CONTENTS:  Events & Programs From the Editor Notes & Announcements •  Gilbert's Feathered Friends FestivalLet's be "Friends"   •  Photo Quiz Conservation - Southwestern Willow Flycatcher at the Crossroads •  Classified Ad Catering to the Neighbors AZ Special Species - Three-toed Woodpecker •  Photo Quiz Answers •  Field Trips   • Receipts & Expenditures for the Fiscal Year Ending 5/31/02 • Field Observations

Black-capped Gnatcatcher 
photographed by Jim Burns at Patagonia Lake State Park in Arizona in January, 2003 with Canon EOS 1V body, Canon 400mm f/2.8 lens and Fujichrome Velvia film.



Meetings are held the first Tuesday of each month, September-April, at the Phoenix Zoo Auditorium.  Meetings start at 7:30, and feature a speaker, book sales, refreshments, and a chance to socialize with fellow MAS members.  Non-members welcome!

Join us for a pre-meeting dinner at Pete's 19th Tee, 1405 N Mill Avenue, Tempe (at the Rolling Hills Golf Course) starting at 6:00 p.m.  Except for the September meeting which will be our annual potluck starting at 6:30.  Each attendee is invited to bring a platter of his or her favorite h'ors de oeuvres, sufficiently large enough to serve at least six people.  We'll provide the eating utensils, the plates, and the drinks, bring a friend and enjoy swapping birding stories.  The regular meeting will begin at 7:30

Join us for a season of dynamic speakers and captivating topics!  Visit Iceland, Alaska, Peru, Mexico and Arizona to see our favorite creatures and their associated environments.  Learn to identify birds in the field by their sounds, get close-up and personal with digital photography, view habitat restoration along the Santa Cruz River, experience Arizona’s sky island ecosystems and discover major conservation efforts throughout the state.  Wow!  And if that isn’t enough to whet your interest, our banquet speaker for May 2004 is Kenn Kaufman!

To conserve space, only a short list of our speakers and topics is included in this edition of the newsletter.  A summary of each speaker’s topic will be available on our web site ( and in the next Wren·dition.  Have a safe and birdy summer – we’ll see you all next September!


September 2003 through May 2004


September 2, 03: David Reesor  "Birds of Iceland."

October 7 , 03: David and Jen MacKay  "Birds and Natural History of Northwestern Mexico"

4, 03:  Kathy Groschupf  "Identifying Bird Sounds in the Field."

December 2, 03: Gary Rosenberg  "Digital Photography Through a Telescope:  A Tour Leader's Travels from Alaska to Peru."

January 6, 04:  Ann Phillips and Kendall Droesen 


"Along the Santa Cruz River:  Its Birds and Reconstruction Efforts"

February 3, 04:  Peter Friederici "Those Exotic, Thick-billed Parrots of the Sierra Madre"

March 2
, 04:  Bob Witzeman "Sky Islands of Arizona:  Their Life Zones and Birds"

April 6, 04:  Pat Graham " The Nature Conservancy in Arizona:  Past, Present and Future"

May 4, 03:  Kenn Kaufman ????? (Stay Tuned!)

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By Deva Burns

"A man could be a lover and defender of the wilderness without ever in his lifetime leaving the boundaries of asphalt, powerlines, and right-angled surfaces.  We need wilderness whether or not we ever set foot in it.  We need a refuge even though we may never need to go there."   -   Edward Abbey

Continuing urban sprawl, inadequate groundwater laws, restrictive state trust grazing leases, state park closures, seemingly interminable attempts to raid the Heritage Fund.  These are a few of the issues that effect the state of conservation in Arizona.  But you shrug your shoulders thinking, "What can I do?"  Well, you can start by participating in elections.  As a non-profit 501C-3 organization, we cannot endorse candidates, but we can encourage you to get involved.  Register to vote if you haven't already (deadline August 12th).  You can download forms from the secretary of State's website (  ). Get to know the candidates in your district, contribute $5 to their clean elections campaign (deadline August 22nd).  Vote in the primary Sept. 10th (early voting begins August 8th) and the general election Nov. 5th (early voting begins Oct. 3rd).  You can request an early ballot from the county recorder 602.506-3535 and vote from home.  Vote in the primary Sept. 10th and the general election Nov 5th.  Several useful sites include the non-partisan Arizona League of Conservation Voters for the 2002 Arizona Legislative Scorecard.  Also, the Grand Canyon Chapter of the Sierra Club has a comprehensive guide to the 2002 legislative session and scorecard on your representatives

On the ballot is a legislative sponsored initiative involving land exchanges of state trust lands.  The legislature has tried to amend  the constitution through ballot measures to allow state land swaps four times since 1990 and four times the public saw the inadequacy of those measures and rejected them.  Amending the constitution requires a proposition that limits three-way land swaps which usually favor developers, that allows for greater public review and a complete environmental impact analysis.  MAS opposes this initiative.

Another way to get involved, from the comfort of your home, is by subscribing to the Audubon Activist Alert.  You will receive late breaking alerts requesting that you contact your representatives concerning environmental legislation.  Call Shawn Baur at 602.828.3607 or email  Thank you, Shawn, for your diligence on the many important local as well as national issues that effect our environment.

I look forward to serving you as President of Maricopa Audubon Society.  Have a good summer and I hope to see you at the September potluck.  Please feel free to contact me or anyone on the board with suggestions. comments, articles fro the newsletter, program ideas or volunteering opportunities.

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Activist Alert: 
Shawn Bauer 
Arizona Audubon 
Council Rep:

Herb Fibel 
Audubon Phone
Book Store
Field Observations
Janet Witzeman
Web Page
Michell Fulton
Maricopa Audubon Web Site 

Maricopa Audubon Society is a  non-profit, tax exempt, 501(c)(3) organization.  In 2003, we celebrate 50 years of enjoying birds and protecting the habitat on which they depend.


Bequests are an important source of support for the Maricopa Audubon Society.  Your chapter has dedicated itself to the protection of natural world through public education and advocacy for the wiser use and preservation of our land, water, air and other irreplaceable natural resources.

You can invest in the future of our natural world by making a bequest in your will to the Maricopa Audubon Society .  Talk to your attorney for more information on how this can be accomplished.




Birdathon:  Don't forget to turn in your pledges to our treasurer, Herb Fibel, 1128 E. Geneva, Tempe, 85282.  Pledge forms can be picked up at the monthly meetings, downloaded from our web site, or mailed by request.  Pledges must be received by May 14th to be eligible for prizes will be awarded in May for various categories including the most species seen, the best bird seen, most lifers seen, most money raised by an individual or a team, most hours spent birding, etc.  See last month's Wrendition for a list. 

The Birdseye Guide to 101 Birding Sites, Phoenix -A new guide published by Rupp Aerial Photography.  The maps are excellent, it is all in color and is $23.95  For more information check  

ABA Annual Convention  June 2-8, 2003, in Eugene, Oregon.  Call the ABA or check their website for more information.

More birding and nature festivals. 

Audubon Adventures:  Give the gift of discovery and share your love of the environment.  The program is designated for students in grades 4-6.  Introduce an entire classroom (up to 32 students) to the wonders of nature for just $35 (plus shipping charges).  You can select your favorite school or let Audubon do it for you.  For orders:  call 800/813-5037.


Maricopa Audubon T-Shirts are available for sale at member meetings or by mail. They feature a Barn Owl primary flight feather overshadowing the common and Latin names of birds found in Maricopa County. Long-sleeved shirts are available in Charcoal, Med, Large or XL, for $20.00. Add $4.00 shipping and handling for the first shirt, $1.50 for each additional shirt. Please allow 3 weeks for delivery. Make checks out to: Maricopa Audubon Society, 1128 E Geneva Dr., Tempe, AZ 85282. For info, contact Laurie Nessel at (480) 968-5614 or


Do you have an interesting story to tell about birding?  Please forward your submissions to the Editor—Deva Burns.  Check the back page for address/e-mail.  Actually, attaching an article to an e-mail is the absolute easiest way to submit an article.  If you have pictures or slides, you do need to send those to me directly.  Remember, all articles may not be published the first month after receipt.


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Gilbert's Feathered Friends Festival
By Laurie Nessel

Members of Maricopa Audubon Society volunteered at the third annual Feather Friends Festival at the Gilbert Riparian Preserve at Water Ranch on March 29th.  Of all the venues for table events, this is one of the most pleasant.  The MAS table overlooked one of the recharge ponds.  We had excellent views of a Snipe in the morning.  Volunteers lead bird walks for adults and scouts.  The best part for me was watching the utter surprise of a woman strolling the path when she happened to notice one of the Burrowing owls that have been relocated by Greg Clark to several burrows just feet from the paths at the Water Ranch.  Thank you, volunteers, who stayed the entire event and brought their own scopes to share with the visitors?  Don and Gloria Traicoff, Ann Peyton and Craig Fischer, Marjorie Eckman, Ginny Horlitz, Marceline DeWater, Bob Witzeman, Mike Rupp, Andrea Nesbitt and Theona Vivial.  And a special thanks to Mike Rupp who donated 20% of the proceeds from sales of his "Birds-Eye Guide to 101 Birding Sites" and to Janet Witzeman who donated the proceeds of the sale of her "Birds of Phoenix and Maricopa County".


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Let's Be "Friends"
By Herb Fibel

For those of you who did not receive the last Wren-didtion, you need to know that this will be the last Wren-dition you will ever receive in the mail, unless and until you become a "Friend of Maricopa Audubon".  The short explanation is that in the near future National Audubon will no longer share a portion of you national membership dues (the funds we used to use to finance the publication and mailing of your Cactus Wren-didtion).  If you wish to receive future issues of the Wren0didtion, you must become a "Friend".  You can do so by sending a check payable to Maricopa Audubon Society for $20 or more to Herb Fibel, Treasurer, 1128 E. Geneva Dr., Tempe, AZ  85282.  Doing so will assure that you receive future issues of the Cactus Wren-dition through May of 2004.

If you did receive the last previous newsletter, and still haven't sent in your "Friends" check, be aware that this will be the last issue of the Cactus Wren-dition that you will receive.

As of this writing (April 3, 2003) MAS has made 113 new "friends".  In addition, we've 'grandfatered' in 24 other people who will receive future issues of the Wren-dition, but only through December 31, 2003.  They only exception to this rule is our 'comps' (such as libraries, and other Audubon affiliates).

113 out of 2,100 is just a little more than 5% of our nationally assigned membership, but I must tell you that the positive comments about what we're trying to do and about the Wren-dition that accompanied your checks have been most gratifying.

If you have not already done so, please consider becoming a "Friend of Maricopa Audubon".  "Friends will receive discounts on merchandise sold by the chapter at meetings, free raffle tickets, and a 10 percent discount on the price of our annual banquet.

We hope to hear soon from each of you out there.



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Last updated: June 4, 03
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