By Guest Blogger & SFBBO Board Member Shubha Tuljapurkar
As a nature photographer, I often visit the Don Edwards Wildlife Refuge in Alviso. Early one morning, I was photographing a crowd of Snowy Egrets, Great Egrets and gulls feasting and frolicking at high tide. I marveled at how lucky I was to enjoy that sight within ten miles of where I lived, and that's when it hit me. If we didn't protect our habitats from the pressures of climate change and people, these birds may not be frolicking here in the future. I resolved to get involved.
I looked for ways to leverage my background in marketing and management in the technology industry, and my previous leadership positions at several Bay Area start-ups and at nonprofit organizations promoting digital literacy at underserved schools in California...
I found SFBBO while researching conservation and birding nonprofit organizations in the area. Their focus on birding research and conserving and reclaiming the tidal marsh habitat appealed to me. And I could serve them by helping the organization increase the visibility of their mission in the Bay Area community, and by participating in strategy development at the board level.
In the past year, I have seen bird banding in action at the Coyote Creek Field Station, where we hosted a field trip for middle school children with an education partner, Marshmallow Minds. The children were thrilled to see the birds up close, and I could see several bird researchers and conservationists in the making. SFBBO’s education outreach program is growing, and we hope it will be a strong force in shaping young minds to be conscientious in saving the environment. I have learned a lot about the effects of climate change on bird populations in our area, as with the endangered California Least Terns SFBBO scientists observe and monitor at the Eden Landing Ecological Reserve.
SFBBO's Birdy Hour talks are excellent deep dives into the behavior of various bird species. I am impressed by the dedication and expertise of the team of scientists on SFBBO's staff, and their research on waterbird and other species.
I joined SFBBO's fund development committee and look forward to helping them expand their industry connections and funding from corporate sources, as well as increasing awareness and donors in Silicon Valley. And I used my photography background to lead a photo walk during SFBBO's Bird Photo Big Day, a component of the fundraising strategy that is fun and gets great participation from the local community.
Get involved in bird research and conservation; SFBBO has numerous volunteer opportunities which are fun and get you connected with nature.
Wingbeat is a blog where you can find the most recent stories about our science and outreach work. We'll also share guest posts from volunteers, donors, partners, and others in the avian science and conservation world. To be a guest writer, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.