by Eric Reuter

Welcome to the new CAS Website

The new CAS website that we’ve been discussing since last winter is finally live. The website will continue to provide the same basic content (including essential information about the organization, such as board members and natural areas), but some helpful new features have been added. We encourage you to explore the site and its features, but here’s a quick rundown:

  1. News and Events are now published online using modern software that streamlines the process of managing, organizing, and accessing these features; each story or event now has its own page and unique link, making it easier to find and share these features online. Explore the News and Events sections, and their archives, to see how this works (the past two newsletters have been entered as archival content so far).
  2. Field trip listings can now be directly posted and updated by the Field Trip Chair, rather than needing to be passed through the Web or News Editor.
  3. The front page now automatically displays the most important news for the current month, while the News section presents all news and archives. This allows visitors to quickly see what CAS is all about.
  4. Newsletters will now consist of a monthly email digest that automatically collects all relevant news posts and events for that month and sends them to all subscribers. This saves the considerable time needed to properly format a PDF newsletter. You can read the newsletter content by clicking the “read all” button in the email, on the links to individual stories in the email, or scroll through all stories on the website by using the Next and Previous buttons at the bottom of each story. Each newsletter will begin with a News & Notes post that collects essential information (such as letters from the President, board meeting summaries, and so on) into a single story, followed by individual news posts for any story long enough to merit separate treatment. At the end of each month, stories will “expire” in the relevant month’s archives, making space for the next month’s newsletter content.
  5. This new site is the culmination of many months of discussion, planning, and work by the entire board and the Web and News Editors in particular, including a survey of CAS members to gain feedback on the proposed changes and upgrades. Particular credit should go to MayeCreate Design of Columbia for working closely and patiently with us to build the site, and to Doug Miller for many hours of background work handling the transition. If you have any further questions or comments regarding this project, please contact Douglas Miller (Web Editor), Eric Reuter  (News Editor), or any board member to share your thoughts.

From the President

Three new CAS members and most of the board had a great time at the Rock Bridge State Park picnic shelter last Saturday playing with binoculars and spotting scopes and thumbing through different bird books. Then, as promised, they all went bird watching in the park. As a good president, I volunteered to babysit the equipment and cookies. I picked up John’s list of phone and computer apps and remembered seeing him using an iPad while birding. As many of you know, I don’t have a smart phone and don’t know how to use eBird. Well, I came home and got two free apps for my new iPad and spent the night looking at pictures of birds and playing their songs. So maybe the October CAS meeting will do the impossible and teach me to recognize bird calls. Keep letting us know what we can do to expand birding and nature for you. In November, you get to entertain by sharing your birding stories and photos with the membership at the traditional place and time (third Wednesday of the month, 7:00 at the UU Church). – by Laura Hillman

October Board Meeting Unofficial Summary

Official meeting minutes will be posted to the website after approval at each subsequent board meeting, and linked to here in the News & Notes post. Below is an unofficial summary of business discussed and conducted on October 18, 2017. Please note that the complete minutes archive page is not yet ready for the new website; please bear with us while we continue to move content over from the old website.

  • The minutes from the August 16 and September 20 board meetings were reviewed and approved.
  • Report and discussion on the upcoming 2017 CoMoGives fundraising campaign.
  • Future meeting plans: November will feature a curated selection of members sharing their birding stories and photos. December will be the traditional Christmas Bird Count and chili supper. January will feature a talk by Missouri state ornithologist Sarah Kendrick. February will be a book-club–style meeting hosted by Eric Reuter. A live falconry presentation is being explored as a possibility for a spring meeting.
  • The Audubon Society of Missouri (ASM) plans to host its Spring 2018 meeting at Arrow Rock, Missouri and may host its fall meeting in Columbia. It was suggested that CAS might collaborate with ASM to host a notable guest speaker for both groups in September 2018.
  • The new CAS website was briefly presented and discussed.
  • A new trail is planned through the prairie portions of the Columbia Audubon and Bonnie View Nature Sanctuaries in collaboration with the City of Columbia.
  • Three field trips are scheduled for November. The possibility of constructing an open viewing stand with ADA access at Pool 14 at Eagle Bluffs Conservation Area has been proposed; CAS would be interested in supporting this idea and will look into it.
  • The second “Birdwise” program at the Daniel Boone Regional Library in Columbia on October 15th was attended by 11 children. The library has asked CAS to conduct three more programs in Spring 2018, and possibly some adult programs as well.

Rock Bridge State Park 50th Anniversary Celebration

Summarized from the official announcement; read full event details online here.

11/4/2017: Celebrate the park’s 50th anniversary by enjoying music, learning about the park’s history and natural resources, meeting park founders and their family members, eating free food and participating in the 50th anniversary scavenger hunt. Tour Connor’s Cave, hike to Coyote Bluff for scenic views (0.5 mile) and go inside the Hickam Log Cabin.  Two PowerPoint presentations will alternate: one on influential people in the park’s history and another on the special natural resources of the park and how they are doing. Reservations are not required for attending the event, but are required for the PowerPoint presentations and Coyote Bluff hikes due to limited space. Event times: 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Submit an idea for the February “book club” meeting

For the February meeting, Eric Reuter will be leading a book discussion for anyone who wants to attend. The goal is to select a book that informs and challenges our thinking about birds, bird-watching, and/or broader issues in conservation. The event will curate a  discussion that brings out several viewpoints so that we can learn from each other, with a shared book as a common starting point. If you’d like to suggest a book for us all to read (or reread), please contact Eric by the end of November. I hope to announce the book choice in the December newsletter so we all have several months to find and read it.

How you can help support CAS

Carrying out our mission through education, conservation, and outreach takes a wide variety of resources, from the valued time of dedicated volunteers to the financial support of members and donors. We welcome and appreciate all participants and supporters of our work through their generous donations of time, money, or other resources.