Audubon de México

Hooray for Trees!

NATIVE TREES NEED OUR HELP

June 1, 2021

It is not possible to overstate the value of a tree.  When they breathes out, it helps us breathe in.  Their canopies shade us from the sun and provide sancturary during rainstorms.  Their roots hold soil in place and provide nutrients to the soil.  Their leaves, fruit and seeds are a source of food and medicine for people and animals.  Their strong branches support nests and roosts for animals on the hunt or needing a rest.  Their different shapes, sizes, textures and vibrant colors contribute beauty to the landscape and you probably won’t be surprised to know that being around trees can actually chase our blues away.

What’s more, trees are one of our best natural defenses against climate change, desertification and the water scarcity challenges that are hurtling toward us.

For all of these reasons, and for the sake of the trees themselves, Audubon de Mexico is launching a new Adopt a Tree program to save our native Mesquite and Huizaches that are under attack from an epidemic of Paxtle, commonly known as la Plaga.  Paxtle, is a plant that survives on air, but uses trees (and other surfaces) as a structure to live upon.  Our native trees are particularly vulnerable to Paxtle, and in small quantities it causes no harm.  But, in this moment thousands of native trees in San Miguel are covered with large colonies of Paxtle, which blocks the sunlight these trees need to produce food, leaves and seeds; causing the trees to weaken, limiting their ability to reproduce and, eventually, leading to their early death.

TOGETHER WE CAN SAVE OUR TREES

Our strategy is to save and protect our existing native trees in public open spaces and local parks.  At Parque Landeta and “the Peninsula.” located near our boathouse at the Presa Allende, we have identified nearly 1500 trees requiring immediate attention.

Volunteer to clean trees  

Join in at any or all of our Adopt-a-Tree communty events, and bring your family and your friends!  You will find this to be a very rewarding and enjoyable experience.

Become an Audubon member  

Donate to our cause to save trees and preserve the nature of San Miguel through an annual Audubon membership contribution or make a monthly donation to help us sustain this program and the work of Audubon for years to come.  We need to purchase more tree-cleaning equipment and hire professionals to clean the tallest (and oldest) trees. 

Your membership contribution will also help to fund other valuable Audubon programs, including Niños y Naturaleza and our pollinator habitat garden projects.

tree cleaning feb 2021
February, 2021 ↑

CLEANING TREES WORKS!             

To test the value and process of cleaning trees, in February 2021 we led a clean-up supported by thirty volunteers.  With an engaged, responsive volunteer crew, pruners and step-ladders we were able to remove by hand and pruning the Paxtle infestations in 30 trees in just one day. The results of this effort were impressive.  When we returned to the site six weeks later, we found that the cleaned trees, which in February were lacking leaves, had fully burst into leaf.

In May, associates of local real estate company Keller Williams partnered with Audubon for their annual Red Day community volunteerism event, resulting in an additional 37 trees cleaned.

April, 2021 – Clean, healthy and in full leaf!  ↓

tree cleaning feb 2021

TREE CLEANING – WHAT’S INVOLVED?

At this time of year, we are removing the Paxtle by hand and pruning the dead branches.  We work in teams, with four or five people cleaning the larger trees.  Two people can easily manage the smaller trees.   We also have a ground crew that sweeps up the Paxtle and puts it into a bag ad moves the branches into piles to keep the work areas clean and to prevent the Paxtle seeds from spreading.

Most trees are between 8-15 feet tall.  Some people love working on the ladders, others may prefer to clean the branches that are lower to the ground.

Audubon will provide gloves, ladders, pruning saws and training in tree pruning.  And thanks to the support of local real estate agency, Keller Williams, we have a supply of leather sleeves to protect your arms from scratches.  We have you covered!

Where there is water, there is life.

September 26, 2020

Despite our historically low level of water in the Presa Allende, the good news is that kayakers are still able to enjoy time on the water and birds are continuing to find it a haven.

On a recent outing, kayakers spotted over 150 American White Pelicans, a dozen Roseate Spoonbills, five Great Blue Heron, a Woodstork, Egrets and a lone brown pelican.  Brown pelicans are shore birds, that dive straight into the ocean, from as high as 60 feet in the air, to catch their prey.  We hope she will soon find her way to whichever coast she was heading to or be able to adapt to the shallow depths of the Presa.

Given our drought conditions, we don’t know how long these birds will be able to find the Presa a suitable habitat.  Unlike birds, we cannot easily fly off in search of better conditions elsewhere – our resiliency comes from our ability to adapt to changing conditions by taking care of our water and land, and modifying our behaviors and mindsets, so that people and wildlife continue to thrive.

Roseate Spoonbills do not show up on range maps as being residents of our area, yet we often see them on the Presa when the water level provides the feeding habitat they require. They wade in very shallow waters and swish their long spoon-shaped bills back and forth in the water, hunting for aquatic insects, small fish and crustaceans. When not feeding, we see them in adjacent trees, most especially along the Rio Laja during years when there is a lot of water held in the Presa and the riparian trees are partially submerged.

American White Pelicans, one of the largest birds in North America, have established a fairly stable population of 150-200 birds in the Presa over the past few years.  They feed in shallow lakes and wetlands.  Although range maps do not show San Miguel as a year-around habitat for AWPs, we believe that most of these birds do not migrate to northern breeding areas.

gardening for wildlife

Attract Wildlife to your Garden

Information about plants, planting, resources and other good things to know about making your garden wildlife friendly.

Read more >>

Watch Ecologist Amanda Schnochet

An inspiring Ted Talk about how Amanda found a glimmer hope for the future by studying how bumble bees survive by navigating small urban land patches… and learned that even one passionate gardener can make a positive impact.

Watch >>

ninos y naturaleza program

Taking our students outdoors where nature lives, to learn and to engage them in experiences that change their perspective of the world around them.  We hope to get back to this work when it is safe to do so. We are READY and EXCITED  to be with our students again and have made contingency plans for hosting small groups outdoors when (again) it is safe to do so.

VITAMIN N.  Kids who have made positive connections with Nature are happier and healthier and more empathic, mindful and empowered to shape their future. They do better in school, too!

Mexican study shows that children who grow up feeling close to nature are happier and more likely to care for the planet than those who suffer from ‘nature deficit disorder’.  Read all about it.

 

Please watch “The Beginning of Life,”  which explores how connections with nature can help us tackle the greatest challenges facing humanity today and help us lead healthier and more satisfying lives.  Watch now

fun & adventure

All Audubon events are postponed until we can safely be together.

BirdWalks

Take a walk on the wild side!
Audubon BirdWalk  Sunday, March 15

DETAILS >>

water outings

Join Amigos de la Presa volunteers for kayak outings and other water adventures on the Presa Allende several times per month.

MONTHLY SCHEDULE

Join us on a future Wild Food Adventure to visit local producers and learn about their craft or enjoy a meal in special settings featuring local foods, chefs and presentations on various topics centered on healthy, sustainable foods.  Proceeds from our Wild Food Adventures support our school garden programs.

Where there is water, there is life.

September 26, 2020

Despite our historically low level of water in the Presa Allende, the good news is that kayakers are still able to enjoy time on the water and birds are continuing to find it a haven.

On a recent outing, kayakers spotted over 150 American White Pelicans, a dozen Roseate Spoonbills, five Great Blue Heron, a Woodstork, Egrets and a lone brown pelican.  Brown pelicans are shore birds, that dive straight into the ocean, from as high as 60 feet in the air, to catch their prey.  We hope she will soon find her way to whichever coast she was heading to or be able to adapt to the shallow depths of the Presa.

Given our drought conditions, we don’t know how long these birds will be able to find the Presa a suitable habitat.  Unlike birds, we cannot easily fly off in search of better conditions elsewhere – our resiliency comes from our ability to adapt to changing conditions by taking care of our water and land, and modifying our behaviors and mindsets, so that people and wildlife continue to thrive.

American White Pelicans, one of the largest birds in North America, have established a fairly stable population of 150-200 birds in the Presa over the past few years.  They feed in shallow lakes and wetlands.  Although range maps do not show San Miguel as a year-around habitat for AWPs, we believe that most of these birds do not migrate to northern breeding areas.

Roseate Spoonbills do not show up on range maps as being residents of our area, yet we often see them on the Presa when the water level provides the feeding habitat they require. They wade in very shallow waters and swish their long spoon-shaped bills back and forth in the water, hunting for aquatic insects, small fish and crustaceans. When not feeding, we see them in adjacent trees, most especially along the Rio Laja during years when there is a lot of water held in the Presa and the riparian trees are partially submerged.

gardening for wildlife

Attract Wildlife to your Garden

Information about plants, planting, resources and other good things to know about making your garden wildlife friendly.

Read more >>

Watch Ecologist Amanda Schnochet

An inspiring Ted Talk about how Amanda found a glimmer hope for the future by studying how bumble bees survive by navigating small urban land patches… and learned that even one passionate gardener can make a positive impact.

Watch >>

ninos y naturaleza program

Taking our students outdoors where nature lives, to learn and to engage them in experiences that change their perspective of the world around them.  We hope to get back to this work when it is safe to do so. We are READY and EXCITED  to be with our students again and have made contingency plans for hosting small groups outdoors when (again) it is safe to do so.

VITAMIN N.  Kids who have made positive connections with Nature are happier and healthier and more empathic, mindful and empowered to shape their future. They do better in school, too!

Mexican study shows that children who grow up feeling close to nature are happier and more likely to care for the planet than those who suffer from ‘nature deficit disorder’.  Read all about it.

 

Please watch “The Beginning of Life,”  which explores how connections with nature can help us tackle the greatest challenges facing humanity today and help us lead healthier and more satisfying lives.  Watch now

fun & adventure

All Audubon events are postponed until we can safely be together.

BirdWalks

Take a walk on the wild side!
Audubon BirdWalk  Sunday, March 15

DETAILS >>

water outings

Join Amigos de la Presa volunteers for kayak outings and other water adventures on the Presa Allende several times per month.

MONTHLY SCHEDULE

Join us on a future Wild Food Adventure to visit local producers and learn about their craft or enjoy a meal in special settings featuring local foods, chefs and presentations on various topics centered on healthy, sustainable foods.  Proceeds from our Wild Food Adventures support our school garden programs.

Great Backyard Bird Count Results!

Audubon de Mexico has been participating in the Great Backyard Bird Count each February since 2012.  This year our group counted along a stretch of the Rio Laja near Cieneguita.  650 birds and 52 species were counted, including the most diverse array of raptors we have ever recorded in one location.  A fun day with a great group of people under clear blue skies. 

Thanks to everyone who came out to count!

Take a gander at this ebird article about the impact of counting birds for science and conservation.

 

 

Go Wild over Audubon’s Local Food Adventures

We are having so much fun with our Wild Food Adventures! 

July’s Summer Harvest Feast took place within the beautiful setting of Casa Adela, located near Atotonilco.  Our SilvestreWild team of chefs created a spectacular meal for guests to savor and remember, with most elements roasted or grilled over an open fire.  Early in the day, Chef Mariano Alvarez, a master at gaucho style, Argentine open fire cooking, built the fire and set out his grills and pans in preparation of the arrival of rest of the team: chefs Donnie Masterton, Greta Ortega and JJ Castaneda.  Each chef prepared two dishes using their skills and fire to bring out the fullest flavors of the ingredients.  The results were amazing. Also amazing was the welcome cocktail made with Santo Cuviso’s sublime Bacanora Blanco served with the juice of freshly harvested tuna over ice, a recipe created by Chef Donnie Masterton. 

On June 11th we ventured to  Finca Luna Serena farm for an Olive Fest, which included an informative talk about olives and olive oils, followed by an olive oil tasting and an incredible buffet dinner featuring some form of olives in each and every dish.   Many thanks to Finca Luna Serena owners, Victor Guttierez and Susan Chamberlin for their hospitality.

In April we launched our Wild Food Adventure series at recently opened Fatima 7 roof top restaurant located within the Casa Blanca Hotel.  Many thanks to Chef JJ Castaneda and Chef/owner Donnie Masterton for sumptuous food enjoyed on the fabulous roof-top setting.  Thank you also to Vinedo San Miguel for the incredible selection of scrumptious wines.

Go Wild for Art & Nature!

THANK YOU to our artists, members and patrons for making the 2019 Wild Arts Festival a great success!

Meet the artists and see their work from the 2019 Wild Arts Festival>>

Contact Us

 

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