INTERPRETING NATURE

Growth and Reflection in Joshua Tree National Park

Growth and Reflection in Joshua Tree National Park

On December 31, 2018 to January 4, 2019 eight Los Angeles Audubon staff and program alumni received the opportunity to participate in a backpacking trip with Outward Bound California in the Joshua Tree National Park backcountry. Both Outward Bound California and Los Angeles Audubon worked together to grant scholarships to all participants. Some of the scholarship recipients were part of the Baldwin Hills Parklands Conservation Certificate Program and others were alumni of the Baldwin Hills Greenhouse Program. Five of the participants that were part of the Baldwin Hills Parklands Certificate Program were Jamie, Racine, Alex, Felistus, Edgar, and Maya. The remaining two, Ingrid and Behtsabe, were Greenhouse Program Alumna. Almost all of us were new to backpacking. Edgar Pedroza and Ingrid Carrillo are currently Los Angeles Audubon staff members and they are also the writers of this reflection. They share their story in the style of a journal where they express their experience through both perspectives.

Western Tanager, Vol. 83 No. 6, Jul–Aug 2017

ON THE COVER  ‘I’iwi | Hakalau Forest Wildlife Refuge, Photo by Jack Jeffrey  Found nowhere else in the world, the spectacular scarlet‐feathered I’iwi  (Drepanis coccinea)  is the last of the sickle‐billed Hawaiian honeycreepers. Before the appearance of humans in Hawaii, more than fifty different honeycreeper species were known to have existed. Today, only 18 species remain, most of these are endangered or threatened. I’iwi feathers were once collected by early Hawaiian bird catchers or “kia manu”, and used for the feathered cloaks of Hawaiian Royalty. I’iwi are still fairly abundant in the remaining high elevation native koa‐ohia forests of Hawaii Island and Maui, but rare on the other major islands. The long down‐curved bill of the I’iwi is a perfect match for the shape of tubular flowers of many native plants, making I’iwi important pollinators of these and other native plants. To see an I’iwi, or to hear its loud “rusty hinge” call is an extraordinary experience and one that can only be had in a Hawaiian rainforest.

ON THE COVER

‘I’iwi | Hakalau Forest Wildlife Refuge, Photo by Jack Jeffrey

Found nowhere else in the world, the spectacular scarlet‐feathered I’iwi (Drepanis coccinea) is the last of the sickle‐billed Hawaiian honeycreepers. Before the appearance of humans in Hawaii, more than fifty different honeycreeper species were known to have existed. Today, only 18 species remain, most of these are endangered or threatened. I’iwi feathers were once collected by early Hawaiian bird catchers or “kia manu”, and used for the feathered cloaks of Hawaiian Royalty. I’iwi are still fairly abundant in the remaining high elevation native koa‐ohia forests of Hawaii Island and Maui, but rare on the other major islands. The long down‐curved bill of the I’iwi is a perfect match for the shape of tubular flowers of many native plants, making I’iwi important pollinators of these and other native plants. To see an I’iwi, or to hear its loud “rusty hinge” call is an extraordinary experience and one that can only be had in a Hawaiian rainforest.

In this issue

• YOUNG BIRDERS: Birds of the Hakalau Forest on the Big Island of Hawai’i, By Dessi Sieburth

• INTERPRETING NATURE: Does nature have a place in the English Language Arts classroom?, By Robert Jeffers, L.A. Audubon Treasurer | Instructional Coach

• Princeton Phainopepla Project, Please send your sightings to Dr. Daniel Baldassarre, Princeton University

• Birds of the Season—June 2017, By Jon Fisher

• OPINION: Every Creature on Earth is Under Threat, By Louis Tucker, LAAS Member and Field Trip Leader

• A Tribute to Judy Raskin, By Brad Rumble, LAAS Director at Large

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Western Tanager, Vol. 83 No. 5, May–June 2017

On The Cover:  Brown-eyed Primrose | Photo by Read Howarth   About the Photographer:  Read Howarth is a disability insurance broker who lives in Los Angeles County. He moved here in 2009 from New Jersey. His then moderate lifelong interest in birding was given a jolt with his observation of a Surf Scoter in Marina Del Rey, while sailing. His first Audubon Field Trip was three years ago, on a Kurt Leuschner led trip to Anza-Borrego. It was to become the first of many Audubon walks and field trips since. Birding, sailing and volunteering as a Docent in Topanga State Park keep him out in nature and provide springboards for more educational opportunities in the natural sciences.

On The Cover: Brown-eyed Primrose | Photo by Read Howarth

About the Photographer: Read Howarth is a disability insurance broker who lives in Los Angeles County. He moved here in 2009 from New Jersey. His then moderate lifelong interest in birding was given a jolt with his observation of a Surf Scoter in Marina Del Rey, while sailing. His first Audubon Field Trip was three years ago, on a Kurt Leuschner led trip to Anza-Borrego. It was to become the first of many Audubon walks and field trips since. Birding, sailing and volunteering as a Docent in Topanga State Park keep him out in nature and provide springboards for more educational opportunities in the natural sciences.

In this issue

• L.A. Audubon's Anza-Borrego Field Trip March 2017, By Read Howarth, LAAS Member and Field Trip Participant, Photos by Read Howarth

• Birds and Other Wildlife seen on Anza-Borrego Field TripBy Kurt Leuschner, LAAS Member and Field Trip Leader | KLeuschner@collegeofthedesert.edu

• SCHREIBER GRANT UPDATE: The role of behavior in isolation: novelty and courtship across a hummingbird hybrid zone | By Brian Myers, Grant Recipient 2015

• INTERPRETING NATURE: From L.A. to Joshua Tree: Opportunities and Experiences in Nature, By Robert Jeffers, L.A. Audubon Board Member and Joshua Tree Adventure Chaperone, Spring Break 2017

• We Wish You a Merry Christmas: An Adventure, By Louis Tucker, Los Angeles Audubon Society Member and Field Trip Leader

• YOUNG BIRDERS: The Red-crowned Parrot, By Dessi Sieburth

• Birds of the Season — April 2017, By Jon Fisher

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