Our 2012 Accomplishments
Species and Habitat Preservation ...to preserve...
- A lot of our work is behind the scenes and to that end we were able to steer our partners at Google to a more environmentally friendly creek-crossing design at Stevens Creek. Our advice was to concentrate on one crossing, not two.
- Similarly, our members will be as amazed as we are with the development of a bird friendly landscaping and architecture plan for Facebook's west bayfront campus. This will be a destination location for South Bay visitors and we are proud to have helped steer Facebook staff and consultants in this direction.
- After forging an agreement with NextEra Wind Energy to accelerate repowering at Altamont Pass, we worked closely with the Attorney General's office and East Bay Regional Parks to see that $400,000 in mitigation fees were put to use in Golden Eagle studies. These studies will inform future repowering efforts and continue to aid in reducing raptor mortality in this critical habitat.
- We are currently fighting in San Jose for Burrowing Owl habitat and working diligently to see that the Habitat Conservation Plan for the county is adopted and implemented.
Habitat Restoration ...to restore...
- Our collaborative work with the City of Mt. View to develop a new Burrowing Owl Management Plan has included restoration events with students from San Jose State.
- Volunteers pitched in to restore habitats at Shoreline at Mountain View and the Water Pollution Control Plant in Alviso. The Burrowing Owls in both locations say "thank you!"
- Our Environmental Action Committee continues to play a lead role in shaping San Jose's riparian ordinance which will protect some of the last remaining high quality riparian habitat in the county.
- At the end of 2012, we're on the verge of approval for the county's Habitat Conservation Plan. Years of meetings, negotiating, feedback and input will pay off in strategic and thoughtfully planned habitat conservation for thousands of acres of open space, riparian corridors, wetlands, and woodlands.
- Our nest box monitors continue to amaze, monitoring over 100 nestbox trails in the county and over 1,300 nest boxes. These efforts have resulted in a phenomenal increase in the nesting and fledging success of our Western Bluebirds and other cavity nesting species.
For the love of birds ...to enjoy...
- Our volunteers continue to lead the Bay Area with four Christmas Bird counts and one summer count so that we all can participate in Citizen Science, adding to our understanding of local bird populations.
- The heart of our adult education offerings is our weekend field trips, and our devoted and dedicated expert leaders had groups out most every weekend of the year. Once again we had over 100 field trip adventures and over 1,200 field participants.
- Our member meetings ranged from pure science to pure fun with the Falklands, South Georgia Island, the birds of Colombia, and the science of bird navigation. For those who have missed our annual potluck at McClellan Ranch, it's the 3rd Wednesday in June. Always an enjoyable coming together of our clan. Hold that date!
- Our Field Seminars provided a broad range of opportunities for our members from Yuba Pass, local Raptor hotspots, Klamath Basin, Mono Basin, and our first out-of-country adventure, Costa Rica.
Leading Through Education ...to foster public awareness...
- Our Wetlands Discovery Program, now in its 24th year, provided 21 field trips for 3rd-6th-grade students. Our total student outreach effort reached over 2500 underserved Title 1 students.
- Our Digging Deeper collaborative has caught the attention of other regions and funding collaboratives, and is now being replicated in Los Angeles and Hawaii.
- We were delighted to complement our education intern with a second-language intern this past year. The program provided so much value to our education efforts that we've continued with the two-intern model for the fall and plan to continue this approach through the entire school year. Your support made this high-impact difference!
- We are never so popular as we are when communities are planning Earth Day events. Volunteers and staff educated hundreds of participants at 13 different Earth day events.
Updated December 2012
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2012 Highlight! Three years of diligence pays off in an historic decision to establish a Burrowing Owl preserve, Burrowing Owl habitat enhancements, Burrowing Owl management practices and a Burrowing Owl Biologist. Hats off to our volunteers who worked so hard to make this happen and Mountain View's City Council and staff who had the vision and conviction to do the right thing.