Banquet – November 17, 2016

Speaker: Katie Fallon


Witmer Stone Award: George Armistead and Hart Rufe

Rosalie Edge Conservation Award: Dr. Stephen Kress

Julian K. Potter Award: Matthew Halley

Speaker: Katie Fallon

“Coffee, Coal, and Cooperation: Saving the Cerulean Warbler”
The cerulean warbler is one of the fastest-declining Neotropical migratory songbirds; since 1966 its population has declined by approximately 3% per year. In addition to discussing the challenges ceruleans face during the breeding and non-breeding seasons, this presentation will discuss some of the biology and natural history of cerulean warblers. How does the male cerulean woo the female? Who builds the nest, and how do they choose a nest location? How many young do they have, and how do they raise them? Once young cerulean warblers leave their nests and begin finding food on their own, where do they go? And what might they encounter on the way? We will also discuss tips for finding and identifying cerulean warblers while birding, as well as the ways that we can help conserve cerulean warblers.

Katie Fallon is the author of the nonfiction book Cerulean Blues: A Personal Search for a Vanishing Songbird (Ruka Press, November 2011). A finalist for the Reed Award for Outstanding Writing on the Southern Environment, Katie has also been nominated several times for a Pushcart Prize. Katie has taught creative writing at Virginia Tech and West Virginia University. Her first word was “bird”, and she is one of the founders of the Avian Conservation Center of Appalachia, Inc., a nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving wild birds through scientific research; outreach and public education; and rescue and rehabilitation. The ACCA is based near Morgantown, WV, and each year treats approximately 150 injured wild birds. In addition to birding, Katie enjoys hiking, canoeing, yoga, and wine. She lives in Cheat Neck, WV, with her daughter Laurel, husband Jesse, and dog Liza Jane.