Stewardship News | Volume 14, Issue 1 | Winter 2011

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Stewardship News A Publication of Audubon International

Volume 14, Issue 1 • Winter 2011

The Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program turns Ron Dodson


here are benchmarks in everyone’s life where taking the time to reflect on how you arrived at a particular destination helps determine what path you take in the future. As we celebrate the twentieth anniversary of the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program, I find myself thinking about the experiences in my life that have contributed to the creation of Audubon International and our approach to environmental education. Many of our charter members remember the early years of the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program and the controversy over our effort to help golf courses participate in an environmentally responsible approach to golf course maintenance. People have asked why, when most traditional environmentalists condemned golf courses, I chose to develop a program that welcomed them with open arms. Perhaps you need to know first that I discovered the game of golf as a teenager. I joined my high school golf team during my junior year and went on

to play golf during my undergraduate years at college. And while I loved golf, my academic focus was on biology and the natural environment. What a great combination—playing golf, spending time outside, seeing wildlife. It wasn’t until years later that I even began to think about the environmental connection between golf courses and wildlife habitat, much less about how courses were managed and what impact, if any, maintenance practices had on the environment. As many of you remember, back in the late 1950s and early 1960s, golf courses—at least public ones— were not maintained at all like many courses are today. Golf courses then were mowed with the old fashion reel mowers that were pulled behind a tractor. In many places, during the summertime, the fairways would turn brown or die altogether and that was just part of the game. I’ve even commented to other golfers in the past few years that many of the fairways that I now play on are in better shape than many of the greens

2O! that I used to putt on when I was a kid. As a matter of fact, when I first learned how to play golf, the greens were not grass at all, but sand! But the changes in the golf course landscape took place slowly and subtly over the years, and it wasn’t until the mid-1980s that I took a closer look at the nature of golf courses. In 1987, when I was reorganizing the Audubon Society of New York State (ASNY) and looking for new ways to promote conservation and new people to work with, my father suggested that I should develop some sort of a program for golf courses. It seemed to him that most golf courses were comprised of at least a few hundred acres of land and most of them had water, providing habitat for a variety of species. Not only that, but there were a lot of people who played the game and would serve as a perfect audience for an environmental education program. That was actually continued on page 4


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Dear Members and Supporters, To help people help the environment, Audubon International offers a set of basic principles to guide people in their daily decisions and actions. These principles promote more sustainable patterns of land use, sustainable resource management, and environmental stewardship. Take a moment to review them and consider “adopting” them as a guide for your decisions and actions. • We promote resource management practices that have the greatest positive impact on native wildlife species, water, and the ecosystems that sustain life. • We strive to use resources that are most easily renewed. • When resources are difficult or impossible to renew, we will rethink our use of those resources, and strive to reduce or eliminate their use. • We encourage actions that conserve water and enhance water quality. • We encourage activities, practices, and land uses that support ecosystems that maintain biodiversity. • We seek to foster and reward stewardship actions and technology developments that improve the quality of life and the environment. • We consider the geographic and ecological context in which we live and strive to manage resources within the natural limitations and opportunities defined by ecosystems and geographic boundaries. To read our complete Principles of Sustainable Resource Management, visit

46 Rarick Road Selkirk, New York 12158 (518) 767-9051 You can reach our staff via e-mail by typing the person’s first initial, full last name @ Administration

Ronald Dodson, President Kevin Fletcher, PhD, Executive Director Mary Jack, Executive Assistant to the President Paula Realbuto, Executive Assistant for Operations Jessica DesLauriers, Development Manager Audubon Cooperative


Sanctuary Programs

Jennifer Batza, Membership Coordinator Jim Sluiter, Program Manager Joellen Lampman, Director

Kevin Fletcher Executive Director

Audubon Signature Program

Nancy Richardson, Director Linda Snow, Administrative Assistant

In this issue… 1 The Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program turns 20!:

A look back at how it all began. 5

20 Audubon Stewards:

An introduction to twenty Audubon Stewards. 9 From ACSP to Classic— Keppel Land’s Certified Golf Sanctuaries: New benchmarks

in sustainable development set by Keppel Land Limited.

Turn to page nine for an educational fact sheet on welcoming wild turkeys to The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay.

12 Twenty MORE Questions About the ACSP for Golf: Answers to

Education Department

Joshua Conway, Manager of Education and Communications Audubon Green Leaf Eco-Rating Program

Fred Realbuto, Director Sustainable Communities Program

Suzanne Zakowski, Manager

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

many commonly asked questions from Jennifer Batza. 13 Tear-Out Fact Sheet: Welcoming

Wildlife: Wild Turkeys

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First Phase of Grand River Certified by Audubon International

Hilton Head Island Latest Sustainable Communities Member

udubon International has added one more project to the growing list of those certified in the Audubon Signature Program. The Shops at Grand River is only the first phase of a large mixed-use project, but the eco-development principles espoused through the Signature Program are already being applied at this unique outlet mall. The development’s location near the banks of the Cahaba River made adopting standards such as those required through the Audubon Signature Program a necessity, according to Beth Stewart, Executive Director of the Cahaba River Society. “The river comes within 200 feet of where the grading was done in some places for this project,” according to Stewart. Stewart said the work of Audubon International on the projects was visible, particularly when it comes to environmental education throughout the process. “We would love to see this replicated with other major construction projects.”

ilton Head Island recently became the first community in South Carolina to join Audubon International’s Sustainable Communities Program. “The Town of Hilton Head Island is looking to Audubon International’s Sustainable Communities Program to help continue our efforts to place environmental sustainability in the forefront of Town initiatives,” commented Mayor Tom Peeples. By enrolling in the SCP, Hilton Head will join several other municipalities as a public sector member.


Marriott Vacation Club Commits 100% to Audubon Green Leaf


arriott Vacation Club is teaming up with Audubon International to further the “greening” of its resorts in North America and the Caribbean region through the Audubon Green Leaf Eco-Rating Program for Hotels. With 28 resorts currently enrolled, Marriott’s signature timeshare brand expects to have all 43 resorts in the region participating in the program by next year.


Audubon International Celebrates Twenty Years of the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program


he Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ACSP) and ACSP for Golf Courses will be twenty years old in 2011. To help us celebrate, we’re inviting members to send us those five, ten, fifteen, and yes, maybe even twenty year old photographs of the work you’ve done through these programs. Please send us digital images that are at least 4”x 6” and at least 300 dpi. Images may be sent to These photographs will be used throughout the next twelve months in print and on the Internet to help us tell your environmental story and the story of this two-decade old program. We appreciate you participation!

Audubon International Takes Initiative In 2008, Audubon International launched a new strategy to affect change in four specific areas. Each of these Initiatives will provide a focus for our work in the years to come.

Community Engagement, Planning, and Action The 10th Annual New Partners for Smart Growth Conference was held February 3–5, 2011 in Charlotte, NC. Audubon International presented a seminar titled: “Making Alot With A Little: Long-Term Sustainability Strategies for Rural Communities.” For upcoming seminars near you, visit our website. www.SustainableCommunity

Eco-Design and Development Revised Signature Program Training & Webinars Held Throughout 2011: Audubon International staff are available to answer questions about the newly-revised program certification and education criteria for the Audubon Signature Program. The organization will be hosting webinars and presentations throughout 2011 to bring professionals and consultants in the sustainable land development community up to speed with the changes. www. EcoDevelopment

Environmental Stewardship and Management The Hollywood Bowl has achieved designation as a “Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary” through the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ACSP), an Audubon International program. www.EcoManagement

Golf and the Environment Ten years ago, Oregon Public Broadcasting sent a crew out to The Oregon Golf Club in West Linn, OR, to shoot a piece for their popular Oregon Field Guide series. David Phipps, now the Superintendent at Stone Creek Golf Club, reminisces and links to what is one of the best video’s on golf and the environment we have seen on his blog. www.GolfandEnvironment. org



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The Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program turns 2O! Continued from page 1

Ron Dodson walking the property at the Lake Placid Club in Lake Placid, NY.

the seed that grew into the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses. A few years later, I was contacted by McGregor Links Golf Club in upstate New York. The superintendent was concerned about skunks on the golf course and wanted some wildlife advice that would help him solve the problem without using chemicals. This gave me a chance to spend some time on a golf course, not from a golfing point of view, but from the perspective of a golf course superintendent. I asked a lot of questions and we talked about the basic principles of wildlife management. I told the superintendent that these principles applied to all wildlife and that they could be applied on a golf course the same way that they could be applied on a wildlife refuge. During the next several months, I was invited to a number of other golf courses where superintendents were looking for similar advice. Also at this time, a person working for an upstate New York consulting firm happened on an outdoor sporting store in Keene, New York, and asked to use their fax machine. The manager of the store was a board member of ASNY

and happened to notice that the fax had to do with a golf course development project. He struck up a conversation and suggested that the consultant contact me because I was in the process of developing an environmental program for golf course superintendents. He contacted me and asked if I would be interested in visiting the Lake Placid Club which was considering redevelopment and included a golf course. With architect drawings in hand, I walked the property. I remember wondering if the architect had actually been to the site to do the drawings because a couple of proposed greens were in wetlands and one fairway was much too close to a river that was in the state wild, scenic, and recreational river system. I wrote up a report and sent it to my contact with the company. I told them, among other things, that I didn’t see how the proposal would ever make it past the Adirondack Park Agency as it was currently laid out. After some follow-up meetings, the developer decided to move forward with the original proposal, and, as predicted, was eventually forced to abandon the project. During a few of the meetings that I attended in connection to the Lake Placid Club, I also met Jim Snow who was the regional agronomist for the United States Golf Association (USGA), and who is now the National Director of the USGA Green Section. He was intrigued that an environmental organization like ASNY was actually willing to work with golf courses, and while we talked a few times about the concept of a program for golf courses, it never went past the discussion stage. After those preliminary conversations, I received a mailing at my home from

the USGA. It was a typical bulk mailing asking me to become a member. I read through the materials and decided to write to the USGA describing our organization and our interest in working with golf courses, and that the USGA would make a perfect partner in supporting this effort. About a month later, I received a letter from the USGA inviting me to participate in an educational session of the USGA during the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America conference in Orlando. During my presentation, I pointed out that golf courses would remain under attack for their lack of awareness and attention to environmental issues until someone in the golf course industry took the lead. Negative media attention and criticism from environmentalists would continue until golf courses changed their management practices to reflect a greater sensitivity to environmental concerns. I publicly unveiled our interest in working cooperatively with golf courses to increase their awareness of environmental issues and to help educate them in ways that would benefit both their golf course and the environment. Jim Snow had now been promoted to the National Director of the USGA Green Section and after my presentation at the GCSAA conference, we talked again. He thought the USGA might be interested in supporting the program for golf courses. We had more meetings, and finally Jim approached the USGA Executive Committee and asked them for a grant of $35,000 to promote an environmental program for golf courses. The grant would underwrite my time to travel across the country and speak at various functions,


including numerous regional USGA conferences. At first, the response from the Executive Committee was not very favorable. They were concerned about the USGA getting too involved in environmental issues and forming too close an alliance with an environmental group. However, one member of the Executive Committee strongly supported not only what we were trying to do, but encouraged the USGA to work with ASNY. This Executive Committee member was the same vice president of the company that proposed the redevelopment of the Lake Placid Club! He knew first hand that I had given them sound advice even though they chose not to take it. With his support, the funding was approved. Our goal that first year was to see if we could get 100 golf courses to join the program. After a lot of miles and a lot of meetings, we ended 1990 with 150 courses enrolled in the program. Having met our goal, Jim asked me what I thought we needed to keep the program going and it was clear that what I needed most were people to run the program while I was in the field promoting it. I asked the USGA to contribute $100,000 and become a sponsor of the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses. They agreed and gave us $100,000 a year for three years to get the program going. Those three years have come and gone, and, to their credit, the USGA is still sponsoring the golf program which has steadily grown along with our other programs. We are proud of our accomplishments over the last twenty years. We have an exceptional staff that is dedicated to environmental education and takes great satisfaction in working to help people help the environment where they live, work, and play. The Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program is thriving because people are concerned about the environment, and because they sincerely want to improve the environment not just for themselves, but for future generations. All of Audubon International’s programs are founded on a partnership approach— a willingness to work together toward common goals—and all of our successes are our members’ successes. Congratulations to you for all your good work! l

2O Audubon Stewards


ne of our greatest pleasures at Audubon International is the relationships we forge with individuals across the world. Many of our most enthusiastic members are asked to be part of the Audubon Steward Network. The network is comprised of Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ACSP) members who have volunteered to help Audubon International maintain local sources of support in their regions. As working partners with Audubon International staff for education and outreach, Audubon Stewards use their knowledge and experience within the ACSP to provide information and assistance to others who have registered or might be interested in ACSP programs. We would like to take this opportunity to introduce twenty of these dedicated individuals and share some of their thoughts about the ACSP for Golf Courses.


“Beaconsfield Golf Club has benefited from membership by receiving community recognition for its attention to environmental issues. The program is excellent and the list of specific goals gives us something to aim for.” Doug Meyer, Beaconsfield Golf Club, Pointe-Claire, Quebec


“Being an Audubon Steward and gaining credibility as a speaker talking about environmental management and Audubon International has been very rewarding. It has helped fuel my passion and helped open up other environmental accolades for Brooks National.” Brett Hetland, Brooks National Golf Club, Okoboji, IA


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2O Audubon Stewards

Continued from page 5

“The ACSP provides valuable guidance as well as public recognitions to the efforts made on the golf course to create an atmosphere that is representative of the natural world. Our members are proud to be part of the program and enjoy the many benefits the relationship has.” Dean Graves (second from right), Chevy Chase Club, Chevy Chase, MD


“Although winning many awards and being written about in numerous articles is very satisfying, our biggest accomplishment is our ability to maintain a very good golf course at a 90% natural organic/ biological to 10% synthetic chemical use ratio.”


“One of our biggest achievements in the ACSP is the environmental awareness that has been achieved both through the golf course directly, but also indirectly, as it affects our gated-community’s environmental programs.” Marvin Bouknight, Oldfield Club, Okatie, SC

“Most superintendents don’t communicate the good things that they do at their courses, so there is a lot of opportunity for us as an industry to get the word out. We are viewed by our neighbors and the local community as good stewards of our property. The members of our club are proud that we are certified in the ACSP, and they feel good about the way we manage our course.” Steve Kealy, Glendale Country Club, Bellevue, WA


7. “I believe the biggest benefit of the program has been getting my cast members [maintenance staff] excited about the program. It wasn’t long until my cast developed a passion for this new adventure.” Robert Karnes, Lake Buena Vista Golf Club and Osprey Ridge Golf Club, Lake Buena Vista, FL


Pat Blum, Colonial Acres Golf Course, Glenmont, NY

4. “The strongest benefit of the ACSP is that it creates a format to document accomplishments and goals. The process helps us evaluate our efforts, gives us ideas on how to improve, and assures us we are doing our due diligence in our efforts to combat environmental issues.” Gary Ingram, Metropolitan Golf Links, Oakland, CA


“One of the most significant benefits we have gained from being involved with the program has been the ability to educate people who would not have had the opportunity to learn about what golf courses do to sustain and enhance the environments in and around them. Explaining how our programs and practices are carried out on a daily basis really opens people’s eyes when it is presented to them in a professional manner.” Lance Morris, Priddis Greens Golf and Country Club, Priddis, Alberta


“Our biggest accomplishment through the program has been the recognition in the community as a golf course that is doing the “right thing” in maintaining the golf course. I am very proud to be carrying out my duties as a golf course superintendent in an environmentally sound way.” Vance Much, Resort Semiahmoo, Blaine, WA



“You can’t monitor what you don’t measure and using the tools in place from Audubon International we have been measuring and monitoring all the benefits since we joined the program. We estimate a cost savings in the vicinity of $10,000.00 per year.”

“The strongest part of the program is the initial environmental auditing requirements within the various categories. It makes one take a long, hard look at everything you do. This process also points out many obvious ways to make improvements. I have gained a tremendous sense of pride and satisfaction from doing things in an environmentally responsible way.” Marc Brooks, Stone Tree Golf and Fitness Club, Owen Sound, Ontario


Matt Ceplo, Rockland Country Club, Sparkill, NY

12. “The strongest part of the program is that the process helps you to organize property specific data as it relates to stewardship allowing for transparency and better decisions that affect sustainability. As the pressures from regulatory agencies have increased, our documented environmental efforts and successes have been a huge benefit to the property.” Anthony Williams, Stone Mountain Golf Club, Stone Mountain, GA

“The single greatest benefit of the certification process has been developing a template for all environmental issues and specific reasons for performing all tasks on the golf course. As environmental issues have come up and continue to come up, we are fully prepared because of our existing proactive initiatives.” James Beebe, Priddis Greens Golf and Country Club, Priddis, Alberta



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2O Audubon Stewards

Continued from page 5


“The ACSP has provided me with knowledge, guidance and a general understanding of how I should work with the environment in a structured way. It provides me with practical, easy-to-apply ideas. I appreciate the opportunity to network with other like-minded individuals.”

“Participation in the program has increased our knowledge and awareness of responsible environmental practices. It helps us to educate the public and golfers on environmental issues and maintenance practices.” Shaun J. Riley, Mountain Golf Course at Incline Village, Incline Village, NV


“Stone Creek joined the ACSP to document activities pertaining to sustainability and wildlife enhancement. It has been a good platform to promote the activities and to show that we ‘walk the talk’.” David Phipps, Stone Creek Golf Club, Oregon City, OR

Håkan Rasmusson, Värpinge Golfbana, Lund, Sweden

“The strongest part of the certification process is the process itself. Improving the environmental aspects of the golf course, getting golfers and staff members to see that the golf course is more than just a place to play or work, and changing the perception of golf courses in the public eye makes it all worthwhile.” Paul L. Carter, CGCS, The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay, Harrison, TN

18. 16. “Most of the members like the natural environment and the recognition has been great!!! We have won many state, local, and national awards.” Carl Suding, Padre Isles Country Club, Corpus Christi, TX



“Our property, which had very little wildlife value prior to joining the program, is now filled with a variety of native habitat and plant varieties. The community members recognize our staff as environmental leaders.” Chris Pekarek, Village Links of Glen Ellyn, Glen Ellyn, IL

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From ACSP to Classic–

Keppel Land’s Certified Golf Sanctuaries Na n c y R i c h a r d s o n

Ria Bintan Golf Club


eppel Land Limited continues to work with Audubon International to set new benchmarks in sustainable development with three of its golf courses now designated as Certified Classic Sanctuaries by Audubon International. Tianjin Pearl Peach International Country Club in Tianjin, China, became the first in the world to be designated as a Classic Sanctuary in April 2009. Later in 2010, award-winning sister golf courses, Spring City Golf and Lake Resort in Kunming, China, and Ria Bintan Golf Club in Bintan, Indonesia, passed on-site reviews to achieve the Classic Sanctuary certification. With these two newly certified projects, Keppel Land Limited also set another precedent. Before registering in the Classic Program, both Spring City and Ria Bintan were certified through the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Existing Golf Courses. The new Classic certification for each project demonstrates Keppel’s continued commitment to the conservation of environmental resources while enhancing the quality of its facilities and golf course properties.

The Indonesian work crew stopped very briefly from their hand weeding of the golf course and landscape beds to enjoy a moment for the camera.

Through the Classic Program, Audubon International offers planning, technical, and educational consultancy to help existing developments protect natural resources both on and off site. To achieve certification, Keppel Land Limited has implemented measures in its golf courses and real estate which address the following areas: • Best management practices • Wildlife and habitat enhancement • Water quality management and conservation • Integrated pest management • Upgrade of the maintenance facilities • Environmental monitoring • Outreach and education

While a tsunami was inundating the western coast of Sumatra and Mount Merapi was erupting, I was visiting the northern part of Bintan Island very closed to these natural events. Bintan Island is the largest of 3,200 islands in Indonesia. It is 28 miles southeast of Singapore and can be reached by ferry. Overlooking the Singapore Straits of the South China Sea, Ria Bintan Resort is home to a 432 acre 27-hole Gary Player-designed golf course, a clubhouse with 31 new golf lodge rooms, a practice range, and the renowned ClubMed™ hotel which boasts 302 rooms and recreational facilities. The ClubMed™ hotel was opened in October 1997 while the Ria Bintan Golf Club’s Ocean Course and the first nine holes of the Forest Course opened for play in October 1998 and December 2000 respectively. Ria Bintan Resort is set on 1,130 tropical acres and receives 140 inches of rain a year with monsoons from November to January. There are no natural surface water bodies except for streams that flow as a result of the natural drainage, and created ponds on the golf courses are used for stormwater detention and aesthetics, with some pond water used for irrigation. There is a distinct transition between the sandy-soil mixture that was used to cap the entire golf course after rough grading and that of the jungle. The development also has about two miles of coastline, including just over a mile of white sand beaches. The surrounding jungle has been left untouched and the wildlife from within the jungle is managed to exclude them from the golf course. This integrated design allows a “one-withnature” theme to permeate the entire resort.


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Through the Classic Program, the Ria Bintan Golf Club team was able to achieve savings amounting to about $24,000 a year by implementing the following: • Relocating sprinkler heads and reducing the duration of the irrigation cycle, while ensuring that the turf receives sufficient water for healthy growth • Introduction of part-circle sprinkler heads instead of full-circle ones at certain locations • Collection of rainwater for cleaning turf equipment and carts thereby saving potable water sources • Encouraging the growth of vegetation around lake edges to provide food, shelter, and breeding space for a variety of small animals such as fish, frogs, and wild ducks. • Encouraging the growth of vegetation along streams so that they act as “buffers” and improve overall water quality • Reduce the managed turf area within the golf course by planting Wedelias (a native ground cover). To date, about 6,000 square meters in the roughs and slopes have been converted or naturalized. This in itself resulted in a savings of about $12,000 per year in maintenance budget. • Improved the layout, storage, and procedures at the maintenance facility for better efficiency

Macaques patrol the golf course for food and fun. Long-tailed macaques were originally found primarily around mangrove systems where they specialized in foraging for crab but they are now observed regularly on the golf course and near the golf structures.

Since Ria Bintan Golf Club is imbedded within the rain forest, especially to the west and south, it is important to educate visitors about the value of being cautious and accommodating of the reptiles and mammals. Appropriate subtle locations have interpretive signage giving information about the various habitats, the species encountered, the historical patterns of land use, and enhancement that the surrounding area has undergone. The signage provides an opportunity to teach guests and staff about these ecosystems and to showcase the good conservation work accomplished by Ria Bintan Golf Club. On October 27, 2010, Ria Bintan Golf Club was officially designated as a Certified Audubon International Classic Sanctuary. Ria Bintan Golf Club is the First certified Classic Sanctuary in Indonesia and the third certified Classic Sanctuary in the world.

Spring City Golf and Lake Resort Bintan Island was as close to the equator as I have ever been and the heat and humidity was far from the cooler weather that I encountered in Kunming, China, home to Spring City Golf and Lake Resort. Spring City was in a different country, a different habitat, and had a different feel but it was just as breathtaking. Comprised of two championship golf courses, the scenic Mountain Course designed by Jack Nicklaus and the Lake Course by Robert Trent Jones Jr., Spring City is a popular destination with both local and foreign golfers alike having garnered over 80 global awards since its opening in 1998. The 36-hole golf course, clubhouse, 73-room lodging facility, and practice range are set within a residential community on 1,250 acres. The course is embedded within the Yunnan Plateau subtropical evergreen forests. The resort is bordered by the Yang Zhong Hai Lake—a large natural lake, a mountain, and farm land. The Jack Nicklaus course is 117 acres including the bunkers and driving range. Of that, 111 acres is maintained turfgrass. The Robert Trent Jones II course is 76 acres. Of that, 73 acres is maintained


The Nursery at Spring City Golf and Lake Resort where native plants are raised and distributed for use throughout the resort.

turfgrass, bringing the entire maintained area for the two courses to 184 acres. Continuous naturalization creates the impression that the golf course was designed to incorporate the natural land contours preserving mature stands of eucalyptus trees and indigenous flora. There is a total of 875 acres of forested area within the development, of which 80 percent is native vegetation. Kunming belongs to a low-latitude monsoon climate, does not have bitter cold in winter or extreme heat in summer. The annual temperature averages around 58.1º F and foliage remains green all year thus the name of the “Spring City.” Surface water quality and the potential for introduction of unwanted chemicals to the ponds and the Yang Zhong Hai Lake was utmost concern to Audubon International and the local environmental agency. The agency staff has determined that any water falling on maintained areas on the golf course is golf course waste water and must be retained. The renovations allow stormwater drainage to be retained on-site through a system of large drainage basins that are interconnected. Because all of the drainage ponds

are connected, during times of substantial rain events, large volumes of water can be stored and pumped to various onsite storage areas as needed. The overall result is a series of eight retention ponds, a series of drainage swales, and created wetlands. All of the surface drainage is captured for reuse or for discharge into another watershed area away from the Yang Zhong Hai Lake. In total, 10 acres of man-made lakes, 30 square kilometers of natural lake with 12,000 linear feet of naturalized shoreline were utilized meet agency requirements. The course has also undergone significant changes with reductions in the amount of maintained turf areas being converted to native vegetation. This has been very effective both visually and environmentally. At the Lakes Course, 150 yard drop in the elevation between Hole 1 on the hill and Hole 9 by the side of the lake creates a unique and visually stimulating terraced effect. With each of its eighteen holes facing the lake, the terraced course presents spectacular views. Nearly all of plants used were left undisturbed or locally transplanted, eliminating purchasing costs and reducing overall costs to labor and transportation. On October 29, 2010, Spring City Golf

Through the Classic Program, the following was accomplished at Spring City: • New procedure for washing equipment and carts which filters rinsate more effectively • Addition of a roof over the fuel loading and storage zone • Re-design of the pesticide mix/ load area • Continued conversion of turf areas into natural vegetative areas • Identification of non-native invasive plants

and Lake Resort became the second Certified Classic Sanctuary in China and the fourth in the world. Because of Keppel’s environmental vision for the future, all three Keppel golf courses are now operating according to an approved Classic Property Management Plan, which will provide continuity for the management of natural resources and other aspects of the property. We look forward to working with Keppel in other projects in the future. l

The Lakes Course, facing Yang Zhong Hai Lake, provides extended buffers for filtration and protection of the quality of the lake water.


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(MORE) Questions

About the ACSP for Golf

J e n n i f e r Ba t z a

fication process difficult because there is not a direct line of communication between you and Audubon International. The certification process is very simple to follow and is laid out step-by-step in the certification handbook. In addition, if you have any questions you can always call our office and we will be happy to answer any questions you have.

2. Where can I find my eco-region and dominant natural plant community?

You can find your eco-region and dominant natural plant community in your new member packet or in the members-only area of our website. Using these two documents you can determine which plant species are invasive to your area and which native species you should purchase.

3. I am the new superintendent of the golf course, where do I begin?

First, search your office for the course certification materials. If you are unable to find prior certification materials, please email Jennifer Batza, Certification materials will not be mailed. Instead, certification materials will be sent in PDF form by email.

4. What size property map is 1. Do I need to work with a consultant to become and Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary? No. The

Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program is a voluntary environmental education program. The goal of the program is to educate members so that they can manage the natural resources of your golf course more effectively. Often times a third-party consultant can make the certi-

required? A property map printed on legal size paper or smaller works best. Do not send large format maps. Please label golf holes, naturalized areas, wildlife structures, and other areas of interest.

5. When is the best time of the year to send my certification request? The

summer months are the best time to send your certification request. Remember a slow time at your course is our busy time.

6. I have completed and submitted the Site Assessment and Environmental Plan. Can I continue before I receive my certification report? Yes.

To continue, look through your environmental plan again. If the majority of your answers in a section are “yes� then you may apply for certification in that area.

7. Do I need to change the certification forms or re-type the information?

No. We do not require you to create a fancy report for certification. In fact, doing so will delay the completion of your certification request.

8. What happens after I send my certification request? Certification requests are logged into our system and reviewed in the order in which they arrived. Reviews typically take between one to three months to complete, although December to March is our busy season, so reviews may take longer.

9. My golf course is a private club without children; will this hinder our Outreach and Education certification?

No. There are several ways to meet Outreach and Education certification requirements. A few ways include: creating a display that highlights your environmental stewardship efforts, hosting an environmental stewardship tour of golf course with your members, or assisting a local school with creating a butterfly garden on school property. For more ideas, give us a call. continued on page 11

Fact Sheet E d u c at i o n a l

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Welcoming Wildlife: Wild Turkeys

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rom holiday entrée to contender for the national bird, the wild turkey is an iconic part of the American landscape. Widespread throughout eastern and the central United States and Canada, the wild turkey once ranged from southern Maine, west through southern Ontario to central South Dakota, south to eastern Arizona, and east to Florida. However with the arrival of European settlers and the ever-changing landscape, wild turkey populations soon declined to the point of near extirpation by 1935. The combination of habitat loss from agriculture, the destructions of mature nut-producing trees, excessive hunting, over-grazing by livestock, nest flooding, unfavorable climatic changes, and predation has led to the rapid decline of a bird population that was once more than ten million birds.

The Bear Trace at HarrisonBay is an 18-hole Jack Nicklaus Signature golf course located near Chattanooga, TN. The golf course is operated by Tennessee’s Department of Environment and Conservation. As you might expect, environmental stewardship is very important. The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay became an Audubon International Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary in 2008 and has since been exploring new ways to improve and enhance the environment.

Fortunately, the wild turkey is also known as one of the greatest wildlife restoration success stories. Vigorous restoration programs and regulated hunting seasons in 49 states, have allowed turkeys to once again inhabit most of its ancestral range. In fact some population studies indicate a natural range expansion result-

ing from the protection afforded to this highly valued public game resource. The concept that a wildlife species is a public trust resource is what allows all wildlife restoration to be successful. What follows is the success story of how the staff at one golf course decided to try invite more turkeys to their continued on reverse

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Wild turkey feeder at The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay

property, and ended up doubling the initial population. Late in 2009 a flock of nineteen turkeys were spotted at The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay. The presence of the turkeys was a welcome sight considering that more than one at a time had not been seen in the past. In an effort to encourage the turkeys to stay at the golf course, and under the advice of a local fellow golf course superintendent who has extensive experience with wild turkeys, The Bear Trace staff purchased cracked corn and placed it on the ground near the corridors that the turkey had been moving though. As the days passed, more and more turkeys continued to visit and move through the golf course while growing more comfortable with the surroundings and distant human observers. Quickly realizing that they needed to provide a more suitable way of providing supplemental food for the turkeys, staff started looking at mechanical feeders to place out on the golf course. However, due to funding limitations, purchasing a mechanical feeder would not be possible so they began to explore other options. Many feeder designs were discussed but a simple, trough style design that would

be refilled by gravity feed as the cracked corn was removed, was soon settled on. Previously purchased pieces of double walled ADS, four inch solid drain tile were selected to construct the feeder because it was sturdy and the black color would not be noticeable. The trough section was made by cutting off a 24 inch section of pipe. This pipe was capped on one end with a standard ADS four inch cap and the other end inserted into a standard four inch ninety degree elbow. The top half of the pipe was cut out to form the feeder trough. Small holes were drilled in the bottom of pipe to allow moisture to be removed from the area so the feed would not be damaged. A five to six foot section of solid pipe was then inserted into the other side of the ninety degree elbow and a cap placed on the end of the pipe. This section of the pipe would be placed against the tree directed upward and would serve as the holding tube for the feed which would fall into the trough as

the feed was removed by the turkeys. The feeder was attached to a tree on the seventeenth hole, where the turkey could be seen on each day, using metal plumber’s tape. It took only a few days for the turkey and other animals to find the feeder. It soon became apparent that the 24 inch length of the trough was too long and that it could not support the weight of the feed and the force of the feeding action. A deer was observed stepping on the trough, which was located about twelve inches off the ground, knocking the trough section off and releasing all the feed in the storage tube at one time. To remedy this problem, the staff shortened the trough section to twelve inches, and there have not been any issues since. Building on the success of the first feeder, the Bear Trace staff decided to tweak their feeder. Using the same design, the staff decided to use a four inch PVC irrigation pipe painted black, resulting in a much more durable feeder that has shown no damage since being placed on the golf course. Also using the same design, the staff produced another feeder using gray electrical conduit, which was even better as it was dark in color without having to be spray painted. The staff at The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay has had great success providing food by utilizing surplus supplies. In fact, they report many poults have been fledged in 2010, and they estimate the population of wild turkey has more than doubled.

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(MORE) Questions About the ACSP for Golf

10. If I choose to mail my certifica-


Continued from page 12

11. Do I need to express mail my

fees typically range from $400 to $1,000 (plus travel expenses), depending on the location and length of the visit. To schedule a site visit, please email Joellen Lampman, You can also have an independent third-party verifier visit your golf course. Local birders or college professors are great members of the community to connect with and educate about the great things you are doing on your course.

certification requests? No. Please use regular mail with the least amount of packaging possible. Express mail is very costly and will not guarantee a speedy review or your certification request.

Are there any prerequisites for using the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses Certification Logo? Yes. Any organiza-

tion request, what should I send?

Although we prefer you to upload your certification request online, please do not send binders, sleeves, or report covers of any kind. It is best if you photocopy the section of the certification handbook you are working on and send only that section and any additional documentation. Please do not send the entire handbook.

12. Should I mail individual certification requests separately? If you are going to be mailing individual certification requests within days of each other mail all certification requests together. However, if you have completed a certification area and have not yet started another area, please mail in a single certification request.

13. Should I print and mail photos? No. Please do not print photos you send. We cannot use photos that are printed. We prefer that photos are submitted digitally though the members-only area online. If you must mail your photos, please provide digital copies on a compact disc. Photos must be at least 4” x 6” at 300 dpi.

14. Do I need to label points of interest on my photos? No. Please do not label your photos. We cannot use photos where buffer zones, wildlife, etc. are labeled. If we have questions about the content of a picture we will contact you.

15. Will Audubon International conduct a site visit of my golf course?

Yes. Audubon International site visit


tion or individual that wishes to use the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses Certification Logo must be an active status program member that has been designated as a Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary by Audubon International.

17. Where can I use the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses Certification Logo? The

Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses Certification Logo can be used on many different documents: • Member Web sites, promotional materials, and exhibit booths. • Internal communications, posters, flyers, and brochures to educate/update employees, consumers, and customers about Audubon International and the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses. • In advertisements (e.g., trade press, consumer magazines, yellow pages, television spots) to promote the member’s commitment to the efforts of Audubon International and the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses.

In addition, the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses Certification Logo may not be used: • On letterhead, business cards, or external correspondence. • On products or material intended for sale (e.g., mugs, hats, shirts)

18. Do I need to send a proof before publication if I use the logo?

Yes. Maintaining the credibility of Audubon International and Audubon International certification programs depends on enforcing the logo use guidelines. Each time the logo is used, the program member must submit the use to Audubon International for approval. Audubon International will determine if logo usage is appropriate. If logo usage is deemed to be inappropriate, Audubon International will contact the program member in writing or by email.

19. What are the logo specifications? The Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program for Golf Courses Certification Logo consists of the horizontal Audubon International logo with the text “Certified Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary” below the Audubon International title. The logo may be printed in black, grayscale, or Pantone 647 CVC (blue)/Pantone Black C (black), no smaller than 30 percent of the original size. Black or reversed white versions of the logo are also allowed for use. The logo should not be distorted or altered in any way. Logos are provided in EPS or AI formats.

20. What formats are available for the logo? Logos are provided in EPS or

AI formats. The EPS format can be used with Microsoft Publisher, but the AI format requires advanced design software, such as Adobe Illustrator. Sign and brochure designers will have no problem using either of these formats. l

Stewardship News


First Annual Audubon International Award Given to USGA’s James T. Snow Audubon International is pleased to announce that James T. Snow, National Director of the United States Golf Association (USGA) Green Section, has been named the first recipient of The Ronald G. Dodson Golf & the Environment Leadership Award. The award was announced on February 9, 2011 as a part of Audubon International’s Twentieth Anniversary celebration during the Golf Industry Show.

Audubon International publishes Stewardship News four times a year. Inquiries, contributions, or letters to the editor should be addressed to: Joshua Conway, Editor Audubon International 46 Rarick Road Selkirk, NY 12158

Or sent via e-mail to: Layout and Design: 2k Design,

Clifton Park, NY

Printing: Benchemark Printing,

Schenectady, NY

Audubon International is a non-profit environmental organization dedicated to fostering more sustainable human and natural communities through research, education, and conservation assistance. Programs seek to educate, assist, and inspire millions of people from all walks of life to protect and sustain the land, water, wildlife, and natural resources around them. Funding is provided by memberships, donations, and program sponsorship. The ACSP Golf Program is sponsored by The United States Golf Association. The newsletter is printed on recycled paper.

Look inside for a tear-out fact sheet! If you have a change of address or contact ­person, please let us know. Call (518) 767-9051, ­ext. 110 or E-mail

Help us to keep up to date! Phone: (518) 767-9051 Web Page: e-mail: Audubon International 46 Rarick Road Selkirk, New York 12158

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