Tuesday, June 28, 2016

The Ultimate Guide to Birdwatching

 A friend of Stillwater sent us this link with resources from identifying birds to starting the hobby with your family: The Ultimate Guide to Birdwatching.
We thought you'd enjoy it!

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Another Successful Spring Wings Festival

Spring Wings was a great success yet again! From the Insect Petting Zoo to the fascinating birds viewed on tours, everyone seemed to really enjoy this year's festival! We'd like to thank each and every one of you for your support in making this annual event a reality. Stay tuned for future events and the 2017 Spring Wings Festival!

In the meantime...come and visit the Stillwater National Wildlife Refuge this summer. Witness the aquatic changes as well as the variety of wildlife in the area as they take place with each passing month. For more information, visit http://www.fws.gov/refuge/stillwater/.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

See What the Churchill County Museum Has in Store!

Don't miss out on the wonderful photographic display by photographer Greg Nelson at the Churchill County Museum!

Churchill County Museum

 Dodge Fitz Exhibit Gallery presents:

 Birds, Birds, and More Birds

This exhibition features the expert nature photography of local resident and Stillwater NWR Volunteer Greg Nelson. Come see his amazing detailed photos of the birds of Lahontan Valley.

Click on the following link for additional information: Churchill County Museum Website.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Incredible Opportunity for Wader Watchers!

We recently learned of an incredible opportunity for birders who are interested in traveling and working abroad. Sorry for the short notice! Read on...

The large wader stopover in Khairusova-Belogolovaya estuary on the Western coast of Kamchatka peninsula is not very famous and scientists have started investigate this area only several years ago. The last expedition in 2015, the estuary was found to host 31 wader species. During the peak of migration, in the end of July, we counted about 26 000 waders.
Most numerous in this area are Great Knots (up to 23 000), Bar-tailed and Black-tailed Godwits, Red-necked Stints and Dunlins. Also we often recorded there rare species – Spoon-billed Sandpipers and Far-Eastern Curlews.

From middle of June till the middle of August 2016 we are planning to continue our field work in this area and looking for volunteers. We are planning the following activities:
1)    Wader counts
2)    Reading individual flag codes on Great Knots and Godwits
3)    Maybe ringing waders and taking benthos samples.

We are looking for people with experience with wader counts and reading leg flags. The volunteers, preferably bringing their own scopes, can participate the whole field period or for the part of it. Main activities – wader counts and reading leg flags. Large part of Great Knots and some Godwits have  individual leg flags, mostly from Australia.

Travelling via Petropavlovsk to Ust-Khairusovo by plane. In the study area we live in field tent camp. Camp is protected with electric fence from bears. Main vehicle is motor boat. It is necessary to have all field equipment – rubber boots, rain jackets and pants, warm clothes etc.

Unfortunately our expedition this year  is not able to pay  for expedition costs.

The deadline of the applications is 20 March 2016.

Are you interested, or do you have questions, please contact Dmitry Dorofeev dmitrdorofeev@gmail.com

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Canvasback Tule Duck Shirts Available!

Check out our custom artwork depicting the historic Canvasback duck decoy on this 100% cotton, natural color, pre-shrunk shirt! 
Available in sizes Sm - XXL. Shirts can be purchased on this site or at www.springwings.org through PayPal. 

Cost is just $20, with free shipping!

A brief history of the Tule duck decoy:
"The Canvasback duck decoy made from tules is an icon of the Lahontan Valley wetlands in Nevada. These decoys date back over 3000 years to the time of the early Paiute people who thrived in the Stillwater marsh. They developed a method of constructing lifelike duck decoys from tightly woven marsh plants, painted them with mineral dyes and sometimes wrapped feathers on the form.  Small groups of these were floated in the marsh ponds to 'decoy' other waterfowl into landing within range of the hunters' arrow. A well-preserved group of these decoys was discovered in a cave near Lovelock, NV in the 1920's, and are on display at the Smithsonian Institution.  Today, a handful of Paiute tribal members continue to create these decoys as fine art for sale, using traditional methods passed down through the generations."

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Great new link for beginners to bird watching

We just added a new site under Birder Links tab:http://bebusinessed.com/bird-watching/. Thanks for the share from a fellow birder and her family!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Lahontan Valley Wildlife and Bird Sightings

Lahontan Valley Wildlife and Bird Update July 1, 2016:

Carson Lake and Pasture: dry, very little water near caretaker cabin. Expect delivery this Fall.

Tribal Wetlands off NV116 at Agency Rd: all cells are full, lots of waders, waterfowl, raptors in trees. Watch for cattle, open/closed gates on narrow levees.

Stillwater NWR: water deliveries continue through sanctuary into Goose Lake, South Nutgrass hunt units until early Fall.

The refuge sanctuary along the Foxtail Lake driving tour route is holding the most visible bird numbers. Enter the route across from the Stillwater Pt. parking area, about 1/2 mile from the refuge information kiosk. 

The one-way road is about 6.5 miles long, and exits onto Hunter Road, which is the main north/south refuge public access road.  

Mid-way along the tour route is a covered pavilion, accessible tables, restroom, boardwalk, and viewing platforms. A wildlife viewing blind is located on the West shore of the first pond,  about 1/4 mile west of the pavilion; parking is next to the road, and an easy 200yd path leads to the blind.

Other viewing as you drive east on Division Rd, view ponds to south; small pond at Tule Trail parking area off Hunter Road. 

June 2016 sightings on the refuge included the following:
(8am -11am; 90F air temp, SW breeze, clear)  

Full refuge bird survey available on the Stillwater NWR website, Birders Corner.

Ducks - Pintail, Mallard, Teal
Ruddy Duck
Northern Shoveler
American Coot
American White Pelicans
Canada Goose

Common Raven
Loggerhead Shrike
Great Horned Owl
Valley Quail

Yellow-headed Blackbird
Western Meadowlark
American Robin
Swallows - hundreds at pavilion

Black-tailed Jackrabbit
Cottontail rabbit
White-tailed Antelope Ground squirrel

Spiny, Whiptail Lizard
Gopher, Garter snakes

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Bird-watching Tips from the Couch

Someone shared this great article about bird-watching from home. Hope you find it useful!
Click here: Bird Watching from Your Window 

Monday, June 30, 2014

Friends of Stillwater Bylaws

To see our bylaws, click on the following link to access the PDF: Friends of Stillwater NWR Bylaws.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Spring Wings on National Geographic

Spring Wings, our very own Friends of Stillwater Group, the Refuge, and Fallon are featured in this month's National Geographic online magazine. There are some amazing photographs on the site as well as an interesting article.
Check it out by clicking on the following link: Spring Wings Nat Geo Link