The Columbia, Missouri chapter of the Audubon Society — serving Audrain, Boone, Cooper, Howard, Monroe & Randolph Counties

CAS board meeting July 17, 2013 at the home of Jan and Bill Mees.

Present: Bill Mees, Howard Hinkel, Alice Robinson, Lori Hagglund, Laura Hillman, Carolyn Terry, John Besser, Allison Vaughn, Doug Miller, Jan Mees, and Lottie Bushmann.

Bill started the special board meeting with several announcements. Someone who is invested in the Community Foundation donated $200 to CAS. Concrete is being poured at CANS for the new trail going through the property. He reported that there are 2 walnut trees near the driveway to our parking lot that need to be cut down in order for the city sidewalk to be connected to the trail. Doug moved that Bill write to Parks and Rec. to request that they cut the 2 trees down. John 2nd. Passed. Bill also reported that they will seed along the new trail with grasses and wildflowers that are appropriate for this area.

Doug gave a brief history of the Long-Range Plan and suggested that we have in writing what the board does to keep up the properties, etc. This discussion was prompted in part by the large gift from the Koster estate. He suggested that we draw up plans for each of the Nature Areas, facilities, long range plans, etc. Need a general management plan for each area including natural history, interpretation management, etc. This would facilitate working with other organizations such as Master Naturalists, Sierra, etc. Bill encouraged us to have specific purposes for each property of CAS. There was discussion about contracting outside labor to finish some of the proposed projects to stay within the time frame (grants, Americorp, etc.)

There was some discussion about the Albert "sinkhole" property. John explained that it's more of a ravine with a small stream running through it but it's not very accessible. One of Mr. Albert's children didn't want the property sold. It was decided to table any further discussion about selling the property until there is need for the money for a specific project.

There was discussion about a Nature Center in Columbia and what our involvement would be. CAS would like to see it be built at Bonnie View Nature Area. Bill stated that the tax money for parks use has been planned out for the next five years. CAS could possibly contribute to the building along with other organizations.

Bill mentioned that there is a Nature School in Springfield with about 50 children attending. He and Mike Szydlowski from CPS plan to visit this fall along with a rep from Parks and Rec.

There was a brief discussion concerning CAS being involved with political issues. At this time we don't have a conservation board member who could be more involved. Allison could inform us of issues that might need our attention.

The Field Trip coordinator as well as the conservation position are currently vacant. It was agreed that the field trips went well this past year with different people leading them.

Lisa Schenker is interested is a young birder's group. She and Lottie led a field trip for children in May that was well attended and well received by the participants. It is hoped that this may generate more interest among young people to bird.

We need to check about having more bird feeders at schools and perhaps donate bird books and field guides to those schools.

Bill stated that we need to have a Speakers Bureau in CAS to fill the requests for speakers at various organizations.

Doug will revise the Long-Range Plan and send out to the board for review.

Jan will send the next Chat out at the end of August or early September. There was a plea for articles and a request that we each send info about the most recent "Lifer" that we've seen.

The meeting was adjourned at 9pm.

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