PAST “WINDOW ON NATURE”window-on-nature-2


DATE: December 7, 2017, 5 PM –  YOUTUBE VIDEO
PROGRAM: “Holiday Dinner and Volunteer Recognition Celebration”
SCHEDULE: 5 PM – Social Time,  5:30 PM – Dinner,  6:30 PM Award Presentations
Marco Polo Chicken: Grilled chicken and vegetables sauteed in a scampi butter and wine sauce, garnished with feta cheese. Pasta Primavera: Fresh vegetables sauteed and tossed in a creamy Alfredo sauce over fettuccini. Country Pot Roast: served with vegetables, potatoes and gravy.
SIDE DISHES:  Au Gratin Potatoes and Herb Roasted Red Potatoes.
Entrees will be served with our fresh seasonal vegetables. All entrees include fresh baked bread sticks and chef’s specialty dessert tray with choice of coffee, tea or sodas. Sales tax and tip are included.
COST: $22.00/person.
Event was held in the back “patio” room, so there are no stairs involved.
This event was a total success and every seat was filled to the room’s capacity of 50 individuals.

Attendees arrived early to mingle and socialize and  then settled in for a tasty holiday dinner, during which, Founding President, Professor Carl Tomoff visited each table, issuing his warm, heartfelt appreciation for all along with his personal holiday greeting. Service was great with several the Gurley Street Grill servers keeping glasses full and assisting wherever needed.

Following dinner Past President Sue Drown, now a Board Member, opened the Volunteer Recognition portion of the evening with her usual charm and grace, thanking the members for their support through the year and wishing all a great holiday season.  Sue then introduced  Professor Tomoff who has served as awards presenter for all of PAS’s previous Volunteer Recognition events. A list of recipients is listed below

David Frichette, PAS Certificate of Appreciation
Sue Lord, Founder and Leader of the Junior Prescott Audubon Society Nature Club at Abia Judd, NAS, Meritorious           Service Award.
Rebecca Davis, NAS, Meritorious Service Award
Karen O’Neil, IBA Coordinator, NAS, Audubon Arizona, Meritorious Service Award, presented by Audubon Arizona Director of Bird Conservation,Tice Supplee and Audubon Arizona Executive Director, Sonia Perillo.
Sue Drown, PAS Founders’ Award
Russ Chappell, PAS, Founders’ Award

SPECIAL THANKS: A special thanks to some behind the scene folks who quietly made this event memorable… Doug Iverson, PAS Secretary, who coordinated the event, PAS’s dedicated and brilliant Treasurer, Laura Rhoden who managed the fiscal side of things, and Robert Milligan, Executive Director, Prescott Media Center, who coordinated audio and video support for the event.  Thank you folks for you exceptional support and dedication to the Chapter..

DATE: October 26, 2017, 7:00 PM  YOUTUBE VIDEO
“Mixing Birding and Bird Photography (and Living to Tell about It!)”
Clay Taylor, Swarovski Optik

QUOTE FROM CLAY: “When I started birding 40 years ago, most birders carried sketchpads in order to document their sightings.  I carried a camera.  When the field trip had made their identifications and was ready to move on, I wanted to stay and take pictures.”

COMMENTS: A very special evening revolving around the fascinating and fast grow hobby of digiscoping. Attendees learned how to adapt their cellphone or camera to take high quality images through an existing recreational optic, from one of the pioneers in the field, Clay Taylor. A longtime employee and leader within Swarovski Optik, Clay has a wealth of knowledge in both the photography and birding fields and is an expert in how the two passions can successfully be merged. The meeting was FREE and open to the public!

VIDEO PREVIEW: Click HERE for a previous presentation by Clay from 2015. With the rapid growth in technology Clay’s visit with us provided the latest information regarding the current state of the art field of digiscoping!

DATE: September 28, 2017, 7:00 PM  YOUTUBE VIDEO
“A Love Affair with Hummingbirds”
Karen Krebbs
COMMENTS: Conservation Biologist Karen Krebbs will entertain you with hummingbird facts and fun!  Karen has been studying hummingbirds for more than 30 years and will share her knowledge on hummingbird identification, entertaining behavior, nesting biology, and ways to attract these tiny jewels to your garden and home.  Arizona is home to an exciting diversity of hummingbird species and these small energetic pollinators will make you smile and laugh!

BIOGRAPHY: Karen worked at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum for more than 26 years and has extensive knowledge of birds, mammals, deserts, and animal adaptations and behavior.  Her passion for hummingbirds has resulted in a book, book chapters, scientific papers, and also a husbandry manual for captive hummingbirds for the Association of Zoos and Aquariums.  She is writing a second book on hummingbirds and her experiences with these flying jewels.  Her research on hummingbirds includes migration, nesting biology, behavior, song development, and longevity.  Karen regularly advises zoological institutions and aviaries on the proper care and husbandry of captive hummingbirds.  She has conducted educational workshops and seminars on birds for various organizations, schools, yearly bird festivals, and local bird groups.  Karen has also studied bats for more than 30 years and carries out lectures and workshops for bats.  She has led and co-led natural history trips in Arizona, New Mexico, Texas, Mexico, Baja, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Galapagos, and Africa.  Karen has a B.Sc. degree in Wildlife & Fisheries Science from the University of Arizona and has lived in Arizona for more than 50 years. Her two latest books are Desert Life: A Guide to the Southwest’s Iconic Animals & Plants & How They Survive and Desert Life of the Southwest Activity Book.

DATE: May 25, 2017 7:00 PM (4th Thursday)  YOUTUBE VIDEO
Trinity Presbyterian Church, 630 Park Avenue, Prescott
“Prescott Monarch Butterflies: The Latest Story”
Cathy Palm-Gessner and Bob Gessner
HOST: Kathy Malm
COMMENTS: In 2016, over 2,000 monarchs were spotted in the Prescott area.  Cathy and Bob discussed how our local monarch population increase compares with the rest of the Southwest, California and Mexico.  Also, this year for the first time, monarchs tagged in the Prescott area were spotted in overwintering sites in California. They also explained the factors that determine if monarchs migrate to California or Mexico.

DATE: April 20, 2017  7:00 PM (3rd Thursday)  YOUTUBE VIDEO
LOCATION: Trinity Presbyterian Church, 630 Park Avenue, Prescott
SPEAKER:  Gary Emerson, PAS Member and Adventurer
Gary’s five visits to Australia have left him with a passion for the people, habitat and wildlife of Australia.  Through experiences and photos from visits to the Outback, Adelaide and Darwin regions, Gary  spotlighted the beauty and diversity he has witnessed and experienced during these visits.  A speaker with the Parks Interpretive Sky Program, and an experienced photographer, Gary’s presentation was professional, informative, entertaining and exciting.

Gary began his career in astronomy as a lunar observer for Northwestern University in Las Cruces, New Mexico. He spent the rest of his career in Boulder, Colorado, where he worked as a solar observer at the National Center for Atmospheric Research and as an astronomy observer at the University of Colorado’s Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics.

After two decades, Gary switched to space science and finished his career at Ball Aerospace in Boulder, helping to design and build spacecraft and instruments for use in space, including most of those on the Hubble Space Telescope. Gary’s travels have taken him to all seven continents including Antarctica, where he spent a month at the South Pole.

DATE: March 23, 2017  7:00 PM (4th Thursday)  YOUTUBE VIDEO
LOCATION: Trinity Presbyterian Church, 630 Park Avenue, Prescott
PROGRAM: “John Muir: Watch, Pray and Fight!” plus Winners from the Northern Arizona Science/Engineering Fair held on February 24, 2017!
SPEAKER:  Professor Doug Hulmes, Arizona Humanities, Prescott College
HOST: Doug Iverson

What is a Chautauqua?  Chautauquans are scholars who portray historical characters.  We had John Muir who  represented an environmental perspective in the West, and brought to life the ideas that began during the nineteenth century in response to the wide scale destruction of public lands by some of the early pioneers.  The character of John Muir made make a 40 minute presentation, and will then tok questions from the audience as the character, and then took questions as a scholar of John Muir.John Muir has been referred to a naturalist, explorer, inventor, and philosopher.  A Scottish immigrant, John spent much of his adult life exploring and studying the Sierras and Alaska.   The author of more than two-dozen books, John gained respect as the nation’s foremost spokesperson for wilderness and the ideas of preservation and reverence for life.  He promoted the designation of Yosemite, Grand Canyon, and Petrified Forest National Parks, and was one of the founders and first president of the Sierra Club in 1892.Doug Hulmes performed John Muir for several years under a contract with the Arizona Humanities Council on a scholar speaker’s bureau.  He is a Professor of Environmental Studies at Prescott College, where he teaches courses in ecology, environmental education, and environmental history and philosophy. Doug received an award for outstanding presenter at the National Wilderness Rangers Conference in Durango, Colorado, for his performance of John Muir.  In September 2004, Doug was invited to perform in Washington D. C. for the 40th Anniversary Celebration of the Wilderness Act.  In 2009, Doug performed for the opening of an International Conference on Friluftsliv at Nord Trøndelag University in Norway.  He is presently researching the traditions, mythology and folklore of planting sacred trees on farms in Norway and Sweden.

Also, all five of the 2017 Northern Arizona Science/Engineering Fair winners, along with family and friends where present along with their displays.  Member of the audience had the opportunity to discuss the projects and share some appreciation and encouragement with the winners.

DATE: February 23, 2017  7:00 PM (4th Thursday)  YOUTUBE VIDEO
TIME: 7:00 PM
Trinity Presbyterian Church, 630 Park Avenue, Prescott
PROGRAM: “Exotic Birding in India
PAS, IBA Coordinator, Karen O’Neil
HOST: Laura Rhoden
COMMENTS: Karen shared exciting photos and experiences relating to her birding expedition to the exotic land of India with the American Birding Association.

DATE: January 26, 2017  7:00 PM (4th Thursday)  YOUTUBE VIDEO
7:00 PM
LOCATION: Trinity Presbyterian Church, 630 Park Avenue, Prescott
PROGRAM: “Baffin Island – You Can’t Bird Any Further North Than This!”

SPEAKER: Brent Bitz, Northern Arizona Audubon Society board member, who is active in environmental issues, primarily focusing on preserving our water resources and related riparian habitat.
HOST: Suzette Russi

Brent enthralled the audience with “chilling” stories and photos about a June 2015 trip he made to Baffin Island, which is directly across from Greenland and is entirely above the Artic Circle.  Along with birds such as Snow Buntings, Northern Wheatears, Lapland Longspurs, Long-tailed Ducks, Thick-billed Murres, King and Common Eider, Black Guillemots, and rare Ivory Gulls, he counts Narwhals and Polar Bears among the highlights of his trip. Bitz went there to hike and bird but his experience in this land of the midnight sun was so much more than that.With an area of 1,500,000 square miles, the Canadian North is a land that occupies a special place in the hearts of Canadians; much like the American West used to for this country. Within this vast land lies the Canadian Arctic Archipelago, home to 36,500 islands, some of which are among the largest in the world.

Baffin Island is situated directly across from Greenland and is virtually entirely above the Arctic Circle (66’ north). At 196,000 sq. mi., it is the fifth largest island in the world but only has 11,000 people, most of whom are Inuit, the native peoples of the Canadian North.On his June 2015 trip, Bitz started in Iqaluit, capital of the Canadian Territory of Nunavut; his hikes in the soggy tundra along the frozen Sylvia Grinnell River revealed abundant Snow Buntings, Northern Wheatears, Lapland Longspurs and Long-tailed Duck.However, his real destination was Pond Inlet, a small Inuit community located on the northern end of the island. Located at 72’ north, it is one of the northernmost communities in the world. Unless you are an ornithological researcher or in the military, it is almost impossible to bird from land further north anywhere in the world.Even in June, there are large areas of solid ice flows and the edges of those flows are very productive. Joining an Inuit supported tour, Brent and his fellow birders traveled by komatic, the traditional Inuit sled now drawn by snowmobile, for eight hours to the edge of the ice. Camping on the ice flow in Baffin Bay and spending all waking hours out doors in the land of the midnight sun, Brent saw multitudes of Thick-billed Murres, King and Common Eider and Black Guillemots. Harassing all of these were Pomarine, Parasitic and Long-tailed Jaegers. Arctic Fox and Gyrfalcon visited the camp.Bitz says that it is hard to name the highlight of his visit. Was it the hundreds of Narwhales within yards of the flow edge, the Polar Bears wandering nearby or the rare Ivory Gulls? Brent is a NAAS Board Member and active in environmental issues, primarily focusing on preserving our water resources and related riparian habitat.

DATE: December 1, 2016  5:00 PM – 8:30 PM (1st Thursday)  YOUTUBE VIDEO
LOCATION: Trinity Presbyterian Church, 630 Park Avenue, Prescott  MAP
PROGRAM: “PAS Annual Potluck Dinner and Volunteer Recognition Ceremony“ POSTER
MASTER OF CEREMONY:  Prescott Audubon Society, Founding President, Professor Carl Tomoff
COMMENTS: This was our 6th annual, combination Potluck Dinner and Volunteer Recognition Ceremony.  Food setup was from 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM, with dining from 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM… followed immediately by award presentations.

As always, there was a diverse selection of tasty food, drink and a lot of deserts!  Our wonderful hospitality ladies, Susan Anderson and Mary Jane Cisneros managed the potluck with style, grace and expertise… and we thank them for all their planning, preparation and execution throughout the evening.

We were once again honored to have Professor Carl Tomoff, our Founding President, officiate during the Volunteer Recognition Ceremony.  Professor Tomoff’s support of the Chapter during the past 38 years, in a variety of areas, makes his service as MC special for all, especially the awardees.

Jay and Goldie Israel, PAS Certificate of Appreciation
Freddie Cisneros, PAS Certificate of Appreciation
Mary Trevor, PAS, Certificate of Appreciation
Trinity Presbyterian Church, NAS, Presidential Recognition Award (Received by Joe Place)
Douglas Iverson, NAS, Meritorious Service Award
Pat Sperry, NAS, Meritorious Service Award
Anthony J. Krzysik, NAS, Great Egret Award (Received by his wife Mary Krzysik)
Kathy Wingert, PAS, Founders Award

SPECIAL THANKS: Thanks to all who helped organize this event, contributed their favorite dishes, and made the evening a success. These events are about socializing, eating and sharing quality time with folks of like interests… and of course, recognizing those very special folks who contribute to making the Prescott Audubon Society an important member of the Prescott community, while fulfilling it’s mission on behalf of our members, the habitat and environment, and the National Audubon Society.

DATE: October 27, 2016  7:00 PM (4th Thursday)  YOUTUBE VIDEO
LOCATION: Trinity Presbyterian Church, 630 Park Avenue, Prescott
PROGRAM: Penguins to Polar Bears: Adventures of a Wildlife Photographer
SPEAKER:  Beth Davidow  Check out the WorldWild Production  WEBSITE

HOST: Rebecca Davis
What a great event!  Approximately 85 attendees were entertained with an evening of nature photos and video worthy of a National Geographic or Smithsonian event as Beth share a small glimpse into her passion for nature, wildlife and life it’s self.  The subject matter, quality and presentation of her WorldWild Productions imaging was breathtaking!  Natural history, adventure tales, and photography tips were interwoven into this fun, exciting and informative presentation.

Beth’s interest in the natural world, and her desire to share it with others in order to help preserve and protect wild animals and wild lands, has taken her from Arctic to Antarctic regions.  She spent 5 weeks as a naturalist guide with the polar bears of Manitoba, traveled 14 times to Antarctica to perambulate with penguins, lived and worked in Alaska among moose, caribou, grizzly bears, and wolves, and has traveled throughout the United States to photograph many species.

DATE: September 22, 2016  7:00 PM (4th Thursday)  YOUTUBE VIDEO
LOCATION: Trinity Presbyterian Church, 630 Park Avenue, Prescott
PROGRAM: “Leslie Canyon and San Bernardino National Wildlife Refuges: Managing Fish and Wildlife along the Arizona-Sonora Border
SPEAKER:  U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Leslie Canyon and San Bernardino Wildlife Refuges Manager, Bill Radke
HOST: Sue Drown
COMMENTS: Wildlife Refuge Manager, Bill Radker presented a detailed and interesting view into the two areas he manages, as well as the function of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service and its responsibilities and interaction with the local land owners as they work to create the very best environment and habitat for their beautiful wildlife.  His photos were spectacular, his presentation entertaining and humorous, as well as professional and on target.  A great time was had by all in attendance and PAS is discussing taking Bill up on his offer to visit these two beautiful WIldlife Refuges.

Prior to Bll’s presentation a voice vote approval of the 2017 Prescott Audubon Society Board Members was completed, and following the presentation Bill continued discussing the refuges with member during the refreshment and social portion of the evening.  Thanks for a great presentation… come see us again Bill!

DATE: May 26, 2016   7:00 PM (4th Thursday, last meeting of the season)  YOUTUBE VIDEO
7:00 PM
LOCATION: Trinity Presbyterian Church, 630 Park Avenue, Prescott
PROGRAM: “Beautiful Birds of Belize

SPEAKER: Eric Moore
Kathy Malm
Eric presented photos and information regarding the wildlife and habitat of Belize from his recent trip.  It was a great way to close out our season before our three month summer break! The meeting was attended by approximately 80 individuals and Eric entertained everyone with stories and antidotes mixed with his uncanny recall of the multitude of species he found in Belize. He also announced Jay’s has opened a third store location, in Flagstaff and made the comment that one of his new Flagstaff customers said, “Oh, so this is chain of stores” which surprised him, and brought laughter from all of us who know him as our local birding guru! This was the first meeting that PAS has video taped a program for showing on local community TV.  Once the footage has been edited a link on the website will be provided for your viewing pleasure.

After the summer has passed we will be back on Sptember 22 and resume our presentations.  Hope your summer is filled with great birding, peaceful relaxation and the multiple blessings in our beautiful natural surroundings.

DATE: April 28, 2016 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: Landscaping for Backyard Habitat
SPEAKER: Steve Morgan, Owner, Landscapes for Life
HOST: Russ Chappell
REPORT: For the past 18 years, Steve has focused on creating landscapes with plant species that are native to the southwest region, and particularly those found in the Central Highlands. His specialties include entries, habitat gardens, water features, creating outdoor living spaces, and water harvesting. He was the designer of several highly successful school habitat gardens in Central Arizona. These were developed in partnership with the Highlands Center for Natural History. His work has been featured in both Sunset Magazine and Phoenix Home and Garden Magazine.

Steve has over 30 years Landscape Design / Build experience in the Southwest including 3 years with Harlow & Co. in Tucson, AZ, 12 years as owner of Mariposa Design, and 6 years with T. Barnabas Kane & Associates Landscape Architecture. He taught for 15 years as an adjunct instructor at Yavapai College where his focus was on Landscape Design courses for the homeowner. Steve continues to teach at a variety of public events throughout the southwest. He now also designs and creates specialized steel landscape elements: sculptures, screens, rails, gates and shade structures.

DATE: March 24, 2016 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: “Raptors in the Modern World  A.R.E. WEBSITE
SPEAKER(S): Paul and Anne Schnell
HOST: Rich Schooler

This exciting program was filled with the history of falconry, habitat management and environmental information relating to these magnificent raptors.  The Schnell’s years of experience in a vast variety of nature and wildlife fields was evident with the in-depth explanations Paul and Anne provided during the evening. Their program showcased
several beautiful birds from their collection of 14. The audience was entertained by, Stihl a Saw-whet Owl, Smokey a Western Screech Owl, Goliath an Eagle Owl, Emily, a Swainson’s Hawk, Hilda an African Hawk Eagle and Coda a Harris’s Hawk.

FREE FLIGHT DEMONSTRATION: To closed the presentation, Paul and Anne selected a young man and woman to assist with the promised in-flight demonstration with Coda the Harris’ Hawk. Coda flew from Paul in the front of the room to the gloved hand of the young lady in the back of the room, and then to the a T-pole held by a young man on the right side of the room.  Coda then returned to Paul!  The audience were visibly impressed and excited with this exciting conclusion to the program.

DATE: February 25, 2016 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: “Tanzania”
SPEAKER: Professor Walt Anderson, Prescott College
HOST: Doug Iverson
COMMENTS: Northern Tanzania is justly famous for the “Great Migration” of large grazing mammals and the dramas of predation that accompany the herd movements. It is equally famous for its gorgeous, easily observed birds (from dazzling sunbirds and starlings to incredible eagles and falcons to hornbills, rollers, and ostriches).

Walt shared vicarious experiences of such notable places as the Serengeti, Ngorongoro, Mt. Kilimanjaro, Tarangire, and Lake Manyara. His photos and stories of connections among people, land, and wildlife were, as always, pristine, beautiful and exciting, and enlighten and inspire us al, and may have whet the appetite of some folks to join him on a special safari in July 2016 or January 2017!

Former President Russell Duerksen presented a moving tribute to the outstanding service the Sullivans have provided the Chapter.  Their passing is a great loss to PAS and they will be long remembered and cherished.

Following the program refreshments included a birthday cake in celebration of Walt Anderson’s birthday.

Tanzania Meeting Attendance

DATE: Janury 28, 2016 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: “Explorers of the Amazon
SPEAKER: Micah Riegner, Student Ecologist
HOST: Laura Rhoden
Micah present the history of ornithological exploration in the Amazon with interesting, exciting and humorous antidotes, facts and great photos.  The meeting was well attended with all chairs filled and folks standing in the back of the room.  Another great program from one of our own, who may claim to be a Student of Ecology today, but is obviously destined to be a Doctor of Ecology in the future.

Micah Certificate
In addition to Micah’s presentation, hostest Laura Rhoden introduced several individual with import messages for our attendees.  Brenda Smith informed us that the Prescott City is considering using the remaining 2.1 million dollars from the old Open Space initiative strictly for roads, and asked for individuals to contact the City by mail and/or email and request they honor the obvious intent of the initial initiative.

Brenda Smiths
Noel Fletcher, Prescott National Forest, Peregrine Falcon Manager, asked folks to report sightings of the nesting pair of  Peregrine Falcons who call Thumb Butte home. Finally, Eric Moore announced that earlier in the afternoon, Jay’s Bird Barn was awarded the Prescott Chamber of Commerce, “Small Business of the Year Award” which will hang nicely beside their 2015 National “Best Store with a Birding Emphasis Award”  received during the October 2015, Wild Bird Expo, in Mexico, Missouri, sponsored by Birding Business Magazine and Gold Crest Distributing.

Following the meeting many stayed to enjoy refreshments and birding chatter.  All in all a great evening for PAS and our loyal members and friends.

DATE: December 3, 2015 (1st Thursday)
TIME: 5:00 PM, 6:00 PM, 7:00 PM;
PROGRAM: “2015 Potluck and Awards Dinner
MASTER OF CEREMONY: Professor Carl Tomoff, Founding President
HOST: Russ Chappell
Our annual Potluck and Volunteer Recognition event was well attended and filled with great socializing, tasty food and holiday cheer.

Food was setup from 5:00 PM to 6:00 PM, with dining beginning at 6:00 PM. Shortly after 7:00 PM the volunteer recognition portion of the evening was called to order starting with remarks from our President, Sue Drown who commented on the awards program, the outstanding support we have had during the past year and warm sincere holiday message to all.

Sue was followed by Delores Manburg who announced the winning bidders on the Silent Auction and then Professor Carl Tomoff was introduced and as always, he brought his passion for PAS and nature and love of people to the evening.  As our Founding President, Professor Tomoff has an in-depth understanding of where PAS came from, where it is today and where it should go in the future.  His connection with the membership was demonstrated as he took time, prior to the awards program, to visit each table and greet everyone and wish them a great holiday season.

There were five awards present.  Starting the evening was a PAS Certificate of Appreciation presented to our own “little ball of enthusiasm,” Pam Hanover.  She received her award for her service in membership, outreach events and her function as the official PAS photographer.  There could not have been a better person to start the awards with… Pam’s constant smile, cheer, and outgoing personality set a pattern for the evening, and brought smiles to everyone’s faces.

Our next award, a PAS Certificate of Appreciation, was awarded to Stephen Bruno a recent member and professional photographer who presented numerous free workshops and field training programs for our membership in the past year.  Stephen was unable to attend and PAS President Sue Drown accepted his award and will see it is delivered to him.

There were three National Audubon awards; the Presidential Recognition award recognizing 20 years of support that PAS has received from Ann Harrington at the Little Thumb Butte Bed & Breakfast. Ann was not able to attend and her award was received by Former Presidents Russell Duerksen and Karen O’Neil.  Russell will officially present the award on December 21st following the Chino Valley Christmas Bird Count at the annual dinner at Ann’s B&B.

The NAS Meritorious Service Award was presented to Donn and Carol Rawlings, who were unable to attend, and Rebecca Davis accepted the award on their behalf, and presented an inspirational history of the outstanding service proved by the Rawlings.

The final presentation of the evening was the NAS Meritorious Service Award recognizing Albert and Eunice Lovejoy.  Both Professor Tomoff and Rebecca Davis presented fond memories of the years of service provided by Albert and Eunice.  It was the perfect ending to a wonderful evening when 92 year old Eunice came forward to receive the award with charming and gracious and her incredible sense of humor!

Professor Tomoff closed the proceedings by thanking folks for attending and wishing all a happy holiday and then… the evening was over… accept for the clean-up!

A final note of appreciation. A special thanks to our two hospitality ladies, Susan Anderson and Mary Jane Cisneros.  Starting at 3:30 PM they worked diligently throughout the evening, and their preparation, organization and devotion to making the evening a very special event was outstanding!  THANK YOU LADIES!

DATE: October 22, 2015 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: Recent Seasonal Distribution and Status Changes of Arizona Birds
SPEAKER: Troy Corman, AZGFD Bird Biologist
Sue Drown
Troy Corman, primary author and editor of the Arizona Breeding Bird Atlas (see photo below), was our speaker at the October 22 meeting. He is undoubtedly the most knowledgeable person about the status of Arizona birds, having conducted and coordinated numerous statewide and local avian survey and monitoring projects.

Many of us that bird regularly have noticed that some birds are migrating earlier and new species are showing up in places where we never have seen them before. This was an opportunity to learn from a pro what really is happening. Troy’s presentation highlighted the steady (and sometimes rapid) changes in the distribution and seasonal status of Arizona birds during the past decade or so. Topics included not only recent range shifts of certain species of birds, but shifts in timing of migration, timing of nesting, and species which now winter regularly that historically were not found or rarely detected during the winter in the state. Seasonal abundance of species has also changed for many species and some of these will be discussed.

Troy acknowledged that bird populations are in constant flux which is often linked to the changing environment and other factors. Some of these other factors likely are human manipulated lands, wild fires, and introduction of exotic plants. Even an increase of one bird species may lead to the local decrease of another such as Cooper’s Hawk and Inca Dove in the Tucson area.

Raised in rural south-central Pennsylvania, Troy Corman moved to Arizona in 1980 to pursue higher education and explore the natural wonders of the Southwest. During the mid- and late 1980s he conducted avian and herpetological inventories on the upper San Pedro River for the Bureau of Land Management. This unique area would later become the well-known San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area. He has worked for the Non-game Branch of the Arizona Game and Fish Department since 1990, primarily conducting bird surveys for species of concern, and currently coordinates many long-term, statewide bird monitoring projects with various federal, state and private entities.

With a keen interest in the natural history and distribution of birds, Troy coordinated the Arizona Breeding Bird Atlas project (1993-2000) from its inception. As the primary author and editor of the Atlas, he coordinated its publication by the University of New Mexico Press (2005). Following the Atlas, Troy worked with a strong core group to establish the Arizona Field Ornithologists (AZFO), for which he was the founding President for eight years. This progressive state organization was the first to establish the concept of field expeditions, where most planned outings are to little known areas where knowledge of the seasonal status and distribution of birds is poor or lacking. AZFO also has begun using the talents of its members to conduct much needed avian surveys.

Troy’s presentation was a “hit” just like his “Arizona Breeding Bird Atlas” and President Sue Drown presented him a PAS Certificate of Appreciation after he fielded dozens of question from the many in attendance. Photos courtesy of our PAS Photographer, Pam Hanover.


PAS Oct 2015 mtg Troy Corman - 02


DATE: September 24, 2015 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: “Saving a River is Hard Work!”
SPEAKER: Doug Von Gausig, Executive Director, Verde River Institute; Mayor, Clarkdale, Arizona
Freddie Cisneros
COMMENTS: Doug described his presentation as ”A presentation and discussion of the efforts to conserve the Verde River. Several organizations are working on the conservation of the Verde, some concentrate on policies that affect its health, some produce world-class events centered on the River, some are removing invasives, and some are working to secure the scientific background needed and educate the public. The Verde is much loved and highly threatened, and millions of dollars and thousands of man-hours are being spent to make sure it continues to flow. Doug will let you know what’s being done and how it’s succeeding!

BIOGRAPHY: A third-generation native Arizonan, Doug is currently Mayor of the Town of Clarkdale, Arizona. He graduated from Arizona State University with a B.S. in Biology in 1970 and then joined the U.S. Air Force, serving 6 years as a pilot.

He has served on the Boards of the Yavapai County Water Advisory Committee, the Northern Arizona Municipal Water Users Association, the Verde River Basin Partnership, and other water-oriented committees, and is the immediate past President of the League of Arizona Cities and Towns. He also serves as a Vice-Chair of Arizona Forward and is a member of the Arizona State Committee in Trails (ASCOT).

Doug graduated as a fellow of the Flinn-Brown Civic Leadership Academy in the fall of 2011.

Doug is also the Executive Director of the Verde River Institute, which strives to promote policy solutions for Verde River issues. He spends much of his time on water resource issues and on conservation of the Verde River.

Doug is a professional photographer and sound recordist, providing photography and natural sound recordings to museums, films, reference libraries, conservation organizations and state and national parks.

His consulting company, Riparian Systems Consulting, concentrates on river, water resource and ecosystem services issues in Arizona.

Doug was elected to his third 4-year term as Mayor of Clarkdale in March of 2012.P1070499   P1070563   P1070496

Doug’s presentation was a positive message demonstrating just how much “good” is being done to protect the Verde.  Doug received a PAS Certificate of Appreciation from Board Member and host, Freddie Cisneros following numerous questions from the audience.

DATE: May 28, 2015 (4th Thursday, last meeting of the season)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: “Wildlife Adaptations”
SPEAKER: Zen Mocarski, Arizona Game and Fish Department
Kathy Malm
Zen presented an exciting, entertaining and numerous program explaining  the many ways animals have adapted to life in the desert for survival, many that were quite unique and interesting, as he focused on animals in Arizona and especially those in the Prescott area.  All agreed this speaker must return for another program in the future!  Outstanding program!  MEETING PHOTOS

DATE: April 16, 2015 (3rd Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: “Ecology of Amazonian Mixed-species Bird Flocks“
SPEAKER: Micah Riegner
HOST: Doug Iverson
Micah once again dazzled the group with his knowledge, bird calls and beautiful photos as he explained the ecology of understory feeding flocks, the birds that compose such flocks, and the birds that follow army ants.  He will talked about a biological expedition he is planning for this coming summer on the Rio Aripuana in Brazil.  Following the presentation numerous individuals stayed to view his wide selection of paintings and presentation related items.

DATE: March 26, 2015 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: “Diversity and Behavior of Herons Around the World
SPEAKER: Professor Mark Riegner, Ph.D., Environmental Studies Program, Prescott College
HOST: Doug Iverson
COMMENTS: Mark Riegner has long been fascinated by Herons, Egrets, and Bitterns, and conducted his graduate research on this family of birds. He also is the author of Long-legged Wading Birds of the North American Wetlands (Stackpole Books; 1993) and has traveled extensively to observe herons in the wild.

During his presentation he shared scientific knowledge and understanding of herons, including their ecology, behavior, and conservation.  His program will included beautiful photos and was certainly of interest to our local birders who were thrilled.

There were also four of the five winners of the 2015 Northern Arizona Regional Science/Engineering Fair present, along with their families and project displays.  They were recognized at the beginning of the meeting by Host Doug Iverson, and following Professor Riegner’s program there was a large group of interested folks showing the winners respect and asking questions.

DATE: February 26, 2015 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: Saving the Great American West: The Story of George Bird Grinnell
SPEAKER: Hugh Grinnell
HOST: Laura Rhoden
COMMENTS:  We were thrilled to offer a special Arizona Humanities presentation, “Saving the Great American West: the Story of George Bird Grinnell“.

As a naturalist, and founding father of the National Audubon Society in 1905, Bird Grinnell traveled with the likes of General Custer and Theodore Roosevelt, and he spoke on behalf of western wild lands and wildlife.

The great West that George Bird Grinnell first encountered in 1870 as a 21-year-old man was shortly to disappear before his eyes. Nobody was quicker to sense the desecration or was more eloquent in crusading against the poachers, the hide-hunters, and the disengaged U.S. Congress than George Bird Grinnell, the “Father of American Conservation.”

Grinnell founded the first Audubon Society, co-founded the Boone and Crockett Club with Teddy Roosevelt, and led the effort to establish Glacier National Park.

You will travel back in time to the 19th century, listening to Grinnell’s own words as taken from his field journals, memoirs, personal correspondence, and newspaper editorials. Additionally, audiences will enjoy dozens of 19th-century photographs, which visually capture Grinnell’s many expeditions and discoveries.

AZ Humanities speaker Hugh Grinnell (yes, a relative) impersonated his cousin in period costume, bringing the man and the times to life.

Over 80 attendees were entertained and thrilled by Hugh’s presentation which was impeccable, informative and inspirational.

If you missed this performance, Hugh will be presenting the program at the Prescott Downtown Library, March 5th at 6:30 PM.

DATE: January 22, 2015 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: From the Arctic Circle to the Arctic Ocean
SPEAKER: Roy H. Smith
HOST: Suzette Russi, Conservation Chair
A National Geographic supported expedition

A 400 mile, 40 day winter journey – supported by National Geographic – pulling their sleds over the Brooks Range Mountains, from the Arctic Circle to Umiat near the Arctic Ocean, one of the most remote wilderness regions on the North American Continent, finishing by raft to the Arctic Ocean.

At 70 degrees below three members of the expedition are disabled by frostbite. The expedition medic decides to leave. His prognosis: “No one will make it alive.”

The expedition skied on frozen rivers and deep snow through the northern Taiga forest onto the exposed Arctic Tundra.

A journey of exacting physical hardships where logan bread (A delicious quick bread is named after Mount Logan in the Yukon. It is dense and chock-full of nutrients, perfect for hiking or camping.) had to be sawed into slices!

SUMMARY:  Roy entertained the over 100 in attendance with stories of hardship, danger, challenge and ultimate success in completing a voyage never before attempted.

His humor, human insight and enthusiasm provided an evening of entertainment, encouragement and motivation that was felt by all.

Roy has volunteered to present another program for the 2015-2016 season on an expedition in South America which will again be a thrilling, informative and exciting program.

DATE: October 23, 2014 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: “Fires, Floods and Birds: Dynamics of a Desert Riparian Bird Community on the Bill Williams River of Arizona”
SPEAKER: Dr. Kathleen Blair
FEATURING: Photos by John West

HOST: DeeDee DeLorenzo
COMMENTS FROM DR. BLAIR: Since 1998 I have maintained several long-term monitoring transects on the Bill Williams River NWR in a diversity of habitats, across all seasons, and most taxonomic groups – come floods, fires, droughts ( and apparently hurricanes). This long-term data base is helping track how the terrestrial communities of these habitats, and the species within them, particularly birds, respond to periodic disturbance and succession.

DR. BLAIR’S BIO:  Born and raised in the Kansas Flinthills I received my BS in Wildlife and Fisheries Conservation from Kansas State University; MS in Zoology, Oklahoma State University; and my Ph.D. from Oklahoma State University which focused on the community ecology of montaine Neotropical small mammals in Parque Nacional do Caparao , Brasil. Assistant Professor of Biology at Central Missouri State University and Wildlife Biology at West Texas A&M University. I have been the Ecologist for the U.S.Fish and Wildlife Service on the Bill Williams River NWR ( and now the Lake Havasu NWR Complex) since 1998.


DATE: September 25, 2014 (4th Thursday)
TIME: 7:00 PM
PROGRAM: Why DIDN’T the Pronghorn Cross the Road?
SPEAKER: Scott Sprague, Senior Research Biologist, Wildlife Contracts Branch, AZG&FD
HOST: Sue Drown
ABOUT THE PROGRAM: Pronghorn, along with just about every wildlife species we have here in Arizona, face daunting challenges from the transportation infrastructure that blankets our state.  On the surface it would seem that building out our highways would only compound existing problems of mortality, habitat loss, and fragmentation; but with closer consideration, it becomes evident that road upgrades present opportunities for preserving and even restoring the health of our ecosystems.

Partnerships among various governmental agencies, conservation groups, universities, and commercial entities have been able to capitalize on these opportunities through research and implementation of long-term wildlife connectivity measures such as underpasses and overpasses as well as shorter-term measures such as wildlife crosswalks and fence modifications.

This talk will discuss the basic challenges, research approaches, and mitigation measures that have put Arizona at the forefront of Road Ecology.

ABOUT OUR SPEAKER: According to the Arizona Game and Fish Department (AGFD) employee directory, Scott Sprague is a Wildlife Specialist III. The AGFD Wildlife Contracts Branch roster refers to him as a Senior Project Manager. However he prefers to describe himself as a research biologist/road ecologist.

Scott got his bachelor’s degree from Colgate University in central New York. It’s sometimes thought of as a “safety school” for Cornell applicants, but it was just recognized as the #1 “Most Beautiful Campus” in the country by the Princeton Review.

Anyhow, Scott has been working for AGFD since 2002 when he was hired as a technician on the southwestern willow flycatcher project. He worked on various AGFD research projects before joining the Highways and Wildlife Connectivity group in 2006. Since then he has been a part of numerous projects across the state that focus on the relationships between roads and elk, deer, bighorn sheep, and pronghorn. In 2010,

Scott also managed to get his master’s degree from NAU, where he studied the effects of roads on genetic interchange among the pronghorn populations of northern Arizona.

While office tasks now represent the bulk of his work load, he still manages to get into the field every so often.  Sometimes that means volunteering on things like yellow-billed cuckoo, elegant trogon, or northern Mexican gartersnake surveys.

Date: May 22, 2014 (4th Thursday, last meeting of the season)
Time: 7:00 PM
Program: The Dragonfly Whisperer
Speaker: Professor James Walker
Host: Rich Schooler
Dr. Walker’s Website


AFTER MEETING REPORT:  Professor James Walker and his wife Betsy brought a new level of entertainment, instruction and understanding of the world of Dragonflies!  With beautiful photo, exciting videos and a genuine passion for dragonflies, Professor Walker guided us through the one year life of dragonflies, while teasing us with his soon to be produced movie, ” The Happy Faced Dragonfly!”  We encourage you to visit Professor Walkers Blog website listed above to follow his adventures.

Dragonfly Whisperer Field Trip, May 23, 2014

The morning after a very entertaining and educational program about dragonflies and damselflies, our speaker and his wife, Jim and Betsy Walker, joined nine of us for a field trip at Watson Lake & Woods.

We walked along the west side of the lake, working our way to the wildlife pond in Watson Woods. The habitat at the southwest corner of the lake and at the pond was very promising, but cool weather and wind conspired against us, and we didn’t see any dragonflies or damselflies.

We did see a Woodhouse’s Toad along the lakeshore and some deer in the woods, as well as some butterflies and beetles.

As for birds, a few of our group were lucky enough to see a Merlin. We spotted two Anna’s Hummingbird nests, and in addition to the usual avian residents of the lake and woods, we saw Wilson’s Warbler, Blue Grosbeak, and Bullock’s Oriole.  We watched two American Kestrels harrassing a Red-tailed Hawk, and a Mourning Dove ferrying nesting material to its nest.

In all, despite not having the chance to watch our guests charm a dragonfly or two, we had a great morning.

To follow Jim & Betsy’s dragonfly adventures, please see:


Date: April 17, 2014 (NOTE CHANGE: 3rd Thursday)
Time: 7:00 PM
Program: BRAZIL REVISITED: Birding Adventures in the Southern Amazon
Speaker(s): Micah Riegner
Host: Doug Iverson

Date: March 27, 2014 (4th Thursday)
Time: 7:00 PM
Program: Midway Atoll: Visions of Hope and Wisdom
Speaker: Sharon K. Schafer, Artist (Website)
Host: DeeDee DeLorenzo
Biography: Sharon K. Schafer has a varied background ranging from painter and photographer, to wildlife biologist and river guide. Now as a full-time artist, she combines two loves – nature and art.

Her excellence as a wildlife painter has been recognized by both the international Society of Animal Artists and Artists for Conservation. Upon accepting their invitation for membership she joined the ranks of the best wildlife painters working today. Her wildlife paintings are sought after by collectors and displayed in museums across the country.

Throughout the world, Schafer shares her artistic talent and passion for the wild-lands by teaching art and nature-related classes and lecturing extensively, and tirelessly, about the stunning beauty and amazing diversity of life on our planet.

She earned her degree in Wildlife Management at Humboldt State University, in northern California. 
Subsequently, she worked as a field wildlife biologist for the Soil Conservation Service, Pacific Gas and Electric, and the Bureau of Land Management.

In an effort to combine her interest in art and science, Schafer founded Skydance Studio in 1998. With her studio, she has dedicated herself to the creation of images that promote a deeper understanding and appreciation of the beauty and diversity of the natural world.

Using her skills as both an artist and biologist, she has developed natural-resource-related educational exhibits and images for many organizations including the U.S. National Park Service, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, U.S. Forest Service, and the Bureau of Land Management.

Her sense of adventure and unflagging curiosity about the natural world has led her to every continent and to the very ends of the earth, where she has worked extensively as an artist, photographer, and videographer in the Arctic, Antarctic, and the Sub-Antarctic Islands.

(Comments from Sharon)

Midway Atoll: Visions of Hope and Wisdom 

I was there in March of 2013 and saw 1.5 million nesting Laysan Albatross on 1.5 square miles of island.

Though Midway is an unconsolidated US territory it is now run by the USFWS as a refuge.

The program deals with the changes Midway has faced in its history and its impact on the wildlife.

Despite its value to Japanese egg and feather collectors, the Trans Pacific Cable Company, the Pan Am trans-Pacific flights, the US Navel Station and its bombing during the Battle of Midway the atoll remains a critical nesting area for pelagic birds, home for Green Sea Turtle and endangered Monk seals.

Now the islands are the gateway to Papahanumokuakea National Marine Monument, the Midway Atoll National Wildlife Refuge, the Battle of Midway National Memorial, and was just recently designated a UNESCO world heritage site.

I also discuss the management strategies of the USFWS and their amazing successes.

After Meeting Report:  Sharon’s in-depth history of Midway Atoll and the various species that call it home was riveting and educational.  Her combination of factual dialog, photos and moving videos painted an image that will long last in the minds of the 65 plus who attended her presentation.

February 27, 2014 (4th Thursday)
7:00 PM
Program: Heritage Park Zoological Sanctuary – LIVE Raptors”
Speakers: Kim McCall, Molly Nelson and Darla Boggs
Host: Sue Drown

January 23, 2014 (4th Thursday)
Time: 7:00 PM
Program: Javelina Natural History and Management
Speakers: Scott Poppenberger, Wildlife Manager, Arizona Game & Fish Department
Host: Laura Rhoden
After Meeting Report:  Scott Poppenberger once again delivered!  His folksy, professional and fact filled presentation kept the crowd of 145 attendees totally focused!  He discussed Javelina from all aspects of their history and lives, as well as their interaction with humans.

In addition to a tremendous amount of information regarding these animals, Scott repeatedly emphasized the importance of accepting these critters as part of the habitat and enjoy them… BUT DO NOT FEED THEM!

Feeding them is harmful not only to the Javelina, but creates a dependency and loss of their basic survival instincts, while creating a physical danger to humans and pets, especially children.

Scott remained long after his presentation to answer questions and we look forward to having him bring another one of his great presentations to PAS in the future.

Click on the following link to view and/or download a list of Javelina Resistant Plants:

December 5, 2013 (1st Thursday)
Program: “Potluck & Awards Ceremony“

  • Food Setup: 5:00 PM – 6:00 PM
  • Dining: 6:00 PM – 7:00 PM
  • Awards Ceremony: 7:00 PM – 8:00 PM
  • Cleanup: 8:15 PM – Finish

Master of Ceremony: Professor Carl Tomoff
Host: Russ Chappell
Special Note: Pre-Holiday Clearance Sale

October 24, 2013 (4th Thursday)
Time: 7:00 PM
Program: Through the Valley Where Man was Born” 
Speaker: Roy Smith
Host: Doug IversonSeptember 26, 2013 (4th Thursday)
Time: 7:00 PM
Program: Viva La Verde Click Here for Trailer
Speaker: Dr. Gary Beverly
Host: Suzette Russi

May 23, 2013 (4th Thursday, last meeting of the season)
Time: 7:00 PM
Speaker: Dena Greenwood, Board Member, Northern Arizona Audubon Society
Host: Kathy Malm

April 18, 2013 (3rd Thursday)
Time: 7:00 PM
Sara Luna and Tice Supplee
Suzette Russi

March 28, 2013 (4th Thursday)
Time: 7:00 PM
Speakers: Fred and Betsy Arndt
Host: Doug Iverson

February 28, 2013 (4th Thursday)
Time: 7:00 PM
Speaker: Dan Campbell
Host: Suzette Russi

January 24, 2013 (4th Thursday)
Time: 7:00 PM
Speaker: Micah Riegner
Host: Laura Rhoden

December 6, 2012 (1st Thursday)
5:30 – 9:00 PM
5:00 PM – Food Setup
6:00 PM – Dining
7:00 PM – Volunteer Recognition Awards

Master of Ceremony: Founding President, Dr. Carl Tomoff
Hosted by Russ Chappell

October 25, 2012
7:00 PM
“Balanced Raptor Management on the
Bradshaw RD of the Prescott NF”

Presented by
Noel Fletcher, Wildlife Biologist, PNF
Hosted by Betsy Arndt

September 27, 2012
7:00 PM


Presented by Wayne Fischer, Animal Care Manager, HPZS
Numerous live reptiles for hands-on enjoyment… even the Caiman!
Hosted by Sue Drown

May 24, 2012
7:00 PM

Presented by Eric Moore
A slide show highlighting Eric and his wife’s three week birding adventure to Brazil.
Hosted by Betsy Arndt

April 26, 2012
7:00 PM

Presented by Russ Smith, Wildlife Rescue Specialist
10 rescued animals, including  cute baby skunk and porcupine babies, that made everyone go ooooooh!
Hosted by Cathy Palm-Gessner

March 22, 2012
7:00 PM

Presented by Tony Krysik, Ph.D.
An in-depth lecture on the challenges facing the Verde River and it’s wildlife.
Hosted by Bob Gessner

February 23, 2012
7:00 PM

Presented by David MacKay, Owner of Solipaso, a Nature Retreat in Alamos, Mexico.
David returned to his Prescott roots with an inspiration view into the Mexican paradise he now calls home.
Hosted by Cathy Palm-Gessner

January 26, 2012
5:00 PM – 9:00 PM

Prescott College Professor Carl Tomoff officiated the Awards Ceremony.
Great food, pleasant socializing and recognition of valuable volunteers.
Hosted by Cathy Palm-Gessner

December 1, 2011

Event cancelled due to heavy snow storm.

October 27, 2011
7:00 PM

Presented by Russell S. Duerksen, Past PAS President
An exciting PowerPoint program focusing on identifying the numerous species of sparrows.
Hosted by Doug Iverson

September 29, 2011
7:00 PM

Presented by Sarah Porter, Executive Director, Arizona Audubon Society
The perfect beginning to a new season, Sarah left us with a long list of ideas on growing PAS better and faster.
Hosted by Russell S. Duerksen