Connecting TWP’s Work through Migratory Birds

By Gemara Gifford, Conservation Scientist & TWP’s Development Director

Mist-nets
Mist-nets help researchers study migratory warblers in Central America, photo by Ruth Bennett

Have you ever wondered where birds go when they fly south? October is that time of year when migratory birds to gear up to fly from TWP’s projects in the Northern Great Plains all the way down to those in Latin America. Golden-winged Warblers (pictured above), Black-and-white Warblers, Wood Thrushes, and Baltimore Orioles are just a few species that will winter in remote places like Guatemalan villages, Salvadoran cloud forests, Honduran coffee agroecosystems, and Nicaraguan dry forests.

Unfortunately, migratory bird populations are declining faster than most other avian species worldwide (State of North America’s Birds 2016) due to habitat loss on their wintering grounds and also because we know less about their conservation requirements in Central America compared to their breeding grounds in the U.S. and Canada. What we do know is migrants tend to live in the same places as the rural communities whom TWP works with, and can directly benefit from community-based development projects (Agroecosystems for communities and conservation).

Did you know that TWP’s clean cookstove, reforestation, and farmer-to-farmer training programs in Central America are especially helping to conserve migratory birds?

  • TWP’s clean cookstoves greatly reduce the amount of fuelwood families use to cook (an average of 50%) and as a result protect nearby forests and reduce deforestation.
  • Our reforestation programs in the U.S. and Central America improve degraded bird habitat, with over 7 million trees planted so far, and also protect the soils and watersheds upon which families depend.
  • By training hundreds of smallholder farmers in agroecology, agriculture can be diversified with multiple tree species and crop types which creates excellent migratory bird habitat while producing important foods and fibers for people.
Golden-winged Warbler
A male Golden-winged Warbler winters in fragmented habitats in Guatemala, photo by Ruth Bennett

For 18 years, our generous supporters have been helping us make the world a better place for people and the planet. Did you realize your dedication has also been helping to conserve threatened migratory birds?

On behalf of TWP, I am excited to invite you to join us on our newest endeavor with migratory birds – to follow them as they head south! This January, we’ll take 15 TWP donors and supporters to tour our new projects in Central Honduras. There we will conduct baseline bird surveys in cloud forest agroecosystems, and participate in on-the-ground bird conservation efforts through clean cookstove construction, tree planting, and ten days of cross-cultural exchange with our local partners at the Center for Education in Sustainable Agriculture in Socorro, Honduras.

With your continued support we can make the world a better place for people and wildlife. For more information about how to attend the 2017 Honduras Work Tour, or to learn about how TWP’s projects benefit birds, give me a call at 877-606-4TWP.

A special thanks to Ruth Bennett, Ph.D. student at Cornell University, for providing photos of her ongoing research in Central America to uncover the best strategies for conserving the Golden-winged Warblers in working landscapes.

TWP Sponsoring Americas Latino Eco Festival, Oct. 15-17

Americas Latino Eco Festival

Trees, Water & People is excited to be a sponsor of the 3rd annual Americas Latino Eco Festival (ALEF), October 15-17 in Denver, Colorado, the largest multicultural environmental event of its kind leveraging Latino leadership for conservation gains.

ALEF establishes a home for advocates and leaders from the leading organizations with Latino constituencies and environmental mandates. ALEF advocates for an integrated local and national conservation agenda committed to advancing Latinos’ connections with nature and experience of the outdoors that in turn may inspire future stewardship of our natural resources. ALEF 2015 will launch an authoritative climate training program as well as call for actions on climate stewardship, land conservation, and the transition to renewable energies.

“This year’s festival, our third, is more ambitious and urgent than ever,” said Irene Vilar, founder of the festival. “We are turning the largest annual multicultural event of its kind into a powerful platform for advocacy on climate action and of course showcasing the arts as a most impactful vehicle for raising environmental awareness.  With the Obama Administration’s Clean Power Plan in the implementation stage at the state level, and the upcoming climate talks in Paris this November, failure is not an option. If we hope to change the direction on climate change, advocates must come together!”

The festival involves over 400 presenters and advocates and an estimated audience of over 5,000 people during three days of presentations, workshops and celebrations at three venues in downtown Denver: Metro State University, Denver Art Museum and Denver Public Library.

On the morning of October 17, from 8:30-10:00am, TWP and Amazon Aid will co-host ALEF’s Breakfast with Bianca Jagger, to hear insights and perspectives that motivated ALEF to award the 2015 Nuestra Madre Award to this extraordinary activist for human rights and environmental justice.

Many of the ALEF events are FREE and open to the public. For more information please visit: www.americaslatinoecofestival.org

Americas Latino Eco Festival

Happy International Day of Forests!

International Forest Day

Today we join with citizens around the globe to celebrate the International Day of Forests!

According to the United Nations, “Forests cover one third of the Earth’s land mass, performing vital functions around the world. Around 1.6 billion people – including more than 2,000 indigenous cultures – depend on forests for their livelihood. Forests are the most biologically-diverse ecosystems on land, home to more than 80% of the terrestrial species of animals, plants and insects. They also provide shelter, jobs and security for forest-dependent communities. They play a key role in our battle in adapting to and mitigating climate change. Forests contribute to the balance of oxygen, carbon dioxide and humidity in the air. They protect watersheds, which supply 75% of freshwater worldwide.”

Communities around the world are dependent on healthy forests for their livelihoods.
Communities around the world are dependent on healthy forests for their livelihoods.

Trees, Water & People’s Reforestation Program is working to conserve and protect the forests of Central America and Haiti by working with local communities to replant trees, helping to improve watershed health, increase biodiversity, and create better livelihoods for local families. With over 5.6 million trees planted to date, our Reforestation Program focuses on establishing and maintaining tree nurseries, educating communities about the positive environmental impacts of reforestation, and strengthening economic development, both through conservation and the responsible management of forest resources.

Last year, we started the construction of the Nicaraguan Center for Forests, Energy & Climate. This new facility will be a regional hub for Latin Americans to learn about forest management and climate adaption. You can support the development of this new center by making a contribution today!

donate button

“To build a sustainable, climate-resilient future for all, we must invest in our world’s forests. That will take political commitment at the highest levels, smart policies, effective law enforcement, innovative partnerships and funding.”

– Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Upcoming Event: Sustainable Living Fair, Sept. 20-21

Sustainable Living Fair 2014

Don’t miss out on one of the best sustainability fairs in the country! The 15th Annual Sustainability Fair will be September 20-21 at Legacy Park in Fort Collins, CO.

The Fair features 11,000 attendees, acclaimed Keynote Speakers, 200 exhibitors, 75 workshops, hands-on experiences, Family Planet with a Natural Parenting Nook, Natural Health and Yoga Tent, live music and entertainment, our Real Food Market and Local Libations – featuring world class beer, wine, cider and mead.  VOLUNTEERS get FREE Admission, sign up TODAY!

On Saturday, Sept. 20 from 3-4pm in the Renewable Energy Tent, TWP’s International Director Sebastian Africano will present “Addressing Energy Poverty with Innovative Efficiency and Renewable Energy Solutions.” For more information click here.

Trees, Water & People is a proud sponsor of this annual event and we look forward to seeing you there!

Upcoming Event: Earth Day Celebration – April 27

Earth Day Fort Collins 2014

Take a walk on the wild side at our 5th Annual Food Co-op Earth Day Celebration on Sunday, April 27th from 11am-5pm. This year, we’ve partnered with The Fort Collins Food Co-Op, The Downtown Business Association, Bohemian Foundation, School of Global Environmental Sustainability- Colorado State University and The Gearage. Party begins in Old Town Square and crawls onto Mountain Avenue. It’s free and open to all walks of life!

Enjoy live music, Kid Zone crafts and flower planting provided by Gulley Greenhouse Inc., face painting, food trucks, vendors, a silent auction, Septacycle rides and more. Going with our Wildlife theme, the W.O.L.F Sanctuary will be the beneficiaries of the silent auction. Stop by the Food Co-op booth for information on our Party Animal Partners promotion and see how you can save at local business throughout the day! Check out the crafty critters at the Freedom Market.

Dance your fur off in Old Town Square with Fale African Drum and Dance Collective of Fort Collins, Saja Butler, Cool Hand Juke, Lineage Music Project and Ambassador Wolf.

For more information please visit the Fort Collins Food Co-Op website.

Upcoming Event: Wine and Cheese Tasting to Benefit TWP

December 16, 2013
6:00-8:00 pm
216 Pine Street, Fort Collins, CO 80524
wine cheese
The Welsh Rabbit Cheese Shop is pleased to partner with Trees, Water & People for an enjoyable open house evening.  Each season, The Welsh Rabbit introduces three new Wine Flights which have been chosen by friends who enjoy wine.  This Winter, Sebastian and his cousin Pato, chose three wonderful Chilean Wines.  We’ll be pairing these wines with cheeses, meat, and chocolate, plus a locally made baguette thrown in for good measure!  For each ticket sold, The Welsh Rabbit will donate $10 to TWP.
$29.00/person
Flight of 3 Wines
Flight of 3 Cheeses
Baguettes, Chorizo, & Chocolate
(additional glasses of wine, $7)
Please call The Welsh Rabbit Cheese Shop to RSVP at (970) 232-9521 or email Maria@TheWelshRabbit.com