American Birding Expo 2015
The American Birding Expo (often referred to as the Birding Expo, or simply the Expo, or by the acronym ABE) is a retail-sales-oriented showcase of products for birders and nature enthusiasts. Vendors representing all aspects of the birding and nature market will display their products, goods, and services at the Expo. The American Birding Expo is the largest and most diverse shopping experience available to North American bird watchers. The Expo is free and open to the public, though attendees who pre-register will be entered into a special VIP raffle. A portion of the proceeds from the ABE, generated by sponsorships, raffles and games, and voluntary contributions, will be earmarked for three distinct conservation projects at the local, national, and international level. The first annual American Birding Expo is scheduled for October 2 to 4, 2015, at the Grange Insurance Audubon Center in Columbus, Ohio.
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Passenger Pigeons in Ohio
Historian Caleb Atwater observed in 1838 that passenger pigeons still passed through Ohio in huge numbers in the spring and fall, adding that "[f]ormerly the pigeons tarried here all summer, building their nests, and rearing their young, but the country is too well settled for them now; and so, like the trapper for beaver, and the hunter, they are off into the distant forests, where their food is abundant, and where there is none to disturb them in their lawful pursuits." Actually, large nesting colonies survived in a few spots in the state after the middle of the century, even though there were growing numbers of humans who continued to persecute them.
By 1882, Wheaton, born in 1840 and author of Report on the Birds of Ohio, observed it had become "much less abundant and irregular." Less than twenty years later its extinction in the wild was complete. Lawrence Hicks in 1935 summed up its former abundance in “immense numbers in every section of the state and presumably breeding generally, though usually locally and in very large colonies,” citing confirmed large nestings historically in rural Licking, Pickaway, Morrow, Huron, Wayne, Medina, Columbiana, Portage, Trumbull, Ashtabula, and Geauga counties.
Last Records of the Passenger Pigeon:
Still extant is a mounted specimen, now at the Ohio Historical Society in Columbus, collected in the state in 1900, thought for many years to have been the last pigeon verified in the wild. Martha, a pigeon kept at the Cincinnati Zoo until her death in 1914, is considered to have been the last of all her kind.
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