Western Great Lakes Bird & Bat Observatory

Headquarters at Forest Beach Migratory Preserve

Director Updates

Director's Report – June 2015 - Western Great Lakes Bird & Bat Observatory

William P. Mueller

MLMMN News

Dr. Amber Roth of Michigan Technological University worked half-time for WGLBBO throughout 2014, directing the activities of the Midwest Landbird Migration Monitoring Network. Dr. Roth shepherded the
development of the Network's Strategic Plan (see http://wglbbo.org/what-we-do/midwest-landbird-migration-monitoring-network), which was completed and published in February of 2015. Dr. Roth and WGLBBO Director Bill Mueller submitted a proposal to the USFWS this winter to extend funding for Dr. Roth's position for an additional two years, so that she can oversee implementation of the Strategic Plan. That grant has been approved, and work will begin soon.

Midwest Aerial Insectivore Working Group

I am the new co-chair of the Midwest Aerial Insectivore Working Group, part of the Midwest Coordinated Bird Monitoring Partnership. The Working Group has various activities underway;

see them at: http://midwestbirdmonitoring.ning.com/group/midwest-aerial-insectivores

The Working Group has a new Facebook Page - see it at:https://www.facebook.com/groups/1581381955435390/

Waterbird Watch

Calvin Brennan has completed his spring Waterbird Watch season. He tallied 186,266 birds of 184 species. Both are new high counts. Reports will be submitted for publication this summer for both the fall 2014 and spring 2015 seasons.

Wisconsin Breeding Bird Atlas II

I have traveled over 2,000 miles so far this year giving breeding bird atlas workshops/presentations all around WI with Mike Reese, Director of Volunteers for WBBAII.

Banding Station

Our spring banding season has gone extremely well.  Stephanie Beilke has had help from me, master bander Al Sherkow and his wife Debbie Hartmann, Vicki Piaskowski, Robin Squier, Natalie Miller, Jana Viel, Katie Weber, Mike Schlotfeldt, Joel Trick, Calvin Brennan, and Bryan Lenz. Our high count day saw us banding 70 individuals, and our season total (still entering data) is approximately 300+ birds -- there will be much more news to come on this program.

Outreach and Presentations

I presented at the following events, in addition to the atlas workshops:

  • •Sheboygan Audubon – The Ecology of Chimney Swifts – Feb. 12
  • Friends of Cedarburg Bog – volunteers & nestboxes event – Feb. 20
  • Fond du Lac Audubon – State of the Birds – Mar. 11
  • Wehr Nature Center – Offshore Waterfowl Research & Monitoring – Mar. 18
  • Shawn Graff and I presented at the annual Great Lakes Chapter meeting of the Society for Ecological Restoration – Mar. 28
  • BF Goss Bird Club – The Long Walk – Apr. 19
  • Shawn Graff, Dr. Gary Casper, and I presented at the Clean Rivers, Clean Lake Conference for the Southeastern Wisconsin Watersheds Trust – Apr. 30

Wisconsin Bird Conservation Initiative

I serve on the Steering Committee of WBCI, and as co-chair of WBCI's Issues Committee. Our work products include the publications linked here: http://www.wisconsinbirds.org/issuespapers.htm.