Promoting the enjoyment, study, and conservation of Wisconsin's birds.

The 80th annual WSO convention over the Memorial Day weekend in Altoona was a collection of events, ranging from the kickoff picnic at the River Prairie Center’s riverfront pavilion to its annual Passenger Pigeon Awards Ceremony, to a special appearance by one of WSO’s historic figures, 99-year-old Dr. Charles Kemper, of Chippewa Falls (former editor of The Passenger Pigeon), to a collection of predawn-departing half-day and full-day field trips that visited a range of habitats, with some trips reporting 135+ species.

Participating in the May 24th awards ceremony in Altoona were (from left) WSO President Myles Hurlburt, Jeb Barzen (Bronze Passenger Pigeon), Brian Russart, Sue Foote-Martin and Mark Martin (Cutright Conservation Awards), Jim Knickelbine (Bronze) Mary Uttech (Silver Passenger Pigeon), Steve Betchkal (Bronze) and Wendy Schultz, Awards Committee chair.

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Photograph taken by Nancy Nabak.

The convention was honored to have on hand all three living recipients of its Samuel D. Robbins Lifetime Achievement award. From left are Daryl Tessen (2012), Dr. Charles Kemper (2004) and Bettie Harriman (2014). The award honors those who actively contribute to WSO above and beyond having previously received the Silver Passenger Pigeon Award (for service to WSO) and the WSO Certificate of Appreciation (for continued service).

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Photograph taken by Nancy Nabak.


--This is one of several timely articles in this month's Badger Birder newsletter; don't miss out on the latest birding and conservation news. Become a WSO member today!