Mountain Plover! Williamson’s Sapsucker! Baird’s Sparrow! Migrants galore! Rarities guaranteed!
The 2018 Colorado Field Ornithologists (CFO) convention will be based out of Longmont, Boulder County, in the northern Front Range metro region. The venue is ideally situated for getting us to such iconic birding destinations as Rocky Mountain National Park and the Pawnee National Grassland. We have also arranged access to private and spectacular holdings such as The Nature Conservancy’s Phantom Canyon Ranch. Trips will appeal to every sort of birder—from adventurers seeking to cross the Wyoming state line to “slackers” who prefer to stay close to Longmont (and to enjoy a late start and leisurely breakfast).
All are encouraged to register! If you are a veteran Colorado birder, we’ll help you get “county birds.” If you are an out-of-area birder, we’ll make sure you get reliable birds like American Dipper, Ferruginous Hawk, Virginia’s Warbler, Burrowing Owl, Cinnamon Teal, and more. And if you’re a curiosity-seeker or S.O.B. (spouse of birder), we offer scenery, fine companionship, and, yes, a bit of bird study. No matter who you are or what your level of interest, we look forward to getting to know you! Note: All field trips will be limited to a modest number of participants, so as to ensure the best possible birding experience. Register early!
Amazing field trips are what attract so many of us to the CFO convention, but just as awesome is the opportunity to interact with more than 200 birders and field ornithologists from all over Colorado and beyond. We’ll kick things off with a Welcome Picnic on Thursday, carry on with a Friday evening social “hour,” and cap it off with our Saturday night banquet. We’ll also offer a student mixer, fieldbased workshops, and a stimulating scientific paper session.
Our keynote speaker is Scott A. Taylor, a professor in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado–Boulder. Dr. Taylor will be talking to us about a bird familiar to all of us, the Black-capped Chickadee. Familiar, yes, but also a source of important insights into the interactions among ecology, evolution, and climate change. Dr. Taylor will be with us throughout the convention, and he looks forward to getting to know you.
Young birders! Yay! CFO offers a steeply discounted convention rate to all birders age 18, and under as well as to all full-time students of any age. CFO particularly encourages students to attend the student mixer and to consider presenting at the scientific paper session. The art for the 2018 convention was created by young birder Jordan Spalding. Order your convention apparel (including a long-sleeve tshirt, a CFO convention first) featuring Mr. Spalding’s striking art.
A word about the conference venue. Most convention activities will be based at or will originate from the Best Western–Plus hotel in Longmont (303-776-2000). We especially encourage folks to make time for the Friday Evening Drop-in Happy Hour; featuring appetizers and a cash bar, this is the place to wind down after the field trips. The Best Western is ideal for quickly and efficiently embarking on field trips. It is within easy walking distance of restaurants and brew pubs, and the ever-birdy St. Vrain Greenway is nearby. All conventioneers staying at the hotel enjoy a free hot breakfast, starting at 5am to accommodate early field trip departures. To qualify for a discounted room rate, just mention that you are with CFO.
Note that the banquet, annual meeting, and keynote address will be held at the historic Dickens Tavern and Opera House in Longmont, a short distance from the hotel. Note also that Welcome Picnic (fajitas, including veggie options) will be held at the nearby Boulder County Fairgrounds; no alcohol allowed. CFO aims to reduce the environmental impact of large gatherings like the convention, so we urge participants to use reusable containers at the picnic and on field trips.
We can’t wait to see you in Longmont! Online registration begins in March. Register early! Given the date and venue, we expect field trips to fill fast! When you register, please consider making a donation to our Convention Youth Fund—to help subsidize registration and travel costs for young birders.