March Newsletter and Events Are Now Online!
Join us for our next NCAS membership meeting.
The Vancouver Avian Research Centre Bird Monitoring and Banding Program with Derek Matthews. The Vancouver Avian Research Centre (VARC) is a non-profit dedicated to wild bird research, conservation and education. VARC conducts bird monitoring, banding and research to identify causes of avian population change, and provides workshops, presentations, volunteer opportunities, and visitor programs at its Colony Farm field station. Derek Matthew, Chair of VARC, will delight us with a discussion of VARC’s objectives in providing data and research that help safeguard bird habitats and their long-term survival by providing scientifically defensible strategies for avian and ecosystem conservation. Habitat loss and degradation is the major cause of bird population declines and is the single largest factor affecting migratory birds crossing increasingly fragmented landscapes. This is particularly relevant in urban areas like Vancouver. Starting in 2009, VARC has conducted a comprehensive monitoring program within Colony Farm Regional Park to assess the importance of this regionally unique ecosystem. VARC data has provided invaluable information to MetroVancouver on the importance of Colony Farm as a stopover site for migratory birds and as a breeding area. This information is being used to help guide the development of best management practices to integrate wildlife conservation with recreation in the park. Other components of VARC’s mandate include public outreach and education to raise awareness of environmental issues particularly as they relate to birds, and providing research and volunteer opportunities for students and the public.Derek Matthews was born in England and developed a very early interest in birds, joining a local birding group as a young teenager. A passionate ornithologist, avian researcher and conservationist, Derek is the Chair of the VARC, a master bird bander, and a North American Banding Council Certified Trainer. He also leads field trips and bird tours and hosts Bird Monitoring and Banding and Bird Identification workshops. He has traveled extensively birding throughout the world. Derek enjoys sharing his knowledge and enthusiasm for birds and the environment with others, and is known as an entertaining educator and charismatic speaker. Derek currently lives in North Vancouver, BC.Always on the fourth Tuesday of the month:March 26 at 7pmin the Whatcom Museum, Rotunda Room free & open to the public!