Finch Research Network (FiRN) Board Meeting, 1st quarter 2021:
We’re all excited to have a full board meeting in the books! This was a meeting of the “full board” (top left to right: FiRN Founder and President Matt Young; Engineer Ken McEnaney; Finch Forcaster and Field Ornithologist Tyler Hoar; 2nd row left to right: UC-Davis Professor Tom Hahn; Oregon State Professor Jamie Cornelius; Director of Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s Center for Conservation Bioacoustics Holger Klink; bottom left to right: Professional Astronomer and Field Ornithologist Tim Spahr; and Sound Recordist and Field Biologist in Germany Patrick Franke).
While board meetings always involve procedural issues and formalities, the Board had a fairly lengthy discussion about fundraising efforts around specific research projects. We plan to fund student projects that will have a focus on field work and getting people outdoors. We have already been collaborating with Western Pennsylvania Land Conservancy, Powdermill Avian Nature Reserve, and Carnegie Museum of Natural History on the wintering Evening Grosbeak Project. We’ve been discussing a few different areas of focus regarding research on Red Crossbills as well; one specific area that is already ongoing is putting out ARU’s (autonomous recording units) across North America to collect additional call type data. And lastly, we’re in the beginning stages of being part of a Rosy-Finch working group, and this will be the third finch group (the Rosy-finch Project) that will be the focus in North America (the other two will be the Red Crossbill and Evening Grosbeak species complexes).
The Finch Superflight in the east has been a ton of fun, leading to over 40 interviews, articles, and presentations in just 4 months. Over the coming months and years we plan to fundraise for the above listed projects and more to help support student projects that will have a focus on field work and getting more people outdoors! Of course all members present are excited about the opportunity to devote time and effort to studying this fascinating family of birds, and some of us are really keen to get back to doing some regular field work and engaging with students of all ages. Since the launch of our website, we have received support from a devoted group of finch enthusiasts, observers and researchers, and we are looking forward to engaging with you as research unfolds.
FiRN is a nonprofit, and has been granted 501c3 status. FiRN is committed to researching and protecting these birds and other threatened finch species like the Evening Grosbeak and Rosy-finches, and if you have been enjoying all the blogs and identifying of Red Crossbill call types, redpoll subspecies and green morph Pine Siskins FiRN has helped with, please consider supporting our efforts and making a small donation using the link below.