A rainy trip to search for migrants on Kelleys Island, and conduct a service project at the Glacial Grooves, which are totally cool! This trip was sponsored by our partners at Kelleys Island Audubon Club
An intense study of a single Peregrine Falcon spotted at the Funk Bottom Wildlife Area. This trip was sponsored by our partners at Greater Mohican Audubon Society.
I am often searching for ways to evaluate the success of the the program. Grantors always ask for this. Since this is a BSBO program, my Board wants to know. The media wonders. Parents too. The nature of our program makes success somewhat challenging to assess. We can cite membership figures: For example, currently, more than 100 young people are members of the club. But in the last few days, I received some information that offers perhaps the ultimate measure of our success.
I recently received three separate requests from OYBC members to include me and Kenn as references for jobs. Of course we agreed. A few days ago I received an e-mail from a researcher in Barrow, Alaska. He's studying the breeding ecology of shorebirds on the Arctic Tundra this summer, and one of our OYBC members applied for a position on the team. He was impressed by the young man's application and was following up on his references.
Yesterday I received an e-mail from a graduate student at the University of Kentucky studying the role of genetics and male phenotype in mate choice and success in Dickcissels. One of our OYBC members who will graduate from high school this year had applied for a position with her team. Impressed with the application, she was following up with a series of questions about the applicant.And, finally, in today's mail I received a scholarship recommendation form from a foundation that one of our recently graduated OYBC members had applied to. She is planning to conduct a research project on breeding bird ecology at a large scout camp in Northern Ohio and applied for a scholarship.
I am in no way suggesting that the OYBC is solely responsible for helping to develop this level of interest in these young people. The OYBC is but a single spoke in a very impressive wheel that Ohio spins beautifully. With a thriving birding community that embraces young people, represented by the very supportive and dynamic Ohio Ornithological Society, more than 20 partnering organizations across the state of Ohio that support the OYBC, and, perhaps most importantly, some of the most impressive parents I have ever met, we will continue to encourage, educate, and empower our future conservation leaders.
The OYBC is having a major impact beyond Ohio's borders. To date, we have assisted New York, Illinois, Florida, Connecticut, Georgia, and Oklahoma in forming their own versions of the OYBC. Several other states have inquired about launching clubs too, and many are in the beginning stages of forming clubs for young people based on the success of the OYBC.
I encourage you to visit the OYBC website, and please pay special attention to the fact that adults are encouraged to join as adult supporting members for just $10 a year. For this small donation, you will receive our club's excellent newsletter (filled with articles, trip reports, artwork, and essays..all written by young birders), and help to support this very important program.
Thanks for being patient about penguin photos. I promise to make it up to you with tons of pics SOON!