Klamath Bird Observatory Executive Director John Alexander, and City of Ashland representative Susan Rust, were interviewed for a local television news spot on the final day of Ashland’s first Mountain Bird Festival, a conservation event hosted by Klamath Bird Observatory. The Mountain Bird Festival raises the profile of the natural beauty, diverse wildlife, and cultural amenities of Ashland, southern Oregon, and northern California. The festival also leads to boons for local businesses, as approximately 70% of the over 100 festival attendees are visiting from outside the Rogue Valley and spending money on food, lodging, fuel, entertainment, and gifts while pursuing glimpses of Calliope Hummingbirds, Green-tailed Towhees, and other feathered specialties of the region.
The cover article of Wednesday May 27th’s edition of the Ashland Daily Tidings featured the 2015 Mountain Bird Festival.
The article by John Darling highlights the economic benefits of birding. Bird enthusiasts generate billions of dollars of economic activity each year — The 2014 Mountain Bird Festival generated an estimated $70,000 of economic activity, benefiting local businesses in our region.
The article covers additional details about the Festival and Klamath Bird Observatory and also includes beautiful photographs by Jim Livaudais. Click here to read the article.
We are grateful for the generous support we have received for our Mountain Bird Festival over the last three years. The Mountain Bird Festival is a valuable conservation education event that has measurable benefits for KBO, our local community, the birding community, and bird and habitat conservation. Your support and participation has been instrumental in the success of this unique conservation event.
We want our Festival participants and partners to be the first to know that Klamath Bird Observatory will be postponing the 2017 Mountain Bird Festival. After careful reflection on our 1st three years of putting on the Festival, we believe a hiatus will be help us to take steps that will markedly improve the Festival and ensure that its benefits continue to increase for all involved.
During this furlough KBO will continue to advance the mission of the Festival, Citizens and Science Advancing Bird Conservation through our Community Education Program. With the spirit of this mission in mind we will be planning a Mountain Bird Night for 2017, with a keynote speaker, possible field trips, and the unveiling of our 2017 Conservation Stamp Set, including the 2017 Klamath Bird Observatory Conservation Science Stamp and the 2017-18 Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation [Duck] Stamp. This event will be open to the public with the purchase of the Conservation Stamp Set, the proceeds of which will go directly to advancing conservation locally and nationally. Stay tuned for more details.
Klamath Bird Observatory’s Community Education Program will also continue to remain active. We will be participating in other community celebrations, such as Rogue Valley Bird Day. Additionally, our Talks and Walks program continues to offer a variety of conservation education activities. As in past years, we will also be providing other special events and trips.
We appreciate your faithful support and understanding as we take this time to enhance our yearly event. We are certain our next Festival will be well worth the wait.
*** NEWS RELEASE — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE ***
June 1, 2015
Contact: Marcella Rose Sciotto, admin@KlamathBird.org, 541-201-0866Klamath Bird Observatory is proud to announce that Sandy Jilton is the first recipient of our new Bullock’s Rose Oriole Volunteer Award.
This award has been established to recognize individuals who demonstrate outstanding service as volunteers helping Klamath Bird Observatory fulfill its mission to advance bird and habitat conservation through science, education, and partnerships. Sandy Jilton is being recognized as the recipient of the Bullock’s Rose Oriole for her efforts to help make the Klamath Bird Observatory’s 2nd annual Mountain Bird Festival a success.
The Mountain Bird Festival is a community education event designed to foster the stewardship ethic needed to ensure thriving landscapes for humans and wildlife. This Festival represents a significant volunteer effort with nearly 50 community members chipping in over 1,200 volunteer hours to help put the event on. These volunteers help Klamath Bird Observatory staff with field trips, registration, vendors, planning, and much more.
Klamath Bird Observatory recognizes Sandy Jilton with the first Bullock’s Rose Oriole Volunteer Award for her volunteer work that was essential to the success of this year’s Festival. Sandy worked tirelessly to coordinate our food and drink vendors. She spent hours to find the right vendors who best represented our region’s food and beverage culture. She then worked with them to ensure their participation benefitted their businesses while also helping us to meet the conservation oriented goals of the Festival. In addition to this core aspect of her volunteer role, Sandy was always eager to help out in any way that she could. Her endless enthusiasm, good cheer, and skillful execution made her a delight to work with.
Over the past two years bird enthusiasts from all over the U.S. have flocked to Ashland, Oregon for Klamath Bird Observatory’s award winning Mountain Bird Festival. The Festival is designed to raise funds for bird conservation while celebrating the role citizens play in conservation as well as the glory of the birds and wildlife of southern Oregon and northern California. The Festival offers more than 35 field trips that explore portions of the Cascade and Siskiyou Mountains, as well as the Klamath Basin, Shasta Valley, the Klamath River, the Rogue watershed, and birding hotspots in and around Ashland and Medford. Each year, more than 120 participants, many of which traveling from out of the area, come to see some of southern Oregon’s unique bird species, and to contribute to bird conservation. In addition to these contributions, participants spend an estimated $70,000 on lodging, meals, entertainment, and more, demonstrating that birding means business and that the Mountain Bird Festival offers significant economic benefits to our region.
By name, Klamath Bird Observatory’s new Bullock’s Rose Oriole Volunteer Award honors Stephanie Bullock, the Festival’s 1st Volunteer Coordinator, and Marcella Rose Sciotto, the Mountain Bird Festival Coordinator, who has made this Festival a successful volunteer-driven event.
Click here to read Talent’s News & Review profile and article on Sandy and her accomplishments.
Klamath Bird Observatory and the 2015 Mountain Bird Festival welcome three featured artists – Dan Elster, Katrina Elise Meister, and Stefan Savides. These artists, all from the Klamath-Siskiyou Bioregion, will be setting up galleries during this year’s Friday (May 29) and Saturday (May 30) Mountain Bird Festival socials from 5:00pm to 7:00pm at ScienceWorks Hands-on Museum in Ashland, Oregon. These generous artists are donating a portion of gallery sales to support Klamath Bird Observatory’s efforts to advance bird and habitat conservation through science, education, and partnerships.
2015 Mountain Bird Festival Art Galleries, open to the public, Friday (May 29) and Saturday (May 30), 5:00pm to 7:00pm, at SceinceWorks Hands on Museum.
DAN ELSTERDan was born in Chicago, 1971. In his old life he was the manager of his brother’s food distribution business on the west side of Chicago. A few years ago Dan and his wife (Patty) took a leap of faith … they quit their jobs, sold their home and hit the road. Patty took a job as a travel nurse, while Dan pursued a dream career in wildlife photography. After a few years of nomadic living, they now call Ashland, Oregon home. While Dan has always loved wildlife, he never had much interest in photography growing up. He is mostly self-taught. His subjects are completely wild (no captive or “staged” shots) and it’s important to him that people know that. Capturing behavior and the inclusion of habitat also helps to define his style. It’s the drama in nature that inspires Dan. In the wild every day is a struggle to survive. This is the story he aims to tell. Dan also hopes his work serves as a reminder that we don’t own the earth, we share it. Click here to learn more about Dan.
KATRINA ELISE MEISTERKatrina has been drawing as long as she can remember. She paints with watercolors, oil paints, acrylics, pen and ink, and block prints. Most of her work ends up on Katrina’s Cards and Gifts, her popular line of note cards and gift items. A sixth generation Oregonian, Katrina received a Bachelor of Fine Arts and a Bachelors of Psychology from the University of Oregon, as well at receiving a degree from the U of O Honors College. Her paintings have exhibited in galleries and corporate offices and many regional art festivals. Katrina’s Cards and Gifts are available in select stores throughout the Northwest. Her work is in several private and corporate collections. She lives with her husband Michael, and their two children in Southern Oregon. Click here to learn more about Katrina.
STEFAN SAVIDESStefan has made birds his passion, and he has followed that passion from day one. His avian taxidermy has earned him an international reputation; however this multi-talented artist has painted, carved, raised and sculpted birds throughout his life. Sculpting in bronze is a natural progression from taxidermy as it provides Savides a lasting medium in which to express his knowledge of avian anatomy and design. A lifetime of study, coupled with the quest for simplistic design, has lead Savides to sculpt in a manner that captures the essence of his subjects without distracting detail. He is truly a multi-talented artist who has proven himself in a variety of mediums. Savides is an elected member of the National Sculpture society and a signature member of the Society of Animal Artists. Click here to learn more about Stefan.
Mountain Bird Festival 2015 Keynote Presentation —
eBird: Innovating citizen-science, big data research, and bird conservation
In our fast-paced world, birds serve as an unrivaled window for studying and assessing environmental change: literal canaries in coal mines. eBird is a network of human observers spread across the planet collecting millions of data points each month, combined with the power of remote sensors that collect real-time environmental data, spun together through innovative computer science and modeling efforts that ultimately achieve real-world conservation outcomes for birds. Today eBird is arguably the fastest-growing biodiversity network in existence. Find out how we’ve taken a novel approach to crowdsourcing, and turned the birding community’s global passion for birds into a vast data resource for science and conservation.
Brian Sullivan has conducted fieldwork on birds throughout North America for the past 20 years. Birding travels, photography, and field projects have taken him to Central and South America, to Antarctica, the Arctic and across North America. He has written and consulted on various books, popular, and scientific literature on North American birds, and is a co-author on The Crossley ID Guide: Raptors, and the forthcoming Princeton Guide to North American Birds. He is currently project leader for eBird (www.ebird.org) and photographic editor for the Birds of North America Online at the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology. He also served as photographic editor for the American Birding Association’s journal North American Birds from 2005-2013.
2015 Mountain Bird Festival: Citizens and Science Elevating Bird Conservation
The 2014 Mountain Bird Festival was a huge success. All attendees served as bird conservationists by helping raise over $10,000 in support of local and national conservation efforts and the science that drives that conservation. Participants flocked from all over the U.S. to bird the Klamath-Siskiyou Bioregion of southern Oregon and northern California. 171 bird species were seen by festival participants, including mountain and pacific northwest specialties such as White-headed Woodpecker, Spotted Owl, Calliope Hummingbird, Mountain Bluebird, and of course, the Great Gray Owl. Additionally, over 90 species of wildflowers were seen in bloom, as well as 21 species of dragonflies and damselflies seen zipping through the region’s diverse habitats. All data from field trips were entered into eBird Northwest, which contributes to our understanding of bird distribution and habitat use. All festival attendees purchased a Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp (a.k.a. the Duck Stamp) with their registration, contributing to wetland restoration and conservation throughout the United States; attendees also purchased a Conservation Science Stamp, supporting Klamath Bird Observatory‘s worldwide efforts to advance bird and habitat conservation through science, education, and partnerships.
The 2015 Mountain Bird Festival will offer guided bird walks, fine art galleries, local wine, microbrew, and food vendors, and a feel-good community atmosphere. This year’s keynote speaker will be Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology’s International eBird project leader, Brian Sullivan. Brian will show us how eBird and its state of the art technologies are revolutionizing birding, making this popular recreation a powerful conservation science activity.
Festival registration includes half-day or full-day field trips offered on both Saturday and Sunday.
Festival goers will have the opportunity to enjoy all that is offered by the town of Ashland, Oregon. See a play at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, stroll through town to visit a variety of shops and galleries, get a massage, or enjoy a meal at one of Ashland’s many restaurants that feature local foods. We look forward to seeing you at the 2015 Mountain Bird Festival.
- Click here for registration, now available on our website.
- Click here for the festival flyer.
- Click here for a list of field trips.
The Klamath Bird Observatory is grateful for your support and dedication. Don’t forget to tell your friends about this great opportunity to see wonderful birds and contribute to their conservation while at it!
*** PRESS RELEASE***
The award winning Mountain Bird Festival is back, celebrating the natural wonders of southern Oregon and northern California. The 2015 Mountain Bird Festival will be held in Ashland, Oregon from May 29th-31st. Registration for the Festival will be available on the Klamath Bird Observatory website at www.klamathbird.org. The Mountain Bird Festival offers guided bird walks, a keynote presentation, fine art galleries, local wine, microbrew, and food vendors, and a feel-good community atmosphere. Registration includes half-day or full-day field trips offered on both Saturday and Sunday.
The 2015 Mountain Bird Festival combines a celebration of the Klamath-Siskiyou Bioregion’s spectacular mountain birds and the stewardship ethic needed to ensure thriving landscapes for humans and wildlife. Every citizen who participates in the Festival helps to advance bird and habitat conservation in multiple ways. They contribute to habitat protection through the purchase of a Federal Migratory Bird Hunting and Conservation Stamp (a.k.a. the Duck Stamp), thereby supporting one of the most successful conservation programs in the United States. Festival attendees also purchase a Conservation Science Stamp with proceeds supporting Klamath Bird Observatory’s regional science and education programs aimed at achieving sustainable natural resource management. Additionally, every Festival goer serves as a citizen scientist contributing field trip bird sightings to eBird Northwest, a rapidly growing database that advances our knowledge about birds and their habitats.
This year’s Mountain Bird Festival features a keynote presentation by Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology’s International eBird project leader, Brian Sullivan. Brian will show us how eBird and its state of the art technologies are revolutionizing birding, making this popular recreation a powerful conservation science activity.
The Klamath-Siskiyou Bioregion of southern Oregon and northern California is one of the most biologically diverse regions in the world, an absolute must-see for birders and naturalists. The 2015 Mountain Bird Festival offers guided bird walks to some of the most beautiful and diverse landscapes of the region. Field trips will target highly sought after mountain birds of the Cascade, Siskiyou, and Klamath Mountains, as well as Klamath Basin specialties. Target birds include Mountain Quail, nesting Sandhill Cranes, dancing Western and Clark’s Grebes, Black Terns, Great Gray Owls, Calliope Hummingbirds, and the bird that will be featured on this year’s Conservation Science Stamp, the White-headed Woodpecker.
The Mountain Bird Festival has received national awards for becoming one of our nation’s leading conservation events. Please join us for the 2015 Mountain Bird Festival and become part of our efforts to elevate bird conservation.
Click here to view a a copy of the press release announcing the 2015 Mountain Bird Festival.
Mindful Birding recognizes that bird watching, by nature, is an outdoor activity that connects participants with nature through an appreciation of the magnificence of birds. With this recognition of the inherent value of birding, the Mindful Birding ethic encourages bird watchers to be mindful toward wildlife, mindful to safety and other people, and mindful of their own birding experience. With such consciousness it is believed that bird watchers will carry a Mindful Birding ethic from the field into their everyday activities, becoming even stronger messengers for and supporters of conservation for birds and people. The Morrissey Family Foundation issued this first Mindful Birding Award in recognition of Klamath Bird Observatory’s efforts to promote birding ethics and conservation through the Mountain Bird Festival.
The Mountain Bird Festival is a unique community conservation event that celebrates the globally outstanding Klamath Siskiyou Region, recognized for its abundance of different habitats and species. The festival offers two days of field trips that will search for mountain bird specialties, such as White-headed Woodpecker, Mountain Quail, Calliope Hummingbird, and Great Gray Owl. The festival also features a fine art auction, live music, local foods and beverages, cocktail parties, and stimulating evening presentations. Klamath Bird Observatory will distribute specific Mindful Birding guidelines to festival attendees and provide training to field trip leaders, who will encourage Mindful Birding practices on field trips.
Klamath Bird Observatory is hosting the 2014 Mountain Bird Festival in partnership with the City of Ashland, the Ashland Chamber of Commerce, ScienceWorks Hands-On Museum, and many other organizations. Click here to access a PDF of this press release.