VIDEO: Urban Bird Treaty City celebration @ Lincoln Park

10:53 AM: A big turnout of birders got the party started early at this morning’s Urban Bird Treaty City celebration at Lincoln Park. The “treaty” covers the entire city of Seattle, but Lincoln Park was chosen for the event, which began with two guided bird walks at 10 am (that’s one group in our photo above), and is about to segue into the 11 am ceremony. The Urban Bird Treaty program is almost two decades old, and has these three goals:

*Protect, restore, and enhance urban/suburban habitats for birds.

*Reduce urban/suburban hazards to birds.

*Educate and engage urban/suburban citizens in caring about and conserving birds and their habitats.

Read more about the program here. Updates ahead, as this morning’s event continues!

12:19 PM: Just back from the park, where the celebration continued with the actual signing:

The pens were wielded by Robyn Thorson, director of the Pacific Region for the US Fish and Wildlife Service, and Jesús Aguirre, Seattle Parks and Recreation superintendent. That followed almost an hour of speeches, punctuated by an adorable performance:

Two short nature songs were presented by preschoolers from Whizz Kids Academy in Magnolia. They weren’t the only youth representatives:

15-year-old Louis Kreemer, a Roosevelt High School student, was introduced as the youngest student in the current local Master Birder class. He noted that the Urban Bird Treaty comes with some direct expectations for us all, including keeping cats indoors, architecture design that minimizes risk to birds, and some “Lights Out” nights, because of the importance of protecting birds. A political representative spoke too:

Linh Thai, from US Rep. Adam Smith‘s office, noted that “conservation is a nonpartisan issue,” and said, “If the birds and bees are gone, we’re next.”

Before the official signing, Superintendent Aguirre told what he called his “bird story”:

A few more photos and notes to come. And on the subject of what else you can do – here’s how to protect birds from colliding with your windows.

8 Replies to "VIDEO: Urban Bird Treaty City celebration @ Lincoln Park"

  • Sheila G May 5, 2017 (12:20 pm)

    Ha! I was looking for ‘a big flock of birders’ in your introductory sentence!

  • Off leash cats May 5, 2017 (12:35 pm)

    Hooray for Seattle to signing onto this treaty!  Seattle is a resting point for many birds that migrate north and south.  The sheer variety and beauty of them is frequently captured and shown on the West Seattle Blog by Mark Wangerin and others.

    For all of the uproar about off-leash dogs in Seattle, I hope that some of the noise will be directed at off-leash cats.  Part of the treaty membership is supposed to include the following:

    “The city and their partners have or will develop an educational program
    to control free-roaming cats and/or actively publicize the American Bird
    Conservancy ‘Cats Indoors!’ program. “

    US Fish and Wildlife Service.Urban Conservation Treaty for
    Migratory Birds version 2
    .  page 16. Downloaded at:

    • WSB May 5, 2017 (1:02 pm)

      That’s mentioned in the story.

  • Jake May 5, 2017 (1:53 pm)

    Tracy thanks for the great coverage. My wife was there, and she was appalled at how much of the remarks she missed while focused on taking a few pictures.  Meanwhile there you are, a professional reporter, somehow doing it all – capturing pictures, video and words with unerring accuracy,  in real time. She had to rely on your reporting to fill in what she missed.

  • Trileigh May 5, 2017 (2:26 pm)

    What a great event. Parks, Seattle Audubon, the Wa Dept of Fish and Wildlife, and Heron Habitat Helpers all deserve much appreciation for organizing Seattle’s signing of this important treaty. Thanks to all who turned out for the birdwalks and the rest of the celebration!

  • michael oxman May 5, 2017 (2:28 pm)

    Full 55 minute video. Seattle Urban Bird Treaty Signing Ceremony

  • Heartless? May 5, 2017 (5:18 pm)

    Leash a cat?  Really?

    • WSB May 5, 2017 (5:19 pm)

      Yes, actually. You’ve never seen a cat on a leash? Although I believe that was just humorous shorthand for “indoor.”

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