Protecting our birding community

Illinois Audubon Society Members and Friends,

The mission of the Illinois Audubon Society is to promote the perpetuation and appreciation of the native flora and fauna of Illinois and the habitats that support them. Central to that mission are our efforts to bring people together to see, steward, and learn about the birds, plants and animals that surround us. Experiencing nature with other like-minded individuals is fun, energizing, and has even been shown to provide health benefits.

However, with the world fully embroiled in a collective effort to stop the spread of COVID-19, we must act now to support community containment efforts aimed at slowing the spread of this virus.

As a result, the Illinois Audubon Society (IAS) is taking measures to protect our members, our staff and our communities from COVID-19.  We are enacting a broad series of precautionary measures to help limit potential spread of the virus.

The Society has cancelled all IAS Field Trips scheduled between now and 1 May. This includes:

  • Prairie Chicken Viewing from the Blinds, March 28 & 29, April 4 & 5
  • Walking in the Footsteps of Ridgway, March 25
  • Dixon Waterfowl Refuge, March 25

All registrants for these field trips have been notified and will receive a full refund of registration costs.

As you are all aware, this is a rapidly changing issue and decisions regarding the fate of field trips scheduled after May 1, 2020, will be made at a future date. Anyone affected by those decisions will be individually notified as soon as a decision is made and, in the event of a cancellation, full refunds will be issued.

I regret having to take such strong measures, but the health and well-being of our members and staff are of upmost importance during this time.

The silver lining in all of this might be that spring will proceed regardless and bird migration, spring wildflower shows and all the rest of the wonderful things that spring brings will all still take place – and can still be enjoyed while also implementing socially-appropriate containment measures.

So please do as federal, state and local agencies are requesting and do your part in helping to contain the spread of this virus, but also find the time to enjoy spring in an appropriate manner.

Jim Herkert, Executive Director
Illinois Audubon Society

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