Archive for October, 2008

27
Oct
08

Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival

Thanks to a referral from the stellar staff at Eagle Optics  the Burning Hawk team will migrate to the Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival in Harlingen, Texas November 5th through 9th. This festival, located in a globally famous and species-rich birding zone, is one of the leading gatherings of like-minded bird lovers in the world. It is a great honor to have been included as partner along with other great organizations such as our friends at Eagle Optics , Wild Bird Magazine and National Geographic Society.

Below is a thoughtful note sent to us from the Festival’s Vice President Jan Wyrick:

We’re extremely “Proud” to be sharing the stage with Burning Hawk Wines, as the curtain rises on our 15th Annual event, November 5-9—-introducing this “Budding Star”, the “Little Engine That Could”——We encourage YOU to join in our excitement by buying a case of their wine-(and doing your part), as we raise our glasses in a rousing “Toast” to the “Spirit of the Burning Hawk” and to this “Intoxicating” little “Fledgling” of a wine brand” (with “Philanthropic” pockets)——–There has never been a cause that could more aptly be described as—-“FOR THE BIRDS” …

We extend our thanks to Jan and her team of kindred spirit bird lovers and festival organizers. We appreciate the invite and look forward to sharing our exceptional wine (Alexander Valley Chardonnay and Napa Valley Red) and educating people on the issues that gave rise to Burning Hawk wine initiative. Working in concert with organizations and festivals such as Eagle Optics and the Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival.

27
Oct
08

Eagle Rock by Ross Wilson & Daddy Cool

Every philanthropic wine project needs a rock song to help set the pace. Today we’d like to introduce you to our adopted anthem, Eagle Rock by Daddy Cool, which in May 1971 rocketed to the top of the Austrailian singles charts.

Discovered on a compliation album in my wife’s record collection on May 27th, I’ve since played Eagle Rock by Daddy Cool hundreds of times. Quite simply, it is the most rocking, raptor-influenced track in the history of rock n’roll. And it has kept us grooving, inspired and focused on making a difference! It’s our own version of the “Rocky” theme song.

Daddy Cool’s lead singer Ross Wilson keeps rocking and pumping out an amazing array of musical artistry. Check out Daddy Cool’s website , their myspace page or Ross’ website

One of the coolest things is that a few weeks ago Ross heard about the Burning Hawk project, donated a copy of his CD to the project team, and wrote the following:

“It’s great that the song I wrote and recorded 1971 is being used to inspire such a worthy project…We have also been very supportive of a raptor survival campaign here in Austrailia…BTW I LOVE wine which is one more reason I am sympathetic to you cause. Coolest, Ross”

Australia Post stamp commerating "Eagle Rock

Australia Post stamp commerating

24
Oct
08

Burning Hawk Perches on Hawk Hill

When Burning Hawk Wines first launched we recieved a supportive note from Allen Fish, Director of the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory who extended the invitation to visit the GGRO and Hawk Hill during their world famous migration of Raptors. So last Saturday morning I took off for Marin County and within a few hours found myself perched on Hawk Hill, scanning the talonscape and shooting the breeze with avian addicts. 

As I started hiking up to the lookout I found myself thinking about the fact that decades ago, Hawk Hill was used by military radar specialists to scan the ocean for unfriendly ships and submarines. Such an amazing contrast to Hawk Hill’s current use by birders and conservationists who on a yearly basis take pleasure in scouting for birds and gathering data about their habits to inform conservation work.

During my visit I spent a few hours up on the hill meeting volunteers, listening to an educational presentation and watching a hawk banding demonstration. Additionally I had the chance to bust out the binocs and do some hawk watching! We must have spotted atleast 6 different species of raptors. From Turkey Vultures and Red Tailed Hawks to “Sharpies” and others. It was truly a great day. I highly recommend this experience for anyone who lives in or visits the Bay Area. 

Below are a few photos. And thanks to Allen and team for their work on behalf of raptors and for their support of the Burning Hawk wine initiative

Hawk Hill Hawk Watchers

Hawk Hill Hawk Watchers

Immature Red Tailed Hawk Banded & Released for Research

Immature Red Tailed Hawk Banded & Released for Research

Former military lookout. Perhaps a site for a future tasting?

Former military lookout. Perhaps a site for a future burning hawk wine tasting?

21
Oct
08

Burning Hawk Visits With The Madrone Audubon Society

On Monday, October 20th we were invited to present Burning Hawk Wines to the Madrone Audubon Society, Sonoma County’s Chapter of the National Audubon Society. Approximately 100 Madrone Audubon members were in attendance and in good spirits at the First United Methodist Church. Prior to our presentation, Madrone members stood up to provide updates on local events as well as bird and fresh pastry sightings! Species recently sighted in Sonoma County have included the Bald Eagle, Pileated Woodpecker, Townsends Warblers and the Golden Sticky Bun:). 

One member alerted the organization to an amazing avian phenomenon taking place right now in Tracy, CA- The Tree Swallow Pre-Migratory Roost . This is evidently an out-of-this-world avian opportunity to get yourself over to a corn field in Tracy and witness over 1 million Tree Swallows in their pre-migrational splendor!!!  Here is one birder’s report on this amazing winged spectacle.

We were also treated to a fascinating powerpont presentation on Owens Lake by Auduboner Mike Prather from the Eastern Sierra Audubon Society.

Before signing off on this entry I want to thank Madrone’s President, Janeann Erickson who invited us to speak about Burning Hawk Wines. She has offered advice and perspective since the early days of our project. Like other supporters she spent a great deal of time on the phone listening patiently to our questions, giving us tips, putting us in touch with people and helping us learn about the issues. Janeann and other leaders like her have been instrumental in helping this project take flight.

21
Oct
08

Missoula Raptor Research Conference

As mentioned in a previous post we were invited to participate in the 2008 Raptor Research Foundation Conference in Missoula, Montana in late September.  During this conference we had the good fortune to dramatically boost our understanding of key issues from the many researchers, scientists and teachers visiting from all corners of the globe.

In addition, through silent auction of Burning Hawk Wines, the RRF was able to raise over $500. We were happy to know that our project is starting to gather momentum in terms of helping raise awareness and funds for the organizations who are working to conserve birdlife around the globe.

The funds will be used to help the RRF to achieve their primary goals which are accumulation and dissemination of scientific information about raptors to inform the public about the role of raptors in nature, and to promote the conservation of raptors whose populations are threatened by human activities. One of the key issues that RRF researchers and members are working on is the problem of Raptor electrocution and collission around the world.

We want to thank the conference team and participants for their encouragement and hospitality while we were in Missoula. In particular we extend our gratititude to Kate Davis, conference organizer and RRF’s President Leonard “Lenny” Young.

21
Oct
08

Recent News: Geese & The UAE

Here are a few links and articles we’ve gathered recently to highlight the problem that our project is working to address. Just as importantly you will see that we’ve included information regarding how the problem can be addressed. Remember that millions of birds a killed through powerline collision and electrocution around the world. And by preventing these deaths we are also preventing power outages, infrastructure disruptions, increased energy costs and fires that impact everyone.

Power Outage Caused by Goose

Downed Powerline Shuts Down Power in Woodridge

Most Power Restored to MJC Area

Groups Work Toward Osprey, Eagle Habitat   

UAE Signs Pact to Protect Birds of Prey

Suggested Practices for Avian Protection on Powerlines