March 20 / Eric Eaton
Colorful Colorado… Beetles
Beetles account for roughly one quarter of all animal diversity, and Colorado boasts spectacular examples from ladybugs to weevils, even fireflies. Come and delight in the insect eye candy, and be amazed by the bizarre lifestyles of these six-legged creatures. You will be relieved to learn that bark beetles can be good for the forest, and shocked to find that there are some beetles you probably shouldn’t touch. Biodiversity doesn’t get any better than this!
Eric R. Eaton is one of our most entertaining and educational speakers. You know him as “Bug Eric” on the internet and social media. He is lead author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America and co-author of the second edition of Insects Did It First. The latter will be available for sale and signing after the presentation.
April 17 / Bill Eden
Birding Senegal and The Gambia
In November, 2016, Bill Eden traveled with five other participants and a guide to explore the bird life of the western Africa countries of Senegal and The Gambia. The field guide Birds of Senegal and The Gambia, by Borrow and Demey, lists 680 bird species found in these two countries. Although Senegal and The Gambia may not have the avian notoriety of Kenya, they are excellent places to see birds. Our trip took us along both sides of the Gambia River. We saw such birds as the African Pygmy Kingfisher, Northern Carmine Bee-eater, the Abyssinian Ground Roller, Giant Kingfisher, and the “must see” Egyptian Plover.
Bill grew up in New York State with parents who enjoyed nature. His early summers were spent at their camp in the Adirondack Mountains where there were plenty of birds.
In 1975 Bill moved to Colorado to pursue a Masters Degree at CSU.He then worked at the Colorado Department of Health and Environment directing their public health nutrition Programs. He continued to pursue his interests in birds and birding.
In early 2006, Bill participated in Hugh and Urling Kingery’s beginning birding class and then became a student in the ASGD’s year-long Master Birder Program. He then spent nine years on the Master Birding Program’s steering committee. Bill has also worked with Meredith McBurney at the Chatfield bird banding station for eight years.
Bill has enjoyed many birding trips throughout the United States as well as birding in over 20 countries such as Malaysian Borneo, Madagascar, Brazil, Honduras, Iceland, Uganda and Tanzania (some with his wife Joan). He incorporates an interest in wildlife photography by photographing birds, mammals and other animals. Bill also enjoys gardening and attracting birds to his yard. So far he has recorded 56 species.
Northern Carmine Bee-eater photo by Steve Garvie from Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland – Northern Carmine Bee-eater (Merops nubicus)Uploaded by Snowmanradio, CC BY-SA 2.0
Come join us!
Aiken Audubon programs are free and open to the public. They are held at Bear Creek Nature Center, located at 245 Bear Creek Road, Colorado Springs, 80906. Coffee, snacks, and socializing begins at 6:30 pm and programs begin at 7 pm.
Aiken’s weather cancellation policy: Sometimes inclement weather may cause us to cancel an Aiken meeting. If this happens, a decision will be made by 1 pm on the meeting date. Notification will be placed here our website, on our Facebook page, and sent out through our email notification list. In addition, a message will be posted on the CoBirds Listserv, which many Aiken birders subscribe to. If there is any doubt, please do not hesitate to contact any Aiken board members via telephone. Always, your safety is first so use your own judgement when coming to a meeting.
Finally, if you have ideas or would like to present a program at one of our meetings, please contact program chair Diane Luck at [email protected].