Date of this Version
Paseka, "NOU Spring Field Days and Annual Meeting, Kimball, May 20–22, 2016," from Nebraska Bird Review (June 2016) 84(2).
The annual meeting of the Nebraska Ornithologists' Union was held at the Kimball Event Center on May 20–22, 2016, and was organized by Robin Harding and Betty Grenon. Although it was a long drive for most, 75 birders attended, including guests from Iowa, South Dakota, Wyoming, Colorado, and Arkansas.
On Friday evening, President Dan Leger presented a Michael Forsberg photograph of Burrowing Owls to Betty Grenon in appreciation for her many years of service as Treasurer. The evening program continued with a presentation by Angela Dwyer and Larry Snyder of the Bird Conservancy of the Rockies, formerly known as the Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory. The Bird Conservancy and Nebraska Prairie Partners are responsible for implementing the Mountain Plover nest protection program. They began counting Mountain Plovers in 2001 and later created a nest incentive program with modest payments to landowners who are willing to have plover nests in their agricultural fields marked with stakes to prevent tillage of that area of the field. Approximately 5% of the total population of 12,500 Mountain Plovers nests in Nebraska and the species is listed as "Near Threatened" by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. The birds often construct two nest scrapes. The female lays a clutch of eggs in one, leaves the male to incubate that one, and then goes on to lay another clutch in the second scrape, which she then incubates.
Field trips on Saturday and Sunday morning were led by Kathy DeLara, Bill Flack, Dave Heidt, Wayne Mollhoff, and Don and Janis Paseka. Destinations included Gotte Park in Kimball, Oliver Reservoir, Bushnell, I-80 Exit 1, the Pine Bluffs area in Wyoming, Mountain Plover nests south of Kimball, Golden Eagle nest south of Potter, Hackberry Canyon, Pumpkin Creek, Wildcat Hills State Recreation Area, Scottsbluff sewage lagoons, and Wright's Gap Road.
Total species count for the weekend meeting was 156.