Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Bill Fenimore Wins ABA Award

The American Birding Association has selected Wild Bird Centers of America franchisee Bill Fenimore, owner of the Wild Bird Center of Layton, Utah, as this year's recipient of the prestigious Ludlow Griscom Award.

The American Birding Association (ABA) Ludlow Griscom Award is one of five ABA awards that recognize contributions dedicated individuals make to the cause of birds, birders and birding. The ABA Ludlow Griscom Award for Outstanding Contributions in Regional Ornithology was awarded to Fenimore for his contributions to dramatically advance ornithological awareness throughout the state of Utah.

Fenimore is a birding advocate and proven leader who expresses his enthusiasm through involvement with numerous programs and organizations, including a leading organizer of the Great Salt Lake Bird Festival, author of "Bird Sighting" a weekly Salt Lake Tribune column, vice-chair of the Utah Division of the Wildlife Resources Advisory Council, leader of birding expeditions throughout the U.S., Canada and the Caribbean, author of Backyard Birds state identification guides, just published in Spring 2008. Fenimore also serves as Trustee and Board member of such diverse organizations as the Utah Wildlife and Conservation Foundation, Ogden Nature Center and Utah Wildlife Board Nominating Trustee (appointed by Utah Governor Jon Huntsman).

Fenimore was overwhelmed when he received the call announcing his win, claiming he literally fell into his office chair. Fenimore says, "I am gratified to be considered in the same company as birding icons Roger Tory Peterson and Kenn Kaufman, previous recipients whom I greatly admire and who inspired me to create my State Backyard Bird Guide series. I feel tremendous emotion and awe to be selected for such an honor." Fenimore continues, "Birding has been the pathway for me into a life long enjoyment of the natural world. It has been a passion to share the joys of birding, especially with young children whom I hope will follow in a similar path."

George Petrides, Sr., founder and chairman of Wild Bird Centers of America, proudly nominated Fenimore for the award, citing his "boundless energy and enthusiasm for all aspects of birding which have significantly raised the visibility of birding causes and interests throughout the state of Utah and beyond." Fenimore has been a successful franchisee with the Salt Lake City area Wild Bird Center since 2001. He earned the company's national "Best Environmental Stewardship" award four years in a row, and received the company's highest honor in 2007 when he entered its "Hall of Fame," a tribute based on his experience and performance as a top-level executive and extraordinary role as a "Birding Ambassador" in his home state.

The ABA Ludlow Griscom Award is sponsored by Leupold Optics, who will present Fenimore with a plaque and pair of Leupold binoculars at the June 2008 ABA convention in Snowbird Lodge, Utah.

Fenimore joins many important contributors to American ornithology, including first award recipient, Roger Tory Peterson, who received the honor in 1980. Peterson is credited with publishing 52 volumes of the Peterson Field Guide Series as well as providing the inspiration and leading to the formation of countless birding associations and wildlife refuges.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Seed Prices

From The Prairie Star

While many commodity prices were influenced by the Prospective Plantings and Stocks reports released March 31 by the USDA, sunflower remained relatively unchanged.

The planting intentions report was termed bullish for corn, slightly bearish for wheat and soybeans, and neutral for sunflower.

The USDA's report indicated nationwide corn acreage will decrease by eight percent from 2007, while soybean plantings will jump by 18 percent and wheat acreage will see a six percent increase.

Sunflower acres in the U.S. are expected to grow by four percent from last year to 2.15 million acres - 1.85 million acres for oil varieties, up five percent; and 305,000 acres for non-oil sunflower, up fractionally from last year.

In North Dakota, acres for oil sunflower varieties is expected to grow by one percent to 410,000 acres, but non-oil plantings will shrink by 24 percent to 125,000 acres.

“Getting an increase in acres in a very competitive acreage environment is gratifying,” said Tim DeKrey, president of the National Sunflower Association.

Larry Kleingartner, executive director of the NSA, noted the soybean acreage number was larger than expected while corn was lower than expected which affected prices.

As expected, prices declined for soybeans while corn prices were stronger. Sunflower prices, as of April 3, remained unchanged from the week prior.

NuSun and linoleic sunflower prices for April delivery were still at $23.65-$23.95 for April delivery, and $24.25 for May delivery.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Scott's Bird Seed Voluntary Recall

Major manufacturer of wild bird seed and animal food products, The Scotts Company LLC announced a voluntary recall of certain varieties of Morning Song, Scotts, Country Pride and various private label branded wild bird and animal food products due to the use of unapproved pesticides.

Here is an official statement from Scott's:

Dear Fellow Bird Lover,

You might find that your favorite Scotts, Morning Song or Country Pride wild bird or wild animal food isn't available where you normally buy it.

We are in the process of replacing these products because we determined that we needed to stop applying certain insect controls. These controls were used to make sure that our bird and animal food wasn't infested with moths and other problem-causing insects.

The insect controls that we had used are EPA-approved for use on some stored grains, including grains that may be turned into human food. However, the insect controls are not EPA-approved for wild bird food or wild animal food.

We believe that the wild bird food and wild animal food did not constitute a significant health risk to wild birds, small animals or humans who handle the food.

We have discontinued use of the unapproved insect controls.

We expect that our products will be back on the shelves in time for a colorful, song-filled spring.

Please call our toll-free help line at 1-888-270-2714 if you have any questions.

Mario Olmos
Sr. Ornithologist
The Scotts Company