In the merry month of May......
     May was  a very busy month with lots of programs and banding events.  A total of 57 species of birds were banded during the month. We started the month at HEB Camp with Ballinger and Bronte students and then Camp Discovery with Christoval students.  More detailed information of the camps and photos are below. We welcomed the wonderful rain even though we had to cancel a couple of scheduled demonstrations for school groups.  The second season of the  MAPS station started on May 12th with a nice array of birds. The second session of MAPS was on May 22nd. More information about the MAPS sessions is on the West Texas Avian Research, Inc. web site. During the months of May and April, we have presented programs for more than four hundred school kids and numerous adult groups.
On Monday, May 14th, the first and second grade students from San Angelo Academy came to the Hummer House for a morning of bird banding demonstrations. They were a delightful group and were able to release banded birds.

Later that week, we did a program for a large tour group from Mississippi who were on a Mystery Tour. They had no idea of what they were going to see but upon leaving, they assured us that the trip to the Hummer House and bird banding was the highlight of their trip. Sixty one birds of twelve species were handled during the presentation.

On Saturday, May 19th, a group from First Christian Church of Lubbock came to the Hummer House for a private banding program. Cathy and some of the banders were surprised to see people in this group that they had previously known many years before in different locations. It was a great day for all with lots of observations and learning.  Seventeen species of birds captured at the spring and orchard were banded during the morning.

A large group of students from Water Valley stopped at the Hummer House for a bird banding presentation on May 21st. Even though they were on the way to HEB camp, they still showed an interest in birds and the banding process.  

Camp Discovery at Hummer House Ranch
     After much planning and preparation, the first annual Camp Discovery for the 4th Grade students of Christoval Elementary was held at the Hummer House on May 7th. Dan and Cathy Brown  hosted a group of knowledgeable and experienced naturalists who gathered to present programs for the field day. Students were placed in groups with parent sponsors and rotated through the stations set in separate locations. Dan Brown presented a program about rocks and minerals. Kelly Bryan banded and taught about hummingbirds. Toni Gallucci brought an impressive collection of reptiles to the field day and taught about them. He also provided the lunch entertainment for students and staff.  Henry Dusek  made a presentation of local history and Kay Thompson led a discussion of native plants. Christy Youkers presented a program on water conservation. The Concho Valley Bird Banding group banded and discussed song birds. We thank Master Bird Banders, Fred Bassett and Don Connell, for volunteering their help with the banding demonstrations. Based on the comments from students, parents, presenters and teaching staff, the day was a tremendous success. and a good time was had by all.  We are already in the planning stages for a second edition of Discovery Camp next spring.  More information on the Discovery Day Camp is available by visiting the West Texas Avian Research Inc. website that is linked to this site.