Posted inNews

What in the piping plover? New website sheds light on Colorado’s 350 most sensitive species.

How are scientists working to protect the toothless, federally endangered Colorado pikeminnow? Which species is most at risk from the state’s energy production and mining? What’s a piping plover? The answers can be found on Colorado Parks and Wildlife’s new species conservation dashboard, which lists more than 350 sensitive species that call Colorado home and […]

Posted inNews

Bird nerd alert: Rare yellow feathered cutie spotted in San Luis Valley bush for first time in over 100 years

It might have been his car engine ticking away the summer heat that Eric DeFonso heard when he switched off the ignition in the Monte Vista National Wildlife Refuge on July 12. But it was still early morning, and cool. He hadn’t driven that far from his campsite. And DeFonso had spent hundreds of hours […]

Posted inClimate, Environment, News, Outdoors, Water

Bird count examines what happens when high-country Colorado irrigators use less water

By Heather Sackett, Aspen Journalism KREMMLING — In the gray light of dawn, hundreds of swallows darted over a pool of standing water in an irrigated field along the Colorado River. The birds were attracted to the early-morning mosquitos swarming the saturated landscape. Bill Vetter, a wildlife biologist with Wyoming-based Precision Wildlife Resources, methodically counted […]

Posted inClimate, Culture, Environment, Growth, News, Outdoors

Scientists want Coloradans to turn off their lights to help migrating birds

While you slept over the weekend, an estimated 9.5 million birds took to Colorado’s sky. During the peak of this spring songbird migration period, over 350 million birds fly over the continent each night, pursuing the rush of tasty bugs and warm weather that comes with spring, the resources and conditions necessary to raise their […]

Posted inColoradans, Environment, News, Outdoors

The squawking, stomping chicken of the grasslands is back in Colorado

This wild chicken stomps its small feet so enthusiastically to attract a girlfriend that it tamps down its own section of grassland prairie. Feathers that look like tiny horns pop up from its head, and bright-orange, balloon-like pockets inflate on the sides of its neck as it cackles and “booms.” The male lesser prairie-chicken has […]

Posted inOpinion, Write On, Colorado

The birds remind us that even in times like this, the natural world is all around

Spring Break  The end of February was so bleak, brown, eaten down,beaten down, laid over, pressed flat, no apparent life loitering anywhere, even in the spaces we have left for it.Dirty November snowdrifts, glaciated, still lingering in windbreak shadows,the lone coyote crossing the still frozen lake searching for boney turd or duck carcass.Blackbirds, Finches, Sparrows and […]

Posted inOpinion, Write On, Colorado

I read about empty grocery shelves while watching birds hunt and peck on my porch. This poem came to me.

The Hungry Sparrows The little birds arrived this morningAt the concrete cafeDancing for their breakfast yetFinding none at their feet.Have they forgotten thatThe morsels they seekAre hidden as alwaysIn plain sightAbove their tiny headsIn the hanging pan whereThey usually sit toEat and chirp in whispersAbout news of worry and wonder; Did you hear about Jose,The […]

Posted inBusiness, Energy, Environment, News, Politics and Government

Wyoming and Idaho join Interior Department to appeal court ruling blocking rollback of sage grouse protections

By Keith Ridler, The Associated Press  The Interior Department, Idaho and Wyoming are appealing a court ruling that halted a Trump administration plan to ease land-use restrictions in seven Western states that protect struggling sage grouse. The notices filed Monday say the agency and states will seek a review by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court […]

Posted inEnvironment, News, Politics and Government

Sage grouse numbers decline in Idaho since decision not to make birds an endangered species

BOISE, Idaho — Idaho’s sage grouse population has dropped 52% since the federal government decided not to list the birds as an endangered species in the fall of 2015. It’s not yet clear whether the three-year decline is part of a cyclical pattern or indicative of a more serious issue, but the Idaho Statesmanreports the trend […]