The Godwit Days Spring Migration Bird Festival, to be held in April, has been postponed due to the Coronavirus (COVID19) pandemic. Planning will start soon for an event this fall that we hope you will attend.
Welcome to Godwit Days!
Come celebrate the Marbled Godwit and explore the lush Redwood Coast. Observe many bird species and other wildlife through our selection of field trips, lectures, and workshops led by experienced local guides during our annual week-long festival each April. Tour the expansive mudflats, the wild river valleys and the rocky ocean coast of this sector of the Klamath bioregion in northwest California.
Keynote Speakers – 2020
Friday evening, April 17, 2020, for our plenary talk “Working Collaboratively to Cover More Ground”, we will be joined by Stuart Mackenzie, an international figure in ornithology who will be exploring the world of migration of winged animals, birds, bats and insects by researchers using new and innovative technological tools. This very entertaining talk will take us from the Arctic to the edge of the Antarctic using the recent research tools with a special focus on the Motus Wildlife Tracking System, a cooperative automated radio telemetry system, that allows scientists to follow winged animals throughout their life cycle as they travel around the globe. With more than 800 monitoring stations across 28 countries, knowledge is being obtained that was hardly imaginable just a very few years ago as more than 20,000 animals of 200 species have been followed on their migrations.
Stuart is the Director of Migration Ecology in the nationwide research organization, Bird Studies Canada, headquartered at Long Point, Ontario. Bird Studies Canada conserves wild birds through sound science, on-the-ground actions, innovative partnerships, public engagement, and science-based advocacy. He began exploring the natural world in the womb, and has been birding since the age of two. He is responsible for aspects of the Motus Wildlife Tracking System, Long Point and Thunder Cape Bird Observatories, and the Canadian Migration Monitoring Network. Stuart has conducted a wide variety of research, monitoring, and training projects on a wide variety of taxa throughout the Western Hemisphere.
He is a polished and entertaining speaker and will be bringing images of migration in areas until recently almost totally hidden from sight.
Richard O. Prum , Ph.D.
Join us for a fascinating journey as our keynote speaker gives an entertaining talk on Saturday, April 18, 2020: “The Evolution of Beauty: How Darwin’s Forgotten Theory of Mate Choice Shapes the Animal World – and Us.” He is an evolutionary ornithologist with broad interests in avian biology. He provides a wonderful voyage showing how Darwin’s theory of natural selection only partially explained the diversity of birds we see today. His second theory in “The Descent of Man” involved what he termed sexual selection. This, as recast and researched by Dr. Prum in the last few years, goes a long way to explaining this diversity with entertaining and scintillating insights into animal, and especially our own human, behavior, both sexual and social.
His book was named by The New York Times as one of the 10 Best Books of 2017. He says his interests have involved: “… research on diverse topics, including avian phylogenetics, behavioral evolution, feather evolution and development, sexual selection and mate choice, sexual conflict, aesthetic evolution, avian color vision, structural color, carotenoid pigmentation, evolution of avian plumage coloration, historical biogeography, avian mimicry, and the theropod dinosaur origin of birds”.
He is an avid birder, a Professor of Ornithology and Head Curator of Vertebrate Zoology at the Peabody Museum of Natural History at Yale University. This talk will provide an enjoyable tour de force through many innovative ideas that will shape how you look at the world around you, and at yourself. Expect an evening well spent!