Environment & Science

Bird conservation group, looking to diversify its flock

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Audubon California is expanding the programs at its center in L.A.’s Highland Park neighborhood. It’s looking to increase the local flock of bird enthusiasts.

KPCC’s Molly Peterson reports on the group’s progress.

Molly Peterson: About 25,000 kids live near the Audubon Center in LA’s 200-acre Debs Park. The center’s director, Jeff Chapman, says a summer program of free movies in his building’s courtyard has brought more neighboring families into the park.

Jeff Chapman: The movies have been an opportunity for us to introduce them to the park and then they end up coming to our other programs, coming to our summer day camps and things like that.

Peterson: With bilingual Spanish-English events, Audubon’s local chapters in California are recruiting younger, urban, and non-white birders. Chapman says the strategy’s also a national one.

Chapman: We are moving into new diverse communities, urban communities, not typically where you’d think of Audubon being. We are working hard to engage new people in conservation work.

Peterson: L.A.’s project is in its third year. It’s encouraged Audubon to build similar centers in Arizona and Texas, and to plan others in the west and southwest.