Upcoming Events, Programs, and Field Trips

Events, Programs, & Field Trips

A “Big Natural Year” in Wild America

Speakers - Andy and Ellen Stepniewski

March 23rd (Thursday), 7pm, Yakima Area Arboretum + Zoom

Image - A Big Natural Year in Wild America
A Big Natural Year in Wild America

Roger Tory Peterson invited his British colleague James Fisher on a 3-month natural history tour of North America in 1953. They recounted this journey in Wild America, which takes the reader on a wonderful armchair excursion of our continent’s natural venues. Though not a stated goal, theirs was an early “Big Year” in the parlance of birders. They amassed a list of over 580 species of birds. Since this book was published 65 years ago, it has inspired countless naturalists and birders into learning about and visiting the stupendous natural areas Peterson and Fisher visited. Too, a sequel Return to Wild America: a yearlong search for the Continent’s Natural Soul by Scott Weidensaul) 40 years later focuses on the monumental ecologic changes that have occurred in the sites originally visited.

Andy and Ellen undertook a visit to many of the areas Peterson and Fisher chronicled on their trip in 2022. In this presentation, they will share their travels to a good number of these areas and their flora and fauna, and especially the birds they observed around this vast continent. Though Peterson and Fisher’s circuit of North America was limited to three months, Andy and Ellen took a year and so were able to take their time to more thoroughly visit and explore North America’s varied environments during their “prime time.” During their year, they tallied more than 700 species of birds, testament to a vastly improved road system and knowledge of “where the birds are” as compared to 70 years ago.

Image - Speakers - Andy and Ellen Stepniewski
Speakers - Andy and Ellen Stepniewski

Andy and Ellen Stepniewski are life-long naturalists with a love for travel, natural environments, and birds. Both have a long involvement in the Yakima Valley Audubon Society, holding various leadership roles.

This is planned to be a hybrid program, in-person, and electronically. We will be gathering at the Yakima Area Arboretum for this monthly program. Though we hope to see you all there, for those unable to attend, we will attempt to also have a simultaneous Zoom version available and a recording of the program on the YVAS website.

The link for the zoom version will be:

The next program will be Thursday, April 27. Speaker and topic to be announced.

Webinar Viewing tips for YVAS Webinars

Would you like to enjoy Yakima Valley Audubon presentations with the whole family? You can now watch our programs whenever it is convenient for you! Our monthly programs are now available as webinars for viewing both in real time (so you can ask questions) and as recordings from a link on our website.

To view the live presentation on your laptop, tablet, or smart phone, click on the link in that month’s Calliope Crier or go to https://yakimaaudubon.org about five minutes before the program is scheduled to start and click on the Zoom webinar link. If you have never attended a Zoom meeting, you will be asked to download the app this first time. (You do not have to have your own Zoom account to join the webinar.) Be sure to answer ‘yes’ to the questions about joining with video and audio. You can always mute yourself for privacy, but you will need to answer yes to view and hear the presentation.

To better enjoy the beautiful photos in the presentation, you have the option of viewing it on a larger screen, such as your smart TV. To do this, you will need to connect your device to the TV with an HDMI cable. If your device does not have an HDMI port, there are inexpensive multiport adaptors available to enable this. (Try Office Depot or buy one online.)

It is even easier to view a recorded seminar once it has been posted on our website! You can watch the recording through your Internet browser, or, if your smartTV allows you to connect to an internet browser, you can simply go directly to our website and click on the seminar link. Video and sound will automatically be displayed and controlled on your Smart TV. Alternatively, you can pull up the webinar on your computer as above and connect your computer with an HDMI cable to your Smart TV.

Even in these challenging times, Yakima Audubon is committed to bringing you information about our natural world. Please let us know at info@yakimaaudubon.org what you think and what we can do to improve this experience for you.

Previous Programs

Additional programs and videos can be found on our Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/watch/yakimaaudubon/

Hummingbirds and Attracting Them to Your Garden

Saturday, April 22, 2023 at 10 am to noon

Image - Hummingbird Female at Salvia Plant
Hummingbird Female at Salvia Plant

Hummingbirds are truly incredible birds! They amaze us with their boldly colored iridescent plumage, their wild aerial acrobatics, their overly aggressive personalities, and their miraculous migrations. Please join wildlife biologist and expert birder Jeff Kozma for a class focusing on how to identify and attract the four species of hummingbirds regularly found in Washington to your garden. Jeff has been growing nectar producing plants and providing feeders in his yard to attract hummingbirds for the last 17 years and he looks forward to sharing his techniques with you. During the class, Jeff will cover 1) a brief overview of hummingbird biology (e.g., habitat, migration, territoriality, etc.), 2) where and when to expect each hummingbird species, 3) how to landscape your yard with the types of plants that are most attractive to hummingbirds, while focusing on native plants that grow best in our warm dry climate, 4) the proper use of feeders (e.g., making sugar water, maintenance/cleaning/location of feeders, etc.), and 5) how to feed hummingbirds through the challenging winter months.

The two hour class will be at the Yakima Area Arboretum on Saturday, April 22, 2023 at 10 am. The cost will be $20 (Arboretum and Audubon members) or $25 for non- members. To register or for more information, contact the Arboretum: (509-248-7337 or https://www.ahtrees.org). Registration will be limited due to space in the meeting room.

Field Trips and Events Calendar

2023 YVAS Field Trips PDF