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Funders, Skippers, Staff

The Sonoma Valley Kites, a youth team that counted for the first time in our 2009 Bird-A-Thon, were among those honored at PRBO's awards event in late January. The Kites—Stephen Montano, Cristofer Goodman, Helena Goodman, Sean McElroy and Edward Sarti, ages 8 to 14—saw 64 species on their Bird-A-Thon. Pictured here, some team members accept recognition and field guides as prizes. Photo by Annie Schmidt.
Bird-A-Thon Update

Results from our big birding extravaganza and fundraiser in 2009, the PRBO Bird-A-Thon, have been exciting indeed. More than 170 counters took to the field last September–October in their 24-hour quests for birds, backed by sponsors' pledges. As of late January 2010, proceeds topped $110,000—funding that enables PRBO to carry out independent research and outreach programs. We thank and congratulate all 2009 Bird-A-Thon participants!

Some 125 people attended the Bird-A-Thon celebration at PRBO's headquarters on January 23rd, with prizes, live music, beautiful bird art, and more.

Watch for future announcements of PRBO's Bird-A-Thon in 2010!

Foundation Support

PRBO thanks our foundation supporters who have made recent contributions.

The David and Lucile Packard Foundation renewed their generous support for our six-year effort studying and tracking the migration patterns of curlews and godwits throughout the Pacific Basin.

We are grateful for a grant from the Lenfest Ocean Program to provide the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources with scientific information for evaluating proposals to ban or significantly reduce the fishery for Antarctic toothfish in Antarctica's Ross Sea.

Resources Legacy Fund provided funding for PRBO to increase the ecological benefits of forest and meadow conservation efforts in the Sierra Nevada.

We thank the Energy Foundation for a grant to identify and prioritize areas of conservation importance in California's deserts, as part of an effort to guide the location of solar installations and minimize their impacts on wildlife.

We are appreciative of the Dorothy and Jonathan Rintels Charitable Trust and The Libra Foundation for supporting our efforts to guide tidal-marsh restoration and management in San Francisco Bay and to develop computerized maps of wetland habitats.

PRBO's long-term ecological monitoring and protection of Farallon Island seabirds, marine mammals, and white sharks, in cooperation with U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, received support for which we are grateful from the Elinor Patterson Baker Trust, the Marisla Foundation, and the Frank A. Campini Foundation.

We are grateful to the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation for their general-support gifts.

These are among the many foundations supporting PRBO's programs.

Farallon Patrol Log

The Farallon Patrol provides the essential link to the mainland for our Farallon Island field station. Although our customary landing site is out of commission for now, Patrol skippers, well versed in the unpredictability of ocean travel, have adapted readily.

This winter, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service removed the aging crane from East Landing and dismantled it for repair on the mainland. Our alternate access to the island, North Landing, is much more exposed to ocean swells and cannot be used at low tides. Patrol skippers haven't missed a run this season, though, as shown below.

Warren Sankey was particularly helpful to PRBO on the last day we could use the cove at East Landing. In order to unload heavy gear straight off his deck, he repeatedly maneuvered his boat directly beneath the crane—within feet of the rocks.

We greatly appreciate the dedication and expertise of all Farallon Patrol skippers.

—Derek Lee, PRBO Farallon biologist

Oct 26 Joe Nazar Kitty Kat

Nov 13 Jim & Jean Ellis Hoku lele

Dec 5 Alan Weaver & Warren Sankey Sari Ann

Dec 19 Jared Davis Bright Future

Jan 11 Alan Weaver & Warren Sankey Sari Ann

Staff Migrations
Michael Fitzgibbon and Eve Williams.

Two of PRBO's staff members have recently migrated within our organization.

Michael Fitzgibbon brings his broad abilities to the new post of Operations Manager of the Science Divisions. Initially, he continues also as an engineer in our Informatics Division, his position since November 2007. Along with expertise in software development, Michael has a Masters Degree in environmental planning and a passion for conservation. He says, "At PRBO I can help an organization that's doing work I care about."

Eve Williams, our membership assistant since August 2008, now has an larger role in coordinating events. She was a major force behind our fabulous Bird-A-Thon celebration in late January. A favorite aspect of her job? Eve says, "I get to see, read about, and experience the science side of PRBO, even though my job is administrative."

Congratulations to Michael and Eve!