Birds of the Lehigh Valley second edition available now

The Lehigh Valley Audubon Society's second edition of "Birds of the Lehigh Valley and Vicinity" is now available, and the updated version includes 120 wonderful color photos of some of the most commonly observed birds in the region.

These photos will help novice birders and curious nature observers to identify the birds that inhabit and pass through this region, whether as year-round residents or accidental tourists thrown off course by storms or faulty genetics.

The authors of the book, Peter G. Saenger from Muhlenberg College's Department of Biology, Lehigh University psychology professor Barbara C. Malt, and Montgomery County Department of Parks Environmental Educator Kevin C. Crilley, have produced a 192-page guide to birds and birding in the Lehigh Valley that features an annotated checklist for 349 species, as well as bar graphs for seasonal occurrence and abundance, and the status of the birds' residency.

The wire-bound books list direction to specific sites for optimal birding, and offer general observations for each site as to terrain and potential hazards.

The book is available at the Moravian College and Muhlenberg College bookstores, the Moravian Book Shop and The Bird House in Bethlehem, Dan's Camera City stores in Allentown and Easton, and Albright's Hardware Store in Allentown, as well as online at the LVAS new web site: http://www.lvaudubon.org. The book is $18.95 per copy, plus $4 shipping for the first copy and $2 shipping for each additional copy.

Proceeds from the sale of the book support LVAS conservation and public outreach programs.

Mentored Youth Fishing on Saturday: The season's long, late winter forced postponement of the Mentored Youth Fishing Days statewide.

The MYFD will take place this Saturday on 41 waters across the Commonwealth, including the Lehigh Canal near Sand Island in Bethlehem.

According to the Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, nearly 1,800 children have obtained the free permit to fish on Saturday, and another 1,300 have purchased the voluntary youth fishing license, the proceeds of which go toward youth fishing programs in the state while bringing in additional federal money.

"We're excited that so many mentors and kids are making plans to participate in the program," said PFBC Executive Director John Arway. "This program is designed to encourage adults to take kids fishing, to show them that fishing is fun, and to promote active, outdoor recreation. With warmer weather now here, we are prepared to deliver a great experience."

The local program was originally scheduled for March 22, and the statewide program for April 5. Arway said last year, the first year for the program, brought rave reviews from participants. The creel limit for participants is two trout at least 7 inches long.

A special stocking will take place in all participating waters on Friday, with fishing closed to the public from noon this Friday until 8 a.m. on Saturday. Those waters will only be open to mentored youth and their accompanying adults from 8 a.m. until 7:30 p.m. The waters will be reopen to the public after 7:30 p.m. Saturday with normal creel limits.

Mentors must be 16 years of age or older and possess a valid Pennsylvania fishing license and trout/salmon permit to accompany one youth. The 15-and-under crowd must obtain a free PFBC permit or a voluntary fishing license at one of the regular licensing agents (check your local bait shops and some retail sporting goods stores), or online at http://www.GoneFishingPA.com.

The voluntary fishing licenses are $1, but cost $2.70 due to agent/transaction fees. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's Sport Fish Restoration Act program will give the PFBC $5 for every voluntary youth license sold, and all the money will roll directly into youth fishing programs and initiatives.

For more information on Mentored Youth Fishing Day and the list of participating waters statewide, go online to http://www.GoneFishingPa.com.

gary.blockus@mcall.com

Twitter @ gblockus

610-820-6782

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