Welcome to the Black Canyon Audubon Society
Black Canyon Audubon Society was formed in 1990 and is one of 11 National Audubon Society chapters in Colorado. The BCAS is committed to the conservation of natural resources through our birding, conservation, and educational activities. The region covered by the Black Canyon Audubon society encompasses nearly 8,300 square miles and includes Delta, Gunnison, Hinsdale, Montrose, San Miguel and Ouray counties. Within this region, elevations vary from 4,695 to 14,309 feet above sea level. Rainfall ranges from less than 8 inches per year in the lower valleys to more than 50 on the higher peaks. Vegetation varies from desert scrub to boreal forest and alpine tundra.
Crane Days Cancelled - See below for more information and tips for viewing cranes
- To promote the conservation of natural resources through informative public programs, our newsletter and this web site.
- To provide the opportunity for the observation and study of birds and other wildlife, through our field trips.
- To offer early education programs including bird banding stations and classroom bird skin programs.
- To empower our members and the public with the knowledge to be effective environmental advocates.
- To contribute to the recovery of the Gunnison Sage Grouse (GUSG) through joint efforts with GUSG working groups and federal and state agencies.
We were deeply saddened by the news of the deaths of Julie and Richard Duncan, who many knew as neighbors in Cobble Creek in Montrose. Both were lovers of the outdoors and wildlife. Julie, in particular, was a participant on BCAS field trips and was a lover of birds. We would like to recognize contributions made to the BCAS in the memory of Julie and Richard. We will put the donations to good use in our outreach and education programs. Thank you very much to:
Sue and Bill Hirschman Stan Braithwaite and Keena Unruh Kathi Poulos
Irene Reed Tessia Smith Christine Cummins Kathleen Griffin
Richard Gleichauf Lorie Lail Elizabeth Wilder Diego and Kayla Casillas
Click Below for the Current Issue of the
Canceled - Flocks and Rocks: The Amazing Story of Sandhill Cranes and Fruitgrowers Reservoir - Canceled
Canceled Thursday March 19, 6:00 p.m. David Noe is an engaging speaker with a great story to tell about Sandhill Cranes in our area. David Noe's presentation is co-sponsored by the Grand Mesa Arts and Events Center, Delta County Libraries, and Black Canyon Audubon Society. This is a family and child friendly event that is the prelude to Eckert Crane Days Friday March 20-Sunday March 22 at Fruitgrowers Reservoir. Join us at the Grand Mesa Arts and Events Center, 195 W Main St. Cedaredge, A $10 suggested donation would be greatly appreciated. Call (970) 856-9195 for more information.
Upcoming Field Trips:
First Tuesday Birding Trips
Cancelled! Eckert Crane Days Cancelled!
Crane Days has been Cancelled Friday-Sunday, March 20-22, 9 a.m.- 11:00 or so each day. Our annual Eckert Crane Days has been cancelled in order to prevent an aggregation of people at this time of contagion. The cranes will still be using Fruitgrowers Reservoir on their northward migration, so you can still see them on your own. We will not have an organized BCAS presence, however. The cranes do not have calendars, so you can expect cranes to be using Fruitgrowers Reservoir over the next few weeks - weekends and weekdays through the first part of April.
Here are some tips for viewing cranes at the reservoir:
The cranes have begun their journey northward. They arrive each evening, when weather is favorable, about 3:30 in the afternoon. They usually fly in high and can be heard from quite a distance before settling in. They often land on the north side of the causeway, so viewing them from the causeway or from the parking area just west of the causeway on their arrival can be spectacular. If you park along the causeway, please make sure your vehicle is entirely off of the road. Local traffic along the road often moves very fast, so please do not stand in the roadway and be very careful of oncoming traffic if you cross the road.
After arrival, the cranes often resettle themselsves to the fields on the western side of the reservoir. They are often in the fields far to the south and can be difficult to see without binoculars or a spotting scope. The best place to see them if they are west of the reservoir is at Crane Point, which is a small pullout with an informational sign and picnic table on the curve of the road on the hill west of the reservoir. This has limited parking, so please take care not to block the road leading westward from the pull out, as it is used by the farm you are overlooking. Also, do not pass beyond the fence adjacent to the pull out, as it is private land and you do not have permission to be there. The farmer who owns the land is very friendly and glad to have you view the cranes from Crane Point, but please do not enter his land.
The cranes typically leave the following morning between 10:00 and 11:00. If the cranes are in the fields west of the reservoir, Crane Point can be a very good vantage point. The cranes typically lift off in groups, cueing on the lift offs of nearby cranes, so can be spectacular as they circle and leave the area to fly over Grand Mesa to the north. Because they circle around, they often fly over the causeway and the parking area to the east on the northern side of the reservoir. Again, please be aware of traffic on North Road and do not impede it by parking in the roadway, be careful not to wander into the road when distracted by the cranes, and take care if you feel the need to cross the road.
Birdwatching can be an activity that can be practiced safely in this time of worry of infection from the Corona Virus. Please give your fellow birders space - 6 feet is recommended - so that you do not inadvertently infect one another. If you share a spotting scope or other items, such as binoculars or bird guides, please use disinfectant wipes between uses. Common sense and respect for personal space is key. You can still talk to one another and exult in the spectacle of the cranes and other birds, but have self awareness so that you do not get run over, do not impede traffic, do not trespass, and do not come uncomfortably close to others who may be concerned with contracting the virus.
Ridgway State Park Field Trip
West End Field Trip
Billy Creek Wildlife Area Field Trip
Leucistic Red-tailed Hawk near Solar Road south of Montrose. Photo taken by Robin Lewis on March 26, 2019.
BCAS Donations Through AmazonSmile.com
Although we encourage everyone to shop locally, in the event that you choose to make a purchase through Amazon, please do so by way of AmazonSmile.com and select the Black Canyon Audubon Society as the organization that a percentage of your eligible Amazon purchases will be sent automatically as a charitable contribution. Purchases must be made by going to AmazonSmile for this to take place. Anyone can support the Black Canyon Audubon Society by choosing us as your designated AmazonSmile.com non-profit organization by clicking the link below: