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Workshops

2016 workshop web booth
Booths will be at the Festival on Saturday from 9 am to 6 pm.
2016 workshop web audience
Youth and Family Programming see schedule


WORKSHOPS 2020

Great Salt Lake Bird Festival is pleased to be hosted at the new George S. and Delores Dore' Eccles Wildlife Education Center at 1157 S. Waterfowl Way (1100 W. Glovers Lane) Farmington, UT 84025.
All workshops are free, unless otherwise notes. Ticket price coming soon for Keynote Address and Dinner on Saturday May 16, 2020. 

You can view the 2020 Festival Program here or see the workshop descriptions below.

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EWEC Map



Friday, May 15th

Workshop

3:30– 5:00pm

Free

🏫


Book signing: 5:00-5:45pm

Tongues, Toes & tales of Utah Woodpeckers- Anatomy & Adaptation

Keynote Speaker: Steve Shunk


Imagine, for a moment, slamming your face into a brick wall going 16 miles per hour. This self-destructive (and foolish) act would require you to exert about 1,200 g of force. Yet, a woodpecker exerts the same force up to 20 times per second, and as many as 12,000 times per day, pounding its head into trees! How does it do this without getting concussions or retinal hemorrhages?!

Woodpeckers possess amazing adaptations that make them one of the most specialized bird families in the world, and each species’ anatomy perfectly suits its unique lifestyle. North American woodpecker specialist Steve Shunk will dive deep into the secrets of woodpecker anatomy, with 3-D skeletal images, videos of signature behaviors, and historic drawings of anatomical characters.


Book Signing immediately following the workshop.


Held at the Wildlife Education Center: 1157 S. Waterfowl Way (1100 W. Glovers Lane) Farmington, UT 84025.


Awards Presentation

5:45 – 6:00pm

Student Art & Photo Contest Awards

Sponsored by Davis County


We invite you to come and experience the Student Art and Photo Contest displays on-site at the Eccles Wildlife Education Center. Each year the Festival extends an invitation to schools up and down the Wasatch Front to submit their best work of the Festival’s featured bird. 1st through 3rd place broken out by age group categories are presented, along with a Best of Show award.


Held at the Wildlife Education Center: 1157 S. Waterfowl Way (1100 W. Glovers Lane) Farmington, UT 84025.


Family Program

6:00–7:00pm

Free

🏫


Come on a Quest with SeaQuest


Seaquest will be doing a presentation with a variety of live animals: snakes, lizards, birds and insects. Fun for all ages with an interactive meet and greet afterwards.


Held at the Wildlife Education Center: 1157 S. Waterfowl Way (1100 W. Glovers Lane) Farmington, UT 84025.



Saturday, May 16th

Workshop

8:00 – 9:00 am

Free

🏫

How to find your artistic vision in photography

Tom Mathewson


Everyone has their own unique artistic vision. Tom will explain the equipment, settings and shooting techniques that he prefers in his work. He will also plan on picking apart some of his own photos to show how to find and capture the art and beauty of a scene.


Behaviors will be addressed with birds as well as with other photographers and tourists, and how to deal with and not disturb them (both birds and people.). The group will also explore a recent concern: How a “herd mentality” can make the best photographers do wrong things as a group, and how to avoid that trap.


But above all, Tom will cover how to enjoy finding and capturing the art and beauty of birds.

Workshop

9:00 – 10:00am

Free

🏫


HawkWatch Raptor Monitoring and Citizen Science Opportunities Near the Great Salt Lake

Hawkwatch Staff


HawkWatch International has been monitoring raptors for 34 years. Our work began with fall and spring migration surveys, and has evolved over time to include nest surveys, animal tracking, threats research, citizen science, and more. We highlight some of the monitoring and research work that has occurred near the Great Salt Lake in recent decades, including migration counts at Promontory Point, Golden Eagle nest monitoring and satellite tracking, Short-Eared Owl surveys, American Kestrel nest box monitoring, and monitoring of other urban raptors in the Salt Lake Valley. We discuss opportunities for partners and volunteers to get involved in this important work with the top avian predators of the Great Salt Lake ecosystem.


Workshop

10:00 – 11:00 am

Free

🏫

Owls Inside and Out

Ben Woodruff


This program will feature live owls and will go over fascinating and little known attributes of owls from around the world. Find out how owls appear fluorescent to each other and the secret behind their ability to turn their head so far. This program has something for all ages and experience levels.”


Youth Activities

10:00am- 2:00pm

Free

🏫


Youth Activities: Fun and Educational Too!


Youth activities run 10am through 2pm. FREE Guided bird walks around Wildlife Center loop at 10am and 1pm.


Workshop

11:00am-12:00pm

Free

🏫

Old Crap and Bird Crap: Historical Archaeology of GSL

Jaimi Butler & Chris Merritt


Since the shorelines of Lake Bonneville receded, Great Salt Lake has featured prominently in the natural and cultural history of North America and beyond. Millions of birds rely on the productive environment for breeding, nesting, and refueling during migration, feasting on the ample food supplies in and around the lake. Humans possess a close connection to the lake as well, from early Paleoindians hunting mammoths on its marshy shores, to Fremont villages and agricultural fields nestled at its shores. More recently, the lake has been seen as a place of recreation and exploitation. The salty brine featured as a major recreational draw, supporting several different bathing resorts from Black Rock, to Lakeside, to Saltair (I, II, and III). Capitalists also saw the lake as a much more lucrative endeavor for exploitation through salt evaporation, brine shrimp harvesting and even market hunting. We all, birds included, have a stake in the future of Great Salt Lake. History nerd Chris Merritt (Utah State Historic Preservation Office) and Great Salt Lake nerd Jaimi Butler (biologist and Coordinator of Great Salt Lake Institute) will talk about modern research collaboration attempts to bridge the entire gap of Great Salt Lake's multi-thousand year human-environment interactions, and spur a new century of engagement for a new generation of lake lovers. In other words, we will talk about “Old Crap, Bird Crap and Learned Crap”


Workshop

12:00 – 1:00pm

Free

🏫

Festival Bird: Northern Harrier

Ben Woodruff


The Northern Harrier is this year's spotlight species. This presentation will share insights and little known facts about harriers. How they live, hunt, nest, and thrive through the state of Utah.


#30

Workshop

1:00 - 2:00 pm

Free

🏫


AND


Field trip

2:00 - 5:00 pm

Needs ticket.


Birding for Beginners Workshop

Farmington Birding Hot Spots

Dallin Henderson & Max Malmquist


Enjoy this FREE one hour workshop for beginners and families. We will discuss bird identification and the common backyard birds in the Farmington area.


AFTER the workshop we will visit six viewing areas including Farmington Pond, Farmington Canyon (after the first bridge), Egg Island Viewing areas, Glover Pond, and Buffalo Ranch Pond.

Field trip tickets can be purchased on-line.


Meet at the Wildlife Education Center: 1157 S. Waterfowl Way (1100 W. Glovers Lane) Farmington, UT 84025.


Workshop

1:00 - 2:00 pm

Free

🏫

Talent of Talons

Heidi Christensen


Sharp eyes, sharp beaks, and sharp talons-these are the characteristics all raptors share, yet each one is unique in their own way. How are falcons, hawks, and owls able to co-exist so well as hunters and often top predators? With the aid of our live birds, Ogden Nature Center will go over the adaptations of a variety of raptors and how they are similar and different. As we examine these birds we will better understand the talent behind their talons and how each one tackles survival.


Workshop

2:00 – 2:30 pm

Free

🏫

Golden Eagle Use of Water in Utah’s West Desert

Danielle Finlayson


Golden Eagle's are a common resident of Utah's west desert. Although we know much about their life history and behaviors, very little has been studied on their use of water. BYU and the military's Dugway Proving Ground have had remote cameras on water sources in the desert for 10 years. Come learn about how Golden Eagles are using water sources in one of the harshest climates in the state.


Workshop

2:30 – 3:00 pm

Free

🏫

Eared Grebes Nesting in Freshwater Impoundments Surrounding Great Salt Lake, Utah

Mark Bell


Mark is going for his PhD at USU and is currently working on a project about birds nesting around the GSL. Come listen to him talk about what he has found out so far. Over the past two years we have looked at nesting behaviors of Eared Grebes at one of their southernmost known nesting areas. We compare our data to the more common nesting sites to discover trade offs associated with these nesting sights.


Workshop

3:00 – 4:00 pm

Free

🏫

Great Salt Lake Shorebirds, Their Habitat and Food Base

Ella Sorensen, John Neil, Heidi Hoven


This workshop will highlight the beauty, wonder, and great diversity of shorebirds dependent on Great Salt Lake. American Avocets and Black-necked Stilts are two of the most conspicuous and exciting birds occurring in the wetlands of Great Salt Lake. But every year millions of other shorebirds representing 40 species congregate on Great Salt Lake. It is one of the largest concentrations of shorebirds on Earth, and yet, compared to waterfowl and colonial nesting species at GSL, they have received relatively little attention.


Keynote Address & Dinner 6 pm


Keynote Speaker Steve Shunk

and Dutch oven Dinner

“How Woodpeckers can save the world (at least your local woodland)! ”


Woodpeckers represent one of the most specialized bird families in the world, and North America's woodpeckers play critical roles in our continent's forests and woodlands. In fact, nowhere else on Earth are woodpeckers such important contributors to woodland ecology. Join Oregon naturalist and North American woodpecker specialist, Steve Shunk, for an exciting journey into the lives and times of North America’s amazing woodpeckers.

Steve will share the secrets of woodpecker anatomy, and he will translate anatomical adaptation into the fascinating behaviors we love to watch among our woodland carpenters. Each species’ anatomy perfectly suits its unique lifestyle, with different woodpeckers posessing adaptations for aerial acrobatics; for drilling sap wells; for extracting wood-boring beetle larvae; or for extracting ants from underground burrows. He will demystify woodpecker feeding, courtship, and nesting behaviors, including the reasons why woodpeckers pound on our houses and what we can do about it. Steve will also reveal the keystone ecological roles played by our local woodpeckers, and he will send you home with a mission: Prepare to be entertained, educated, and inspired as ambassadors for woodpecker and forest conservation.


Hosted at the Wildlife Education Center: 1157 S. Waterfowl Way (1100 W. Glovers Lane) Farmington, UT 84025.


*Vegetarian meals available. Ticket required.


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