SanCap Audubon Presents ‘Bird’s Secret Lives’

San-Cap Audubon’s fifth lecture program of the 2020 season brings back a lecture favorite, Dr. Ken Meyer of the University of Florida, Dept. of Wildlife Ecology, and Founder, Avian Research and Conservation Institute (ARCI). In his program “Bird’s Secret Lives” to be presented at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 6, at the Sanibel Community House, he will report on how ARCI’s field and tracking studies reveal clues and uncover mysteries that help us protect the future of birds we love.

Dr. Meyer will cover ARCI’s study findings on three species of particular interest to residents and visitors of Sanibel Island: Mangrove Cuckoos, Swallow-tailed Kites, and Reddish Egrets. ARCI’s long-term Swallow-tailed Kite research took on a more direct connection to Sanibel when they deployed one of their solar-powered, GPS-equipped transmitters on an adult Swallow-tailed Kite raising a family on one of the Sanibel’s extensive conservation tracts. Named “Sanibel”, its travels since will be discussed. In addition, serious management concerns, and long-standing ornithological curiosity, drove ARCI’s recent studies of two of Sanibel’s most interesting species, the Mangrove Cuckoo and the Reddish Egret. Some of the elusive goals of these studies have been determining seasonal movements, if any, of both species and the breeding locations of the Cuckoo. Dr. Meyer will visually cover the results of all three studies and help us consider what the future might be for these intriguing species of conservation concern.

Dr. Meyer honed his field work in the public sector as a research biologist in the Big Cypress National Preserve and Everglades National Park. Utilizing modern continent spanning satellite and radio transmission techniques, through ARCI, he is gathering data in an effort to determine current nesting regimens, demographics and migration information for species not previously thoroughly studied.

This is the fifth of eight Sanibel-Captiva Audubon lectures to be held in 2020 on Thursday evenings. As always, all are welcome to attend. Doors open at 6:15 p.m., and parking is available at the Community House as well as across Periwinkle Way in the Herb Strauss Theater parking area. A $10.00 donation per adult attendee is appreciated with proceeds after costs being used to promote conservation on Sanibel and in Florida. For additional information, call Bill Jacobson at (239) 395-1878 or visit the San-Cap Audubon Web site at

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