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It's All About Birds

  • Live Peregrine Nest in Oshkosh
  • Winnebago County Bird Checklist
  • Area Bird (Wildlife) Rehabilitators Contact Information
  • DNR Eagle-Osprey Survey Statistics for NE Wisconsin
  • Birds - Where to find them
  • Bird City Wisconsin
  • Project Feeder Watch
  • Important Bird Areas (IBA)



Live Peregrine Nest in Oshkosh


Winnebago County Bird Checklist


Area Bird (Wildlife) Rehabilitators Contact Info

     Area Wildlife Rehabilitators  


DNR Eagle-Osprey Survey Statistics for NE Wisconsin

     Eagle-Osprey Survey


BIRDS - Where to find them

     For those of you who are interested in knowing what birds are being found where and when, you can visit the website of the Wisconsin Society for Ornithology at: and click on the Find Birds icon at the top of the home page.  This will take you to the reports that are being placed on the Wisbirdn listserve.  You will also find information about how to get on the Wisbirdn membership list and then you will get these sightings directly into your emails.

     If you enjoy listing the birds you find, you might also be interested in the Wisconsin ebird website:   Visit this site and found out more about great places to bird and then how to record your observations.

     Happy Birding and thanks for adding records to Wisconsin bird observations.- Bettie Harriman


Wisconsin Audubon Council members at Goose Pond in October 2010 celebrate Bird City Wisconsin and TogetherGreen grant.  Winnebago Audubon members Carla Hansen and Zaiga Freivalds are on the left side of the banner.

    A coalition led by the Milwaukee Audubon Society, the Wisconsin Bird Conservation Initiative and the Wisconsin Society for Ornithology wants to ensure that Wisconsin’s city folk maintain healthy populations of birds and grow an appreciation for them. They’re developing a new community recognition program: Bird City Wisconsin, which will be modeled on the successful nationwide program Tree City USA, a community improvement project sponsored by the Arbor Day Foundation.

     Wisconsin communities that come together to help protect birds – choosing from an array of different bird conservation activities – can receive designation and public recognition as a Bird City Wisconsin.

With funding from TogetherGreen, an alliance between the National Audubon Society and Toyota, the program will address an increasing problem: the decline of urban bird populations. Chimney Swift populations in Wisconsin, for example, have declined by more than 2% annually for the last 28 years, while the Purple Martin – which nests in colonial boxes often near water – is declining at three times that rate.

    For more information about Bird City Wisconsin check out their website:

   Oshkosh becomes a Bird City!  Click to read Letter and Press Release:

Letter to City of Oshkosh      Bird City Wisconsin Press Release


Help Project FeederWatch Track Backyard Birds
Bird watchers needed to help scientists discover changes in bird populations

     Ithaca, NY—What happens in the backyard should not stay in the backyard—at least when it comes to bird feeders. By sharing information about which birds visit their feeders between November and April, backyard bird watchers can help scientists track changes in bird numbers and movements from year to year, through Project FeederWatch, a citizen-science program from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and Bird Studies Canada.

     Project FeederWatch begins on November 14 and runs through early April. Taking part is easy. Anyone can count the numbers and kinds of birds at their feeders and enter their information on the FeederWatch website. Participants submitted nearly 117,000 checklists last season. Since 1987, more than 40,000 people from the United States and Canada have taken part in the project.
     “To get the most complete picture of bird movements, we always need new sets of eyes to tell us what species are showing up at backyard feeders,” says David Bonter, leader of Project FeederWatch. “Participants always tell us how much fun it is and how good it feels to contribute to our understanding of birds by submitting their sightings.”
     Project FeederWatch is for people of all ages and skill levels. To learn more and to sign up, visit or call the Cornell Lab toll-free at (866) 982-2473. In return for the $15 fee ($12 for Cornell Lab members) participants receive the FeederWatcher’s Handbook, an identification poster of the most common feeder birds, a calendar, complete instructions, and Winter Bird Highlights, an annual summary of FeederWatch findings.
     Participant Nancy Corr of Harrisburg, Oregon, sums up her Project FeederWatch experience: “Thanks for the wonderful opportunity to share our love of birding and to
participate in something meaningful!”



What is an Important Bird Area?

   Important Bird Areas, or IBAs, are sites that provide essential habitat for one or more species of bird.  IBAs include sites for breeding, wintering, and/or migrating birds.  IBAs may be a few acres or thousands of acres, but usually they are discrete sites that stand out from the surrounding landscape.  IBAs may include public or private lands, or both, and they may be protected or unprotected.

   To qualify as an IBA, sites must satisfy at least one of the following criteria. The site must support:

  • Species of conservation concern (e.g. threatened and endangered species)
  • Restricted-ranges species (species vulnerable because they are not widely distributed)
  • Species that are vulnerable because their populations are concentrated in one general habitat type or biome
  • Species, or groups of similar species (such as waterfowl or shorebirds), that are vulnerable because they occur at high densities due to their congregatory behavior

   Identification of a site as an IBA indicates it’s unique importance for birds. Nonetheless, some IBAs are of greater significance than others. A site may be important at the global, continental, or state level. The IBA identification process provides a date-driven means for cataloging the most important sites for birds throughout the country and the world. The use of a hierarchical classification system further helps to establish priorities for conservation efforts.

   Throughout the IBA process, the status of sites are characterized by the following terms: Potential, Nominated, Identified, Recognized, Pending, Rejected, Delisted, Merged.

What is the Status of the IBA Program?

   BirdLife International is a global coalition of more than 100 country partner organizations. The IBA program was initiated by BirdLife International in Europe in the 1980’s. Since then, over 8,000 sites in 178 countries have been identified as Important Bird Areas, with many national and regional IBA inventories published in 19 languages. Hundreds of these sites and millions of acres have received better protection as a result of the IBA Program.

   As the United States Partner of BirdLife International, the National Audubon Society administers the IBA Program in the U.S.  Audubon launched its IBA initiative in 1995, establishing programs state by state. State-based IBA programs provide conservation leaders with the flexibility to tailor the program to their individual state needs, and they also give Audubon members and local volunteers the greatest opportunities to protect sites in their communities.

How will IBAs help birds?

   The IBA Program helps birds by setting science-based priorities for habitat conservation and promoting positive action to safeguard vital bird habitats.

What You Can Do

   Read more about IBAs and what you can do to help identify, monitor, and conserve Important Bird Areas.

Wisconsin’s Important Bird Areas Program

   In May, 2001 partners in Wisconsin launched the Wisconsin Bird Conservation Initiative (WBCI). Modeled after the North American Conservation Initiative (NABCI), this historic partnership is dedicated to delivering “the full spectrum of bird conservation emphasizing voluntary stewardship”. WBCI currently has over 150 endorsing partners and is engaged in wide variety of bird conservation activities throughout Wisconsin, ranging from conservation planning, to monitoring, to outreach and education. It is the first statewide all-bird conservation initiative of its kind in the United States.

   One of the major projects that WBCI undertook from its inception was the Important Bird Areas program.  Read more at

Official IBAs in our area:        Horicon Marsh (Dodge/Fond du Lac Co.)                                                              Woodland Dunes Nature Preserve (Manitowoc Co.)

Approved IBAs in our area:   North Kettle Moraine (Fond du Lac/Sheboygan Co.)

                                                White River Marsh (Green Lake Co.)

Nominated IBAs in our area:  Rat River State Wildlife Area (Winnebago Co.)

                                                 Rush Lake (Winnebago/Fond du Lac Co.)

For a complete list and map see