program Meeting Location

Ed Gartner (850) 386-6543 (Past President)
Chris Borg (850) 893-4153
Historic Amtrak Station
Ben Fusaro (850) 297-2052 918 Railroad Avenue
Melissa Forehand (850) 510-4877 Tallahassee, Florida
Dr. Sean McGlynn (850) 222-4895
Sunny Phillips (850) 445-6555
Leann Watts Williams (850) 284-2103

Newsletter Editor: Kathleen Carr (850) 322-7910

Newsletter is published 6 times yearly Station
(Sept.-May, except December).
AAS Logo Design: Charlotte Forehand
Webmaster: John Boutelle (850) 656-3346
Apalachee Audubon Society, Inc.
P.O. Box 1237
Tallahassee, FL 32303

AAS is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization. All contributions

are tax deductible. Inquiries can also be sent to 1819 Doric
Dr, Tallahassee, FL 32303.
Mission Statement: Protection of the environment through
education, appreciation, and conservation. Electronic version of this newsletter
is available on the AAS web site.
2 Apalachee Audubon Society September-October 2010
President’s Message: How you can make a difference by Julie Wraithmell

This past July, black lumps of tar coated in sand were our power. Helping to post protected areas for coastal birds,
scattered around my feet as I watched the Least Tern chicks chaperoning colonies to protect them from disturbance, and
at Perdido Key testing their wings. Parents bringing a steady helping rooftop nesting individuals of these species who call
stream of fish back to their chicks called from the steel gray Tallahassee home will all help to offset these losses.
sky, and I found myself watching the tentative youngsters
with a bittersweet uncertainty of what their future held. This Help us build our community of conservation. Audubon’s
uncertainty seemed to hang like a cloud over our community greatest strength is neither our science nor our policy
this summer, as we all watched in horror as the impending acumen—both of which are substantial—but in fact
doom of the Deepwater Horizon Incident crept closer to our our human capital, the grassroots volunteers that give of
coast, with many of us making somber visits to our favorite themselves to act and speak on behalf of Florida’s wildlife.
coastal spots, paying our final respects to the places that have I ask each of you who were willing to clean oiled wildlife,
made our hearts sing. to consider contributing your time to help us build our
conservation community in the Tallahassee area. Attend our
I was humbled by the tidal wave of people eager to volunteer, chapter meetings. Bring your friends and neighbors. Join a
and overwhelmed by the sheer lack of volunteer activities field trip. Volunteer your talents, whether it’s helping with our
permitted by authorities in the preparation and response. butterfly garden at St. Marks, learning to identify shorebirds
Apalachee Audubon members were not to be turned away to assist with coastal surveys, sharing the joys of nature with
however. Many registered to volunteer in whatever capacity children, or baking goodies to share at the monthly program.
they could be useful. Some helped post imperiled beach-
nesting bird sites in nearby state parks, others helped If one good thing has come from this disaster, it has
rehabbers prepare for an influx of birds, and others still took motivated Floridians to dedicate their time and energy to
their concerns to the Florida Legislature during its Special conservation. Just because the well is capped does not mean
Session in July. the threat is past. Help us make Apalachee Audubon YOUR
chapter more than just in name. We have included a list
The well is now capped, and we are all breathing an uneasy of volunteer needs on page 4 and encourage you that no
sigh of hopeful relief, beginning to take stock of the change contribution of time or creativity is too small. I look forward
on our coasts. to hear from each of you your ideas for how we can help our
community and coast recover in the coming year.
These long-term effects will be difficult to detect, measure and
combat, so one of the most meaningful things we can do is You can email me at
to address the challenges coastal species face that ARE within

Florida Ornithological Society Meets in Tallahassee by Jim Cox

Apalachee Audubon members have a great chance to learn Friday
much more about those wonderful creatures that visit feeders Initial Flocking, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. at St. Stephen Lutheran
and sing from the trees. The Florida Ornithological Society Church (pictures and brief presentations)
(FOS) meets in Tallahassee from October 8-10, 2010. The
meeting features field trips led by some of Florida’s most
Field trips, 7:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
experienced birders, special presentations on bird studies
Research presentations at Tall Timbers, 2:00-5:00 p.m.
underway throughout the state, and social events where you’re
Social and banquet, 6:00 - 9:00 p.m. at Tall Timbers (featured
not considered nerdy if you know the call of a Mississippi
speaker is Felicia Coleman, director of FSU Marine Lab)
FOS includes a diverse group of amateur and professional Field trips, 7:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
bird watchers that share a common goal of advancing the
Volunteers also are needed for some events and will receive
study of wild birds in Florida. FOS supports research,
free passes to several events. For information on how you can
education, and conservation and helps birders enjoy all those
help, contact Jim Cox (893-4153 ext. 223 or
pretty colors with a scientific eye. Come learn more about
the birdlife of the Big Bend and also meet others that share
See page 6 for a list of student presentations that will take
your passion for birds. Complete details about the meeting
place at Tall Timbers on Saturday, October 9.
can be found on the FOS web site, but the
thumbnail sketch follows:
September-October 2010 Apalachee Audubon Society 3
Calling All Volunteers!
It takes a village to build a strong Audubon chapter, and you don’t have to be on the board or an officer to make a
difference! We are looking for help with the following opportunities, and will continue to update this feature in each
newsletter, to let you know how you can be most helpful to Apalachee Audubon and conservation in our region.
Contact VP Jan Bordelon at (850) 942-8078 or to learn more or sign up. Find out more
about us by visiting our website.

Outreach volunteer: Staff the Apalachee Audubon display table at a regional festival (dates/locations below). Share
your enthusiasm for birds and the environment with adults, or help with kids activities at our booth. Volunteers
work in pairs, and no experience is needed—we are happy to pair you with a board member or another seasoned
volunteer. Only job requirement is: an enjoyment of talking about nature! We need volunteers to help with tabling at
the following events:

• Big Bend Environmental Forum Candidates’ Forum: October 7, 6:00-9:00 p.m. Tallahassee
• St. Marks NWR Monarch Festival: October 23, 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., St. Marks (We need volunteers willing
to work two-hour-long shifts.)
• St. Marks Wildlife & Outdoors Heritage Festival: February TBA, St. Marks NWR
• Wakulla Wildlife Festival: April 2, 2011, Edward Ball Wakulla Springs State Park
• Birdsong Nature Center Festival: April 2011 (date TBA), Thomasville, GA
• Senior Days: Put on by the Leon County Senior Outreach program
- Bradfordville, October 13, 10:30 a.m.-12-30 p.m.
- Woodville, October 14, 10:30 a.m.-12-30 p.m.
- Ft. Braden, October 19, 10:30 a.m.-12-30 p.m.
- Chaires-Capitola, October 26, 10:30 a.m.-12-30 p.m.
- Miccosukee, November 26, 10:30 a.m.-12-30 p.m.

Butterfly Garden Tending: Join other Audubon volunteers in tending Apalachee Audubon’s butterfly garden at
St. Marks NWR. Dates/times flexible. Knowledgeable gardeners and those willing to learn all welcome! Butterfly
Garden Chairperson is Ann Bruce. Contact Ann at home (850) 224-4760 or cell (850) 766-3061 OR at
Nature Writer: Work to develop a brochure for our St. Marks Butterfly Garden. Writing and layout/design skills
The Bringer of Treats: Everyone loves the person who brings the goodies to the monthly program meetings. Sign
up to be the most popular person in the room for as many meetings as you are willing! Our program meetings
are held on the 4th Thursday of the month in Tallahassee at the historic Amtrak Station, 918 Railroad Square.
Upcoming dates include: September 23, October 28, November 18.
Child at Heart: Conceive of and prepare self-contained children’s activities about birds for use at outreach events.
Are you a teacher? Are you crafty? Or just a big kid? We need you!
Field Trip Leaders: Interested in leading a field trip—for adults, kids or both? We can never have too many

If you are interested in helping AAS with anything listed above, please let us know.
Contact VP Jan Bordelon at (850) 942-8078 or to learn more or sign up.
Jan will be glad to chat with you about details of anything we’ve listed here.

4 Apalachee Audubon Society September-October 2010

Florida to Alaska—A Hummingbird’s Amazing Journey by Fred Dietrich

On June 28, 2010, I received some This bird had

astonishing news. A female rufous come into
hummingbird I banded on January Pam’s yard
13, 2010 at Pam Flynn’s home in about a week
Tallahassee had been recaptured that earlier and was
day by Kate McLaughlin in Chenega being chased
Bay, Alaska, in Prince William Sound. around by a
That was an incredible 3,523 miles, male rufous
straight-line distance, from where she I had banded
was banded. Prince William Sound is there on
in the most northwestern range of the October 24,
rufous breeding territory, and where she 2009. My
most certainly was born and had come first attempt to
back to breed. band her was
unsuccessful as Profile shot while being held by Fred Dietrich. Note bird’s size
This recapture is by far the longest the male would compared to Fred’s thumb.
distance ever recorded for any species not allow her
of hummingbird between the banding near the trap, of western hummingbirds have been
and recapture site. The previous forcing her to find other feeders in the documented by hummingbird banders
record was a bird that was recovered on neighborhood. I came back a couple in the East and Southeastern United
Vancouver Island, British Columbia of days later with a new plan. I left one States.
after being banded by Dave Patton feeder up, far enough from me that the
in Lafayette, LA, about 2,200 miles. As part of the documentation of each
male would come feed at it, but close
While it has long been believed that winter bird, a series of photos are taken
enough so I could run her off if she
the rufous hummingbirds that winter of the bill, back, gorget, wing and tail.
tried to feed there instead of going to
in the SE states may have come from as The photos of this bird are located at:
the trap. Shortly after one of the male’s
far away as Alaska, this is the first time The
visits to the feeder, the female snuck
that we have been able to document last page is a record of the measurements
around the house, went into the trap
it at both ends of the migration route. that were collected and reported to the
and I quickly closed the door. She hung
The exciting thing is that this bird Bird Banding Laboratory in Maryland,
around for another week before either
is still alive and healthy and we have the repository of all data that is collected
having enough of battling the male or
the opportunity to see if it returns to through bird banding.
setting off on her long trip home.
Tallahassee next winter. Her epic journey defies all logic. This
When I examined her culmen under
3.7 gram bird, about 1/8 of an ounce,
high magnification, I
was only 6 months old when she
found approximately
took off from Alaska, heading for her
50% contained
wintering grounds. She was completely
grooving, indicating
on her own, no experience to rely on,
this was a young
no flock of hummingbirds to fly with
bird, born last
and no mom to follow on this long
summer, most
round trip journey of more than 7,000
likely in June 2009.
miles. At the time she was recaptured
Instead of migrating
she was just completing her first year of
south to Mexico,
life and appeared no worse for the wear,
like most rufous,
other than being covered with pollen
she came east and
from flowers she had been feeding
spent the winter
on, getting ready to begin her next
here. Over the past
migration cycle.
Hummer host and AAS member Pam Flynn with bird in her 20 years of so, an
increasing number continued on page 6
left hand, and holding the fishing line to the trap.

September-October 2010 Apalachee Audubon Society 5

continued from page 5
Some people still refer to the hummingbirds that migrate the same ratio as the wrist watch that is worn by human
east rather than south as “vagrants,” “lost,” “wayward” or marathon runners. Since the bird tucks its legs up into its
“doomed.” From our research these terms hardly seem to body feathers when it flies, there is no increased aerodynamic
apply. In Fred Bassett’s winter 2009-10 summary of his drag caused by the band.
banding efforts in the Southeast, South Alabama and North
Florida, 79 rufous were captured. Of these 16 were already Now we will patiently wait to see if our little rock star finds
banded, returning for at least their 2nd winter. Included her way back to Tallahassee. Many fingers all across the
among the returnees were two back for their 5th year, two country are crossed with hopes that she will. You just never
for their 7th year and two for their 8th year. There was also know what you’re going to learn when you put a band on a
a black-chinned back for its 8th winter. I had one of the 5th bird’s leg.
year rufous in my own yard and one of the 7th year rufous was If you are interested in helping with this important research,
also in Tallahassee. These birds show tremendous site fidelity, leave your hummingbird feeders up during the winter and
returning to the same perches in the same yards year after contact me if one shows up at your home.
year. Obviously there is nothing wrong with these birds and
they are not just wandering around, they just have a different
plan. (850) 591-7430

Without banding hummingbirds, we could not document See photos of this bird and the banding session at:
their migration habits or distinguish this bird from the other
thousands that breed in Prince William Sound. Obviously
there was no harm done to this bird during banding and Fred Dietrich lives in Tallahassee and is one of a few dozen
carrying the band didn’t affect its ability to fly. The weight banders in the country trying to learn more about the movements
of the band is less than 0.2% of its body weight, roughly and ecology of western hummingbird species that are migrating
and wintering in the East and Southeast in growing numbers.

FOS October Meeting—Student Presentations

A group of nine students will by vying for cash prizes and other awards at the upcoming fall meeting of the Florida
Ornithological Society in Tallahassee (October 8-10). Titles for the presentations are provided below and highlight some great
projects spearheaded by up-and-coming graduate and undergraduate students at five universities. The session takes place at
Tall Timbers Research Station on Saturday, October 9.

Presentations are arranged by the student’s last name, not by the order of presentations:
• The genetic consequences of habitat fragmentation on Brown-headed Nuthatch. Kin-Lan Han, University of Florida,
Gainesville, FL
• Winter homing behavior in forest birds and the effects of forest cover. Chelsea Heatherington, University of Florida,
Gainesville, Fl.
• Landscape permeability of southern pine forests by Bachman’s Sparrows at Ft. Benning, GA. Clark Jones, University
of Georgia, Athens, GA.
• Differences in breeding ecology of Seaside Sparrows in Gulf and Atlantic coastal marsh habitats. Anna Joy
Lehmicke, University of Georgia, Athens, GA
• The effects of breeding status on singing frequency in Bachman’s Sparrow. Aubrey Sirman, Florida State University,
Tallahassee, FL.
• American Oystercatcher nesting on the gulf coast of peninsular Florida. Matthew Smith, Audubon of Florida Florida
Coastal Islands Sanctuaries, Tampa, FL.
• Effects of sociality in the Bahama Parrot. Caroline Stahala, Florida State University, Tallahassee, FL.
• Eastern Painted Bunting habitat use in Florida. Derrick Thrasher, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL.
• Quality vs. quantity: how urbanization affects body and plumage condition in nestling and juvenile Florida Scrub-
Jays. Angela Tringali, University of Central Florida, Orlando, FL.

6 Apalachee Audubon Society September-October 2010

October 23—Butterfly Garden Birthday Party by Ann Bruce

See Lou Kellenberger’s online slideshow of the butterfly garden at:

You are invited to help us At 2:00 p.m., during the

celebrate the First Birthday festival at the Pollinator
of Apalachee Audubon’s St. Garden, there will be a brief
Marks Wildlife Refuge Awards Ceremony to honor
Pollinator Garden. The Apalachee Audubon’s Lynn
celebration will be during Reynolds, Lincoln High
the 22nd Annual Monarch Horticulture Instructor
Butterfly Festival and James West and Wakulla
the Families in Nature High Advanced Placement
“Monarch” event on Environmental Science
Saturday, October 23 class instructor Angela
starting at 10:00 a.m. The Williams for their leadership
2600 square foot garden in initiating the garden.
is located at the St. Marks Apalachee Audubon is
NWR Picnic Pond area. presenting our Presidential
Native plants outlining Award to these individuals
the roadside leading to recognizing their exceptional
the garden were added last contributions. Please join us
spring and initial plantings in the main garden have begun in saying a very special thank you to Lynn, Jim, and Angela!
to take hold and thrive. The garden is looking good! During
Volunteer Wakulla: Make A Difference Day held Sept. Many volunteer opportunities are available to assist us with
11, 2010, community volunteers began outlining our plant continuing this important education and conservation
areas with 275 linear feet of limerock. The cost of limerock project. Help is always needed with weeding and initial
was shared between the St. Marks Refuge Association and watering until new plants become established. We’re looking
Apalachee Audubon’s garden grant from the National Fish for fellow-enthusiasts to help grow native plants from seed
and Wildlife Foundation. The limerock will be a major in the garden. We need help with seeds/plants that are both
help in future garden maintenance. We express our gratitude common and hard-to-find. If you can lend your expertise
to our partners the St. Marks Refuge Association for their in this area, please let us know. Since we still plan to seek
contribution to this improvement. certification as an official Monarch Waystation from the
University of Kansas,
increasing variety and
number of hardy,
native nectar and
larval butterfly plants
is an important goal.
If you would like to be
a volunteer with the
garden, contact Ann
Bruce or Ed Gartner.

Please bring family

and friends to the Monarch Festival. Community exhibitors,
tours on monarchs, other butterflies, butterfly-attractant
plants, butterfly tagging, demonstrations, and special
Families in Nature “Monarch” children’s activities will all be
part of the fun.

Photos by Lou Kellenberger

September-October 2010 Apalachee Audubon Society 7

Apalachee Audubon Non-Profit
P.O. Box 1237 Organization
Tallahassee, FL 32302-1237 US Postage Paid
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Your membership expiration date is shown at top right above your name. For problems with membership, call the National
Audubon Society Office at 1-800-274-4201. For problems with mailings, contact Pam Flynn at

Apalachee Audubon Society Calendar: September-October 2010

Social begins at 7:00, meeting at 7:30 p.m. Located at the historic Amtrak Station, 918 Railroad Avenue—map on page 2. For
more information, call (850)510-4877 or visit:

Chapter/Audubon Events Related Events

September September
23 AAS Program Meeting: David Copps will give a 25 25th Annual Coastal Cleanup: Bottoms Road Beach
presentation about creating natural landscapes that Clean-up. Bring gloves, closed toe shoes, & bug
will attract birds and other wildlife. spray. Contact Melissa Forehand, (850)510-4877 or
26 Sunday Field Trip: Fall migration watch at Bald
Point SP. Details on page 1. 25 What’s Your Wild: St. Marks NWR
October October
10 Sunday Field Trip: Hawk watching at St. Joseph 8-10 FOS Annual Meeting: Florida Ornithological
Peninsula SP. Details on page 1. Annual Meeting in Tallahassee. Details on page 4.
28 AAS Program Meeting: Operation Migration, 8-9 Monarch Madness! Fourth Annual Butterfly
Class of 2010. Terry Peacock from St. Marks Festival at the Panhandle Butterfly House, 10:00 a.m.
NWR will give an update on this year’s class & the to 5:00 p.m. Located at 8581 Navarre Parkway on
upcoming fall/winter migration. Highway 98 in Navarre, FL.
22-23 2010 Audubon Assembly: This year’s state assembly 13  nd Wednesday Reading/Discussion Group: Meet
on October 22 and 23 at the Hilton St. Petersburg at 7:00 p.m. at the Atlanta Bread Company on
Carillon Park in St. Petersburg is a great way to take Governor’s Square Blvd. Details on page 1.
care of the places that make Florida special. Details 23 22nd Annual Monarch Butterfly Festival: Takes
and registration info at place at the St. Marks National Wildlife Refuge.
Begins at 10:00 a.m. and lasts until dusk.