BCR 191: Tom Wood, Ash Canyon Bird Sanctuary Saved


Tom Wood is co-founder and co-director of the Southeastern Arizona Bird Observatory, a non-profit conservation organization. A native Texan, he has a B.S. in Wildlife Biology and was director of the Fort Worth Nature Center and Refuge for 14 years before moving to Arizona in 1988 to manage The Nature Conservancy’s Ramsey Canyon Preserve. In 1996 Tom and his wife, Sheri Williamson, founded the Southeastern Arizona Bird Observatory. They have collaborated on a book The Birds of North America, conducted a 23 year banding study of hummingbirds on the San Pedro River, conducted breeding bird monitoring on National Park Service sites, and worked on development of birding tourism in southeastern Arizona and Sonora. They have also taught biologists and banded in hummingbirds in Colombia and Ecuador.

NEWS: The former residence of the late Mary Jo Ballator was purchased by the Southeastern Arizona Bird Observatory in November 2019, thanks to an exceptionally generous donation. The site includes feeders for hummingbirds (most active March-September) and other species (year round), naturalistic water features, a pollinator garden, and a photo blind available by reservation. eBird lists 196 species for the site, including some of the Southwest’s most sought-after avian specialties.

Show Notes:

  •  Your early days. What were the origins of your interest in birds?
  • Southeastern Arizona Bird Observatory
  • Ash Canyon Bird Sanctuary and who was the late Mary Jo Ballator?
  • Ash Canyon most famous for?
  • How did the Southeastern Arizona Bird Observatory acquire the property.
  • Why was the Southeastern Bird Observatory the best choice to manage the Ash Canyon?
  • Can birders still visit? Are the bird blinds for photography still available?
  • What does it take to keep the hummers fed each day?
  • Tell us about parking and birding the sanctuary. What are the best times to visit, when?
  • How can one find up to date information on the Southeastern Arizona Bird Observatory and the Ash Canyon Bird Sanctuary?
  • How can one support the efforts of the Southeastern Arizona Bird Observatory to manage the Ash Canyon Bird Sanctuary.
  • Recommend getting the most out of a visit to ACBS?

Mentioned In Episode:

Southeastern Arizona Bird Observatory

Ash Canyon Bird Sanctuary

BCR 129: Sheri Williamson, Hummingbirds

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