• October Program: Crossing the Isthmus: Overland Spring Migration of Common Loons in Florida

    Our speaker this month, October 19th, is Dr. Andrew Kratter, Ornithology Division, Florida Museum of Natural History, of Gainesville. Common Loons are an iconic bird in much of North America. In their stunning breeding plumage, they breed across the northern US and across Canada.

    CommonLoonwithChick McHenry

    photo courtesty of member William McHenry

    Their wild yodelling calls are a hallmark of mist shrouded northern lakes, and they are the national bird of Canada, appearing of their $1 coins (better known as "Loonies"). In their drabber winter plumage, they undertake a great migration to winter on the Pacific, Atlantic, and Gulf of Mexico coasts. They are a well known migrant at coastal observation points. So why does Dr. Kratter pursue his studies of Common Loons in Gainesville, smack-dab in the middle of Florida, far from either coast and a long way from mist-shrouded northern lakes? In the mid-1990s it was discovered that a few Common Loons could be seen flying over Gainesville in late March and early February. Dr. Kratter thought it would be fun to document this migration, and discovered that this migration is much more extensive than he could ever had imagined and likely involves a large percentage of the population wintering in peninsular Florida. He will give details of this discovery and explain the pattern, extent, and timing of this unlikely migration route.

    For details on this program and other activities including workshops and field trips, check our calendar of events on this site.

  • Reduce Window Strikes With These Homemade Decorations


    With fall migration underway, window strikes are a very real hazard for birds.

    We lose up to a billion birds a year in the U.S. due to window collisions.

    Here is a do-it-yourself project for window decorations that you can do or even engage the kids in making.

    DIY Window Project

  • Have you seen a banded Roseate Spoonbill?


    Audubon of Florida scientists began banding Roseate Spoonbills in 2003. Data collected from reported sightings of banded birds will help us better understand their movements. We can use this data to help protect and improve their habitat.

    Everything you need to know about the type of bands used and how to report a banded Roseate Spoonbill can be found here:

    Report a banded Spoonbill