Keeping you informed about cool bird stuff in & near central Kentucky.

Peninsula Meeting -- It's Not Over 'til the City Council Sings
The official City Council hearing on the proposed development of the Squires Road Peninsula on Reservoir #4 will be held on Tuesday, April 18th, at 5:00pm in the Council chambers (200 East Main Street, 2nd floor). Though we were disappointed by the Planning Commission's 8-1 vote to approve the Ball Homes development plan as presented, we expect the City Council to give us a much fairer hearing. The City Council has been known to flat reject developments that have been Planning Commission approved, as they did recently by unanimous vote regarding a neighborhood near Fayette Mall. We need everyone against Ball Homes' current proposed plan to attend this meeting, preferably wearing green to show your support. We are guaranteed there will not be the (endless) postponements––this is a firm City Council date––and hopefully the 5:00pm hearing time will be more convenient for people's work schedules than the middle of the day hearings of the Planning Commission. We feel we have a good chance of getting some of our suggestions––like a wider conservation buffer, a trail system or a protective fence around the water's edge, and fewer houses and apartments–enacted. But we need your help. We had an amazing turnout for the first hearing and folks gave lots of wonderful comments in appeals to save the Peninsula. We can't thank enough those of you who showed up to protect this special piece of land and the wildlife it supports and those of you who were with us in spirit. Now we need to implore you once again to come to the hearing and stand with us as we try to protect riparian buffer and wildlife habitat from disappearing forever. We need to fill the building AGAIN to show that the community does not want this area abjectly destroyed. Please come. If you can't be there (or even if you can), please write a letter of support for the Peninsula, sign and scan it, and e-mail it to the Squires Road Smarter Development Group so the letters can be presented en masse. For more info, see the Facebook page.

CKAS Event Calendar Updated! -- Web Page to Follow Soon
So after a too-long period of not really knowing how to make the Central Kentucky Audubon Society Web Page Events Calendar functional, we finally rolled up our sleeves and did a little research and made a few phone calls and tried and tested a few platforms and figured some things out that might help us better communicate upcoming activities and events to everyone who might want to participate in them... If that opening sentence feels a little heavy, well, that's kind of how we felt throughout the process... Mostly, we just like to watch and help birds; we're not so good with web page stuff. But we're pleased to announce a new CKAS Event Calendar that we guarantee will show up on your regular computer, and even display in your choice of formats––monthly, agenda, or pin-board, all of which you can toggle at the top right of the page. Better yet, whereas our last calendar would not, this one will show up on your smart phone so you can check event info from the field. You can also push individual events to your personal calendar via links at the top of each event; and there may even be a way for you to subscribe to groups of events like "all bird walks," but we haven't yet figured out how to do that. (If you figure it out, tell us! We repeat: we're not so good with web page stuff.) And if you have an event you'd like us to list, the new calendar now lets you submit it for review.

Thank you to all of you who pushed us to get this done so we can once again post events someplace other than Facebook. We understand that building a community to watch and help birds requires we find a way to post events in a manner accessible to everyone and in all formats. We promise to do better. In fact, we're hoping to have the whole web page overhauled by mid-summer to better reflect CKAS's goals. If you want to be part of that process, by all means let us know. We could use the help.

Upcoming CKAS (& Other) Events    
These and other events can be found on our new CKAS Web Page Calendar and in our CKAS Facebook Calendar. Know of any bird-themed events we missed?  Our new Web Page Calendar has a submit events link.
Mar 29th (Wed.) 6:30pm-9:00pm: Free Movie: Audubon  Central Public Library's Farish Theater 140 East Main St., Lexington. Join CKAS and Bluegrass Earth for a free showing of Audubon: John James Audubon and the Birds of America, a highly-acclaimed documentary by Rara Avis about Audubon: artist, naturalist, and father of the American conservation movement.
Apr. 1st (Sat.) 7:30? Bird Walk NE Ky (TBD). Maybe Rowan County, maybe Wolfe County; looking Ruffed Grouse. Keep the day free. Note: as of this printing, we're not 100% sure where we're headed.  We'll be scouting a few more locations this week and should have details posted online by mid-Friday.
Apr. 5th (Wed.) 10:00am-12:00pm: Birds, Birds, Birds! Raven Run Nature Sanctuary 3990 Raven Run Way, Lexington. For Youth K-5th. Learn all about birds! Please RSVP by calling (859) 272-6105.
Apr. 5th (Wed.) 2:00pm-4:00pm: Build a Screech Owl Box The Arboretum 500 Alumni Drive, Lexington. Need a box to decorate for the Arboretum Birdhouse Exhibit? Join Wild Bill to learn about Screech Owls and assemble your own Screech Owl nest box. Family-friendly event, children 6 and up accompanied by an adult. Cost $5 payable at the event. Limited space so please preregister by calling 859-257-6955.
Apr. 5th (Wed.) 6:00pm-8:45pm: Moving Beyond the Native/Exotic Debate Fayette County Extension Office 1140 Red Mile Place, Lexington KY. The Urban Forestry Seminar Series presents a talk (starts at 7:00) by Dr. Nina Bassuk discussing best practices for a healthy urban forest.
Apr. 6th (Thu.) 6:30pm-8:30pm: Kentucky's Pollinator Plan St. Michael's Episcopal Church 2025 Bellefonte Drive, Lexington KY. Join Wild Ones in welcoming Tammy Horn, State Apiarist, for a presentation of Kentucky's Pollinator Protection Plan and her theories regarding hummingbirds being "bees with bigger wings."
April 7th (Fri.) 4:30pm Birdhouse Entry Forms Due! The Arboretum 500 Alumni Drive, Lexington. Want to enter a birdhouse for the 14th Birdhouse Display & Silent Auction (see April 21st)?  Entry forms available in the Visitor Center and due today. Fees: $10 adults, $5 under 12.
Apr. 8th (Sat.) 11:00am-12:30pm: 2nd Saturday Seminar (Program TBD) Wild Birds Unlimited 152 N. Locust Hill, Lexington.  Always something fun and educational! Keep your calendar free.
Apr. 12th (Wed.) 6:30pm-9:00pm: Free Movie: The Nature of Cities  Central Public Library's Farish Theater 140 East Main St., Lexington. Join the Sierra Club and Bluegrass Earth for a free showing of The Nature of Cities, a documentary which explores the possibility and power of incorporating nature in urban environments.
Apr. 15th (Sat.) 8:00am-11:30pm: Bird Walk Lexington Cemetery 833 W. Main St., Lexington. Meet/park around the first right turn after coming in the gate. Do NOT park in the gatehouse spaces!
Apr. 15th (Sat.) 9:00am-1:00pm: Reforest the Bluegrass Hisle Park 3601 Briar Hill Rd, Lexington. Join Reforest the Bluegrass and help replant the pre-settlement forests that were once common in central Kentucky. Stop by the CKAS table where we'll be advocating for birds and promoting the upcoming Bluegrass Birding Festival. Volunteers needed: e-mail CKAS to help.
Apr. 18th (Tue.) 5:00pm: Peninsula Development Case Hearing LFUCG Center 200 E. Main Street, 2nd Floor, Lexington KY. The City Council will hear the case for Ball Homes' development of the peninsula of land on Reservoir #4 off Squires Road. This is our last chance to show our support for the area's flora and fauna. The birds there need your support. Please plan to attend.
Apr. 19th (Wed.) 6:30pm-9:00pm: Free Movie: The Future of Energy  Central Public Library's Farish Theater 140 East Main St., Lexington. Join the Sierra Club and Bluegrass Earth for a free showing of The Future of Energy, a documentary about people and places working for a renewable energy future.
April 21st (Fri) to May 7th (Sun): 14th Birdhouse Display & Silent Auction The Arboretum 500 Alumni Drive, Lexington. Spring is For the Birds, so come see the birdhouse display. Notice a house you like? Bid on it in the Visitor Center. Proceeds benefit The Arboretum.
Apr. 22nd (Sat.) All day: EARTH DAY! Everywhere. Celebrate the 47th anniversary of Earth Day by getting outdoors and doing something green!
Apr. 22rd (Sat.) 7:30am-2:00pm: Bird Walk Minor E. Clark Fish Hatchery & Cave Run Lake (Daniel Boone National Forest) 120 Fish Hatchery Road, Morehead. To carpool/caravan: LEAVING at 7:30 from the parking lot of Eastland Shopping Center.  DO NOT BE LATE! Bring lunch.
Apr. 28th (Fri.) 8:00pm: Field Trip to DC Climate March Join 350 Louisville and the Cumberland Chapter of the Sierra Club on a bus ride to Washington DC to participate in the People's Climate March (Noon on Saturday, April 29th). Tickets: $98, available here.
Apr. 28th to 30th (Fri.-Sun.) Kentucky Ornithological Society Spring Meeting Kentucky Dam Village Resort Park 113 Upper Village Drive, Gilbertsville KY. Join KOS for their Spring Meeting. Keynote speaker: Steve Shunk, author of the Peterson Guide to Woodpeckers of North America. More info at
Apr. 29th (Sat.) 10:00am-2:00pm: Party for the Planet The Arboretum Alumni Drive, Lexington. Come celebrate the 26th anniversary of Arbor Day. More info here. Volunteers needed: e-mail CKAS to help.
May 3rd (Wed.) 7:00pm-9:30pm: CKAS Board Meeting Good Foods Co-Op: Rochdale Room 455 Southland Drive, Lexington. All members welcome! We usually do dinner after meeting.
May 4th (Thur.) All Day: Bird Day Everywhere. First celebrated in 1894, Bird Day was established to encourage conservation training and awareness of birds. Learn about Bird Day's connection to the conservation movement here.
May 7th (Sat.) 7:30am-1:00pm: Bird Walk Berea Woods Big Hill Rd, Hwy 21E, Berea. Carpools leaving from the outside parking lot of Lakeside Golf Course 3725 Richmond Road (Coys Drive) at 7:30 prompt. DO NOT BE LATE! Bring lunch. Or meet at the old Indian Fort Theater (2047 Big Hill, Berea) at 8:00am.
May 7th (Sun.) 2:00pm-4:00pm: Birdhouse Exhibit Reception The Arboretum 500 Alumni Drive, Lexington. It's you last chance to see and bid on the birdhouses. Join the Friends of the Arboretum for the final exhibit reception in the Visitor Center.
May 13th (Sat.) All Day: International Migratory Bird Day Everywhere. Celebrate one of the most important and spectacular events in the Americas - bird migration.
May 13th & 14th (Sat.-Sun.): Bluegrass Birding Festival McConnell Spring 416 Rebmann Lane, Lexington. Two day festival dedicated to all things related to birds. Will include guided bird walks, arts and crafts, vendors, presenters and more. More information in next month's news or at the Festival's Web or Facebook pages. Volunteers likely needed; stay tuned.
May 13th (Sat.): 8:00am-10:30am: Bird Walk Raven Run Nature Sanctuary 3990 Raven Run Way, Lexington. Join Raven Run naturalists for a morning walk to look for "Birds of the Bluegrass" regulars and migrants.
May 13th (Sat.) 10:00am-12:30pm: Blue Heron Rookery Cruise Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill 3501 Lexington Rd, Harrodsburg. Extended Discovery Trek riverboat cruise up the Kentucky River to the rookery. Bring your camera! Tickets $40; limited availability, registration and prepayment required.
May 14th (Sun.) 10:00am-12:30pm: Blue Heron Rookery Cruise Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill 3501 Lexington Rd, Harrodsburg. Extended Discovery Trek riverboat cruise up the Kentucky River to the rookery. Bring your camera! Tickets $40; limited availability, registration and prepayment required.
May 19th (Fri.) All Day: Endangered Species Day Everywhere. An opportunity for people of all ages to learn about the importance of protecting  endangered species and everyday actions they can take to help protect them. More info at the Endangered Species Coalition.
May 20th (Sat.) 7:30am-3:00pm: Bird Walk Red River Gorge Daniel Boone National Forest. Carpools leaving from the parking lot at Eastland Shopping Center (near the Rite Aid) at 7:30 prompt. DO NOT BE LATE! Bring lunch.
May 27th (Sat.) 7:30am-1:00pm: Bird Walk Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill 3501 Lexington Road, Harrodsburg KY. Join CKAS for a guided walk at Shaker Village. Carpools leaving from the parking lot of Palomar Center near Wild Eggs at 7:30 prompt. DO NOT BE LATE! Or meet at 8:15 at Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill in the main parking area by the restrooms & pond.
May 27th (Sat.): 10:00am-11:3am: Little Explorers All about Birds Raven Run Nature Sanctuary 3990 Raven Run Way, Lexington. For Youth K-5th. Learn all about our feathered friends! Please RSVP by calling (859) 272-6105.
May 31st (Wed.): 7:00pm-8:00pm: Barrows Conservation Lecture Series -- Joel Sartore Cincinnati Zoo Peacock Pavillion 3400 Vine St., Cincinnati OH. Join naturalist Scott Weidensaul for a lighthearted exploration of his many avian research projects. Tickets $15, please purchase/register here. If you are interested in a CKAS carpool/caravan, please e-mail and we’ll make a plan. NOTE: This event may already be sold out!  As of this printing, only one ticket remained thought the Zoo does keep a "waiting list."

John James Audubon
& the Birds of America
A film by Rara Avis

Wednesday, March 29th 6:30pm (film starts by 6:45)

*  FREE  *

The Farish Theater
Central Public Library
140 East Main, Lexington

& don't miss these upcoming
Bluegrass Earth Free Showings:

The Nature of Cities: April 12th

The Future of Energy: April 19th

Ruby-Throats Return
If you haven't gotten out your hummingbird feeders yet, it's time! We expect the first reports of hummers in Kentucky any day now. So dust off those feeders! Still buying store-bought nectar or mix? Several studies question whether the red dye in these formulas might be harmful to the birds. Opt for red feeders instead and avoid the red syrup. With a bright red feeder and simple sugar-water, you will be just as popular with the hummers. Make your own syrup: Mix one part ordinary white cane sugar to four parts water. Stir until all the sugar dissolves. It's that simple! It's not necessary to boil the water. The micro-organisms that cause fermentation don't come from the water; they are transported to the feeder on hummingbird bills. Store unused syrup in the refrigerator for up to two weeks. This mixture approximates the average sucrose content (21%) of the flowers favored by our hummers without being so sweet it attracts too many insects.

Interested in hummingbird citizen science? Check out Humming- birds at Home, a project to map hummer occurrence and collect data on how hummers interact with nectar sources. The study looks at the growing mismatch between flowering times and the arrival of hummingbirds in their breeding areas – a first step towards ensuring the survival of these miraculous  birds in the face of climate change.
Arboretum Birdhouse
Exhibit & Auction

April 21st to May 7th

Get your 2017 Birdhouse Exhibit Entries ready!  Birdhouses can be ready-made with creative embellishments and personal touches or constructed from scratch. They can be functional or ornamental or both (we prefer functional). Note, they need to be weather-worthy as they will be displayed outdoors.  Entry forms are due by April 7th, available in the Visitor Center.
Kroger gives millions of dollars to Kentucky non-profits with its Community Rewards® Program. If you shop at Kroger and have a Kroger Rewards® card, you can help us qualify for these funds by linking your Kroger Rewards® card to the Central Kentucky Audubon Society under the Community Rewards section of your Account Settings. Doing so will not affect the way you accrue fuel points in any way; you still keep all your rewards and gas savings--but your points will also count as our points, helping us increase our share of Kroger's charitable donations. Check the bottom of your Kroger receipt  for: "At your request we are donating to Central Kentucky Audubon Society."
Need to buy anything online? CKAS is now on Amazon Smile. When you #StartWithaSmile, Amazon donates 0.5% of your purchase price to the Central Kentucky Audubon Society, at no cost to you! Please bookmark this link to support CKAS every time you shop the net.
What if you don't receive Audubon Magazine?
Then you're probably not an official member of the
National Audubon Society.
You can join for $20 annually through CKAS (& help support CKAS by doing so) by following the instructions and link on the CKAS web page. Choosing Central Kentucky Audubon #J51 as your chapter of choice returns your first year's dues directly to the chapter so we can do that much more to help local birds.
524 Rosemont Garden | Lexington KY 40503
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