Bird enthusiasts and Cheyenne Bottoms visitors rejoice: "The Birds of Cheyenne Bottoms," a book by Robert L. Penner II, has finally arrived. Contributions from the Chickadee Checkoff Program of the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks and Fort Hays State University's Kansas Wetlands Education Center made the book's publication possible.
Penner serves as the avian programs manager for the Nature Conservancy of Kansas at Cheyenne Bottoms. His 156-page book includes summarized species accounts of the 333 species of birds that are known at Cheyenne Bottoms. The accounts include regional, state and national abundance information for each species as well as dates and numbers of high counts of birds.
The book also includes original sketches of several birds from Penner's own collection of ink drawings. The book provides useful resource information to experienced birders and beginners as well as those interested in the wildlife at Cheyenne Bottoms.
The gift shop at the Kansas Wetlands Education Center at Cheyenne Bottoms has books available for $9.95 plus tax. Shoppers may also visit the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks Outdoor Store in Pratt. Proceeds from book sales will go toward education programs at the Kansas Wetlands Education Center.
Cheyenne Bottoms is a 41,000-acre wetland complex in central Kansas and is a major stopover for migrating birds in North America. It has been designated a Wetland of International Importance.
The Education Center is on the southeast edge of the Cheyenne Bottoms Wildlife Area. The center is operated as a branch of FHSU's Sternberg Museum of Natural History. It is dedicated to educating the public about wetland ecosystems and their importance.
The Chickadee Checkoff Program includes a volunteer donation line on the state individual income tax form devoted to non-game conservation efforts. The program is administered through the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks
For more information, contact Curtis J. Wolfe, manager of the Kansas Wetlands Education Center, at (877) 243-9268.