Friday, November 25, 2016

Upcoming talk: Science Cafe with the Prather Lab

Join the Laramie Audubon Society and the Biodiversity Institute next week for a Science Café featuring work by Dr. Jonathan Prather and his lab. Prather studies the neurobiology of communication in birds.

A summary of the lab's recent work: "We use our words to communicate with each other every day, and we rely on good decision making to keep us healthy and out of trouble. In both speech and decision making, specialized circuits in the brain enable us to learn from experience. When we take a close look at songbirds, we find that they do they same thing. Birds learn their songs just like we learn the sounds we use in speech, and female birds evaluate the quality of male birds’ songs in order to select their mates. How does the brain do that, and how can we use that insight to understand more about ourselves?"
Dr. Jonathan Prather

Wednesday, November 30
UW Berry Center Auditorium
10th Street and Lewis Street
Laramie, Wyoming
Free parking after 5 pm

6:30 pm Refreshments and Bird Chat
7:00 pm Program begins

The Science Café will feature three talks:

Dr. Jonathan Prather  - How the brain learns to communicate and make good decisions: What studying songbirds can teach us about human behavior

Karagh Murphy - What songbirds can teach us about human behavior

Jeff Dunning - Shedding light on the female songbird brain

We will also hold our annual board member elections at this meeting. Members who cannot attend this meeting will be able to vote via an online survey, coming soon to your email.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Upcoming trip: Laramie Valley

Pronghorn. Photo (c) Shawn Billerman.
This Saturday, 12 November, Tim Banks will lead us on a tour of the Laramie Valley for whatever birds we can find. Waterfowl have been disappointingly absent so far this fall, but raptor diversity is usually good in the valley! Join us for the adventure--never know what we might find.

We will meet at 8 am at Night Heron Books & Coffeehouse to carpool. Bring binoculars, a scope if you have one, and field guides. Dress for the weather and bring water and snacks. I plan to be back in Laramie by 11:45 am; if you can only join us for part of the time, be prepared to drive your own vehicle or coordinate with carpool buddies.

Birders of all levels are welcome! Our trips are free and open to the public.

Rough-legged Hawk. Photo (c) Shawn Billerman.