Audubon Adventures

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Have you ever seen a problem and thought, “Why doesn’t someone DO something?” Maybe that someone is you! Young people everywhere are taking action to help the natural areas, birds, and other wildlife they care deeply about. They are figuring out what needs to be done and then doing it. Kids of all ages are making their communities more wildlife-friendly and the Earth cleaner, healthier, and greener. You can, too! Here are some actions you can take.

 

 

Be a Friend to Birds and Wildlife

Help birds avoid hitting windows in your home by putting up screens, closing drapes and blinds, and sticking decals to the inside of the glass. Find some ideas here.
Use recycled materials or items you have around the house to make a bird feeder with these: milk carton; orange; pumpkin.
Provide a birdbath where birds can drink and also cool off. Here’s an easy way to make your own.

 

 

Native plants will make an area feel like home to native birds and other wildlife. They provide food, places to nest, rest, and hide. They also require less care than nonnative plants. Find out what native plants are right for your yard at Audubon’s Native Plants Database. Then spread seeds of native plants far and wide by making a seed ball.
Leaving dead trees, fallen branches, and brush piles in or around your yard creates nesting habitat for birds and provides protection from predators for all kinds of local critters.
Outdoor cats kill many, many birds each year. Keeping your cat indoors protects birds and other wildlife, and also gives the cat a better chance for a longer life.

 

 

Chemicals used to kill bugs and weeds in your yard can also harm wildlife, pets, and people.
A reusable water bottle saves energy and reduces pollution, which is good for birds, other wildlife, and people, too. Birds, fish, and other animals can mistake plastic for food. Keep beaches, parks, and other areas litter-free.
Join or start an environmentalist club at school, get involved with your local Audubon chapter, or join a “friends of the park” group.

 

 

Be a “Community Scientist”

This free, fun, and easy event happens every year for four days in February. Anyone, anywhere, and of any age can take part by counting birds for a few minutes and entering their results online.
From December 14 to January 5 each year, volunteers throughout the Western Hemisphere report bird sightings. Scientists use the information collected to study bird populations and guide conservation actions.
From November through April, volunteers count and report the birds they see at their feeders. The results help scientists learn about large-scale movements and trends in bird populations.

 

 

This year-round project invites people who live in cities and other places to count particular bird species in a particular area for 10 minutes at a time over three days. Scientists use the information to study how green spaces affect birds.
You can record and report the birds you see, keep track of your bird lists, and share information about birds that helps scientists study and protect the environment.
SciStarter is designed to bring together the millions of citizen/community scientists around the world who want to contribute to our understanding of the natural world. Look for a project that matches your location and your interests.

 

 

Be a Steward of the Earth

You can take actions in your everyday life to help make Planet Earth cleaner, healthier, and greener for birds, wildlife, and humans, too!


When you save energy, you reduce the burning of fossil fuels, which pollutes our air, soil, and water. There are plenty of things you can do, including recycling paper, plastic, glass, and metal; walking, riding your bike, or carpooling; eating less meat (because the production of meat uses a lot more energy than raising vegetables and grains); replacing incandescent light bulbs with light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs or compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs; unplug appliances when they’re not being used.

We have limited freshwater resources, and cleaning water uses energy, which in turn causes pollution. We can all save water and prevent water pollution with some simple actions: Take shorter showers; turn off the water while brushing your teeth; don’t let polluted water run into gutters (which eventually connect to local water bodies); don’t litter; clean up after pets; use a rain barrel to collect water for use in your yard; plant native plants, which require less water and other care.

Birds, other wildlife, and humans all need healthy habitats to survive and thrive. Join local groups that are cleaning up, restoring, or working to save and protect natural places. Reduce pollution by recycling, using refillable water bottles instead of one-use plastic ones, and composting to reduce solid waste that goes to dumps and landfills.

 

 

Learn and Share with Free Posters!

These free, downloadable posters have great information about protecting our planet and its wild and human inhabitants.

 

 

Photo: (t to b) Ryan Stone; Thinkstock/iStock; Linda M. Goodman; Larry Miller/Flickr/Creative Commons; Camilla Cerea/Audubon; Thinkstock/iStock (3); Creatas Images/Thinkstock; Toyota/TogetherGreen; Great Backyard Bird Count (2); Richard Pick; Trude Hurd; Thinkstock; Katie Blake; ingimage; Matt Rath/Chesapeake Bay Program/Flickr/Creative Commons; Camilla Cerea/Audubon.