AVA Initiatives

AuSable Valley Audubon programs cover a wide range of subjects including birds, wildlife, plants, and environmental issues.

Activities include:

Tawas Point Birding Festival

The Tawas Point Birding Festival/Celebration is a big volunteer focus for our chapter. It is usually held the third week of May at the height of Spring Migration.  Birders come from all over the globe to get a glimpse of warblers and other migrating birds.  Birders come to Tawas Point because it is an international birding area of importance due to its geography.  Basically, it is one of the few places birds have to rest and refuel during their very long migration between wintering and breeding locations.  Our chapter focuses on educating the public.  We share the importance of this unique location and how to help protect birds during migration and we help new birders learn about resources and tips to help them with their personal birding journey.  Planning begins as soon as each year’s festival is completed.

Piping Plover Advocacy

photo of Piping Plover adult and chick
Plover and chick at Tawas Point State Park.

The endangered species Piping Plover nests in various locations within our home area. Many volunteers put in countless hours to provide monitoring and public awareness by educating the public how to help protect the plovers.  Our members provide local assistance with the support and guidance of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, and the MDNR at various local locations when the endangered Plover is observed.  We are especially busy during the fragile nesting period from nest site building through fledge. Check out our Piping Plover page here.

M-55 Adopt-A-Highway

Adopt-A-Highway M-55
Adopt-A-Highway M-55

Our organization sponsors the cleanup of roadside trash over a two mile area of M-55 between Tawas City and West Branch under the guidance of the Michigan Department of Transportation’s Adopt-A-Highway program. We host a Spring and Fall Cleanup, we do not pick up in Summer.  The Spring cleanup is always in April and Fall is end of September.  We average 18 bags per pick up plus tires and car parts.

Upcoming Window: Spring – April 13 – 21; Fall – Sept. 21 – 29, 2024

Dates are weather dependent, if you are interested in volunteering, contact Bill Roth (989) 387-5980.

Check out our volunteers in their yellow finery.


Our chapter is blessed with a few members that share their knowledge at various venues.  In 2024, there is a Special Species Series being held at the Alcona County Library in Harrisville.  More details can be found on the “Presentation” page.

In addition, a speaker is invited to each monthly meeting to share expertise regarding topics of interest to our group.

Public Place Improvements

Our chapter is committed to help preserve and improve habitat for our feathered friends.  You can find our volunteers planting trees, helping remove invasive vegetation, updating feeder stations and other activities often at public places.

Seating Bench Donations:  In 2023 our chapter donated a bench to Harrisville Harbor, along with a seating area at Tawas Point in memorial of one of our cherished members.

Tree Planting Project:  In 2024, we planted ten trees at Tawas Point State Park.  

This was the last year of a three year project involving the planting of around a hundred trees.  

Species included:  oaks, maples, basswood, aspen & jack pine.  About 20 volunteers participated in this project.

Bird Feeder Station Update:  In 2024 and 2025, we will be updating the bird feeder station at Tawas Point State Park in cooperation with Michigan Department of Natural Resources and Huron Pines.  Our part is providing benches that can store food for the annual birding festival, replacement of the bird feeders, and development of a safe bird feeding campaign (the feeding station will be a demonstration of some of the recommended practices).  We received partial funding assistance through a grant from the Community Foundation for Northeast Michigan ($1,000) for this project.

Fun Fairs

A group of volunteers attend fun fairs in the area to promote conservation and bird protection.  Perchville fun fair is held in East Tawas each February and Osocoda has a Family Fun Fair each April.  Our volunteers engage with kids to help educate and provide an ethical foundation.  We also promote birding as a hobby.

Bluebird Kits

These kits provide young people the opportunity to build a kit in a classroom setting through various schools in our area. There is much more information and activity photos on the project page here.

We invite you to participate in these activities. Please check out our contacts page if you have questions or wish to participate.