Friday, August 3, 2012

OOS Conference - be there!

The Ohio Ornithological Society's 8th annual meeting takes place September 28 - 30, and you won't want to miss it. These conferences are tops for birders, and this year's event is all the better in that it will take place at the beautiful Lakeside on the shores of Lake Erie, where the past two Midwest Birding Symposiums were held. Lakeside is an oasis for birds and birders, and as fall migration will be in full swing, you're liable to see plenty of good stuff right on the grounds. Walk out Lakeside's pier, which juts far into Lake Erie, and who knows - you might tick some mega, like a Long-tailed Jaeger. Stranger things have happened...

Of course, there'll be excellent birding in nearby exotic locales such as Magee Marsh Wildlife Area, Ottawa National Wildlife Refuge, Meadowbrook Marsh, and East Harbor State Park. Expert birders will be stationed at all of these places, and whether or not your blogger fits in that category or not I'll still be manning East Harbor. I've got a long history with that place, which might be termed Magee Marsh East, and fabulous birds can turn up here. Not to mention rare plants, but we'll try to keep our eyes on the sky...

The OOS has managed to snare the legendary birder/photographer Kevin T. Karlson, and plans on shipping him all the way to Lakeside from his - and Bruce Springsteen's - home state of New Jersey. Kevin's imagery is stunning, and scores of books and publications have featured his stuff, including his newest book, Visions: Earth's Elements in Bird and Nature Photography. Kevin is an entertaining and engaging speaker, and he'll be keynoting Saturday night, in addition to offering a photography workshop.

Providing the Friday night keynote address is Lukas Padegimas, seen here addressing an Ohio Young Birders Conference. Many of us in Ohio have known Lukas since he was just a wee lad, and he has morphed into one of the Buckeye State's rising ornithological stars. He spent last summer in the wild's of Alaska's Arctic tundra, assisting with a shorebird census and gathering ecological data on declining species. He's going to tell us all about that and it's sure to be interesting.

Photo: Dr. Bernard Master

There's much more - there always is at an OOS conference - including the chance to meet your fellow birders from far and wide. And meet plenty of birds, too. Late September offers a rich blend of avian species along Lake Erie's south shore. Shorebirds, such as this artfully photographed Long-billed Dowitcher, are winging through, as are plenty of songbirds. You'll rack up a healthy list, guaranteed.

I hope to see you up at Lakeside in late September, and pass the word - the more, the merrier. For complete conference details and registration, just CLICK HERE.

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