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Audubon Center of the North Woods Fall/Winter 2013 Volume 39, Issue 2 A proud leader in environmental education and renewable energy In This Issue An Optimist’s View 1 Thinking it Through 1 History of Bird Conservation 2 Meet Our New Interns 3 Wish Lists 4 Meet Our New Staff 5 Volunteer Spotlight 5 Spotlight on Schools 6 Give to the Max 7 Land Management at the Center 7 Calendar of Events 8 Upcoming Programs 9 Alumni News 10 Volunteer Opportunities 10 Thank You 11 Upcoming Events See our website for details Dinner at the Lake October 12, 2013 H-Owl-oween at the Center October 30, 2013 Beaver Moon Sunday Brunches Nov. 10, 17 & 24, 2013 Winter Family Escape Dec. 27-30, 2013 New Year’s Eve at the Lake December 31, 2013 Dinner at the Lake January 18, 2014 Dinner at the Lake February 15, 2014 Maple Syrup Day March 29, 2014 Food & Farms Weekend April 4-6, 2014 Women’s Wellness & Adventure Weekend, May 2-4, 2014 An Optimist’s View Thinking it Through by Bryan Wood, Co-Director by Melonie Shipman, Co-Director I am aware as anyone else of the monumental environmental problems that we face today. The unprecedented pressures we are exerting on our planet are wide-ranging and complex. It can be easy to depress yourself as you read, hear and watch stories of what is happening to our natural systems. And yet, I am never at a loss for finding inspiration in others who care about the environment and who work to protect, preserve and restore it. Everywhere I look, I see individuals in communities, schools, businesses and governments that are making positive strides and impacts for the environment. There are many things in life that are challenging, but finding others who are committed to making the world a better place is not one of them. In July, we had the great joy of returning to my home in Homer, Alaska. In the moments when the beauty and the uniqueness leave you awed, you see little elements that reflect that Alaska sometimes has thought through the relationship to the future of the natural environment (and some times, not, another topic for another day). With great joy, my wife Kat and I, along with our two-year old daughter Maya, recently welcomed our son Henry Camden Wood into the world. And while I do not know what the world will look like when Henry is my age, I am nonetheless grateful for the efforts off others before me who have made possible the enjoyment of natural places that our family will experience together in the coming years. While one can focus on the fact that we have lost large tracts of land across our country to private interests and natural resource exploitation, I instead think it is truly amazing the foresight that committed individuals at every level in our society had to set aside places we can all enjoy and collectively call our own. There are so many opportunities for us to enjoy nature; at our city, county, state and national parks, forests and wildlife areas/refuges, and bureau off land management areas. Added all up, these — continued on page 4 — Along the Russian and Kenai Rivers, sometimes seen in photos as “combat fishing” for salmon, there are fishing line recycling bboxes at every access point. While working for Anoka County Parks here in Minnesota I tried to have the same thing established. The Parks were amenable to the idea. The challenge was that the recycling containers would have to be bbuilt by someone, someone would need to be in charge of collecting the line from the boxes, and the line would need to be sent off for recycling (seems like this would make a great scout project!). While in Alaska, the importance of this simple act was brought home as I read about two recently rehabilitated bald eagles in Minnesota who were found dead a few weeks later – entangled in fishing line. Even the bits of line snipped off when retying can ultimately be a hazard to wild life. Birds collect these and weave nests. Unique looking? Yes. Warm and secure for eggs and chicks? No. Please help by simply thinking to pick up yours or anyone else’s line and discarding it properly...until we can get those fishing line recycling boxes established in Minnesota. Thank you. I am exceedingly proud of our little town of Homer, Alaska (population 5085) in being jjust the second U.S. community to ban plastic grocery bags. In October, practicing a walking circle talk to discuss troublesome issues, I — continued on page 8 —

Fall 2013 Newsletter "News from the North Woods"

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