Dear Friends,

We hope you all remembered to turn your clocks ahead! The days are getting longer and we're looking forward to fair, birdwatching weather. Featured in this month's eNews is an opportunity to learn how to get more involved with citizen science. Between the Rosy-Finch surveys and the quickly approaching Curlew surveys, we hope you'll flap into spring well prepared to look for some birds.

Yours in Conservation,
Montana Audubon Staff
Save the Date! Wings Across the Big Sky Festival Dates Announced!
Montana Audubon's annual event, Wings Across the Big Sky, will take place in Lewistown on June 3rd-5th. Keep your eyes and ears open for registration dates!
Long Billed Curlew Surveys and Training on the Horizon!
This year, we are bolstering our efforts to collect valuable data on the Long-Billed Curlew and we need your help! An iconic species of Montana and the intermountain grassland basins of North America, Long-Billed Curlew populations have been declining across their range and more research on the breeding populations of Montana is critical to the long-term health of the species. With their flamboyant “curleee” and distinguished strut, this grassland bird makes a wonderful subject. Leading up to the first survey period in early-April, we will be hosting a training to introduce volunteer researchers to these treasured shorebirds of Montana. Please join us on March 31st for a virtual training that will cover Long-Billed Curlew ecology and identification as well as the survey protocols for this critically important research. You can register for the training HERE.
The Long-Billed Curlew Citizen Science survey will take place from 
April 8 - May 7 and May 8 - May 31
For any further question, you can get in touch with Peter Dudley at
Rosy-Finch Surveys Aren't Done Yet!

If you haven't participated in the first few rounds of Rosy finch feeder surveys, it's not too late! Please join Montana Audubon and Utah's Sageland Collaborative in our effort to learn more about Rosy-Finches populations and their winter distribution. Rosy-Finches are fascinating birds that breed exclusively in Montana's highest elevations, nearly always around rugged, inaccessible cliffs. This makes breeding surveys of these species extremely challenging. But thankfully, you don't need a heavy backpack and climbing equipment to help us monitor the two Rosy-Finch species that occur in Montana. Our Black Rosy-Finches and Gray-crowned Rosy-Finches spend much of the winter at lower elevations, in valleys and foothills, often around towns and rural homes where they sometimes congregate around bird feeders in large flocks. Please help us better understand these two unique, vulnerable species by carrying out 20-minute feeder surveys once a month or whenever you have the opportunity, from now until the end of April. These surveys are valuable even if you don’t see any Rosy-Finches at your feeders. If you are interested in participating or would like to learn more about this citizen science project please click HERE on the link, where you can find a feeder survey instructional video, an informational brochure PDF which includes a survey protocol and a printable datasheet, and more information about this project!
Audubon Conservation Ranching- March is Women in Ranching Month
To celebrate Women’s History Month, Audubon’s Conservation Ranching Initiative is introducing you to the incredible Women Initiative in a weekly content series. These women don’t let anything stand in their way, working around the clock in all weather conditions fiercely defending birds, the land, their animals, and the food we eat. We asked questions, and they responded with fun, insightful, and birdy answers. Montana Audubon will share a new Q&A from a different region and group of ranchers each week on our social media platforms! 

We’ll feature three innovative Montana ranchers, Heather Bilden, Kristi Patterson, and Jaimie Stoltzfus. Bilden owns and operates the fourth-generation, family-owned, Coulee Creek Ranch in Lavina. She sells beef products direct to consumers from the ranch website. Patterson and Stoltzfus, respectively the owner and manager, team up to run the P Bar Ranch in McLeod. They sell beef products direct to consumers under the brand Cowgirl Meat Co. Both ranches use regenerative grazing practices, and produce 100% grass-fed, Bird-friendly Certified beef. Stay tuned for more amazing Women in Ranching profiles coming this month via Montana Audubon’s social media platforms and website.

Picture is Jaimie Stolzfus, Ranch Manager at P Bar Ranch, McLeod, MT
See our Montana Audubon Center March eNews HERE!
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Montana Audubon