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Washington

Gordon Hempton's One Square Inch of Silence

One Square Inch of Silence, located in the Hoh Rain Forest of Olympic National Park in Washington State, is the quietest place in the Lower 48. This location is not truly silent—as the stream and calling birds in the recording below can attest—but it is free of anthropogenic, or human-generated,... read more »

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Palouse Country

The Palouse country in southeastern Washington features rolling hills, fertile soils, and grassland birds like this Western Meadowlark, which nests in native vegetation between wheat fields. Horned Larks are less choosy, nesting in the wheat fields and fledging their broods before harvest time.... read more »

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In the Field with Wildlife Biologist, Dan Varland

From 1949 to the 1970s, tons of DDT were discharged into ocean waters off the Southern California coast. Even now, decades later, California sea lions that have eaten pesticide-laden prey migrate north as far as British Columbia. Some die and wash up on the beaches of Washington State. There they... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  environmental champion, science

Monitoring the Health of Coastal Raptors

Since 1995, biologist Dan Varland, Executive Director of Coastal Raptors, has been monitoring the health of raptors on the Washington coast, where Peregrine Falcons stoop on shorebirds feeding along the tideline. He’s looking for mercury and DDT in the birds’ blood systems. Though it has been... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  environmental champion, science

Celebrating 50 Years and One Rare Bird at Wenas

The song of a Western Meadowlark rings out across the eastern slope of Washington’s Cascade Mountains. Come Memorial Day weekend, members of Audubon and friends will celebrate 50 years of gathering at the Wenas Campground to welcome the birds and wildflowers of spring. Two hundred and fifty-seven... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  birding, festival, humor

Eagles on the Elwha River

2012... Salmon once battled their way up the Elwha River to spawn. And every fall, hundreds of eagles feasted on the spent fish. But a century ago, two dams were built on the river, and they reduced the river's salmon population by more than 90 per cent. After nearly 40 years of negotiation, the... read more »

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Monitoring Migrating Shorebirds - With Sarah Schmidt

Right now, volunteer observers are counting shorebirds on the move. Sandpipers, dowitchers, plovers, Dunlin, and others that raised their young in the Arctic are now making southbound migrations. They're looking for places to feed and rest along the way. On Crockett Lake in Washington State,... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  citizen science

Canyon Spectacle - Swakane Canyon

Canyons, whether large or small, can host a spectacular variety of birds! Consider Swakane Canyon, in central Washington State. It cuts west from the Columbia River into the Entiat Mountains for nine miles, while gaining nearly 3,000 feet. Steep slopes wall in the canyon floor, several hundred... read more »

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Cats and Birds - Interview with Linda Bainbridge

American Bird Conservancy says that about 80 million pet cats, plus 60 to 100 million homeless or feral ones, kill more than 500 million birds every year in the U.S. Only one-third of cat owners always keep their cats indoors. Linda Bainbridge, of Whidbey Island, Washington has found a way to... read more »

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James Swan's Willapa Bay

In 1852, James Swan took up residence in what we now know as Willapa Bay on the southwest coast of Washington State. In his book The Northwest Coast, Swan described the birds he observed on the bay: “white and black swans, white geese, Canada geese, brant, Sheldrake, cormorants, loon, mallard... read more »

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Topics & Themes:  history

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