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Do you know how to “read” a dead tree?

Do you know how to “read” a dead tree?

One ranger, naturalist, and arborist at a time, we are engaging others in turning dead trees into teachers.  Even fallen ones!  This weekend we added Ranger Jennifer Prewitt of Orange County Parks, California, to the list!  When a dead tree in her park became a casualty of  a recent storm, she got permission from Senior […]

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The Humane Gardener can be you!

The Humane Gardener can be you!

When Nancy Lawson contacted the Cavity Conservation Initiative early in 2016 to discuss our focus on the ecological benefits of dead trees, we knew she was working on the final chapter of her book, The Humane Gardener.  Nurturing a Backyard Habitat for Wildlife.  The chapter, The Gift that Keeps on Giving:  Encourage Life in the Decay, […]

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A village in Illinois forges a park from weeds and waste

A village in Illinois forges a park from weeds and waste

Let us take you back to the beginning. In 1998, in the small village of Wilmette, Illinois, a three-city-block long, 20-foot-wide strip of woodland is unattended and derelict. It has succumbed to invasive vines, weeds and non-native trees, and is a convenient dump for yard waste, dead trees and litter.  To its neighbors, Susan Gaines-Gatto […]

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Working for birds is a trip!

Working for birds is a trip!

Literally and figuratively!   This past weekend we took on the long drive to San Diego to attend the San Diego Audubon Society’s annul birding festival in Mission Bay.  This is one of several events to which we travel annually.  But this one is splendidly organized and has something for everyone!  You might consider attending […]

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Tree Care for Birds training opportunity

Tree Care for Birds training opportunity

Sims Tree Care is one of California’s premium leaders in offering to the tree care industry just the type of training that we advocate. Here are two upcoming dates and locations in Northern and Southern California where this training will shortly be available. Please see flyers attached.      

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Nest boxes for House Wrens.  An unhelpful plan.

Nest boxes for House Wrens. An unhelpful plan.

We are happy to say that this native cavity-nesting bird, the House Wren, does not need the added assistance of nest boxes.  And we further want to offer reasons why we should avoid increasing their housing opportunities by artificial means. This charming songster is the most abundant cavity-nester in North America!  It’s population is 160,000,000 […]

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Our historic tree succumbs to the storm

Our historic tree succumbs to the storm

This pitiful dead tree in a county park in California held great meaning for us; but yesterday’s record-breaking  storm in California was beyond its endurance.   This is the tree that we and the wonderful park rangers worked so hard to shore up and preserve for another year.  It was not to be. Now more […]

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Existing and forecasted challenges for cavity-nesters

Existing and forecasted challenges for cavity-nesters

The Southern California Bluebird Club and the Cavity Conservation Initiative have a complimentary mission.  The first focuses on providing nest boxes for cavity-nesters, and the second advocates for the safe retention of dead trees which provide vital nesting habitat for these birds. After 20 years of providing nest boxes to stem the decline of bluebirds […]

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Hummingbirds finds meals in dead trees

Hummingbirds finds meals in dead trees

We have known for some time that hummingbirds dine on spiders found in their webs, and that they also use spiderwebs found at hole-entrances in dead trees.  Adding silk is a great way to give elasticity to a tiny tea-cup-size nest that must accommodate growing nestlings.  Look closely at the nest in the second photo and […]

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The Smithsonian Gardens stands up for dead trees!

The Smithsonian Gardens stands up for dead trees!

Arborists and wildlife advocates!   The Smithsonian Gardens boasted about saving a dead tree.  They, too, recognize its ecological benefits! Open this link to see why and how they went about it:  https://smithsoniangardens.wordpress.com/2014/02/17/a-second-life-for-a-dead-tree/

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