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From the Editor

Introducing Living Bird News

by Hugh Powell
 

Twenty-five years ago, BirdScope began life as a supplement to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology’s flagship magazine, Living Bird. This year, as the magazine turns 50, the relationship is coming full circle. With the summer issue, we’ll stop printing BirdScope and move our news about the Cornell Lab into the pages of Living Bird and into our monthly eNews. For supporters who are not members, we’ll continue to send you Lab news via a glossy publication called Living Bird News.

We originally created BirdScope to tell people what we at the Cornell Lab were doing—what research projects were under way; what the ever-growing stream of citizen-science data was telling us; and to stay in touch with our citizen-science supporters. Since then, we’ve grown to encompass some 250 staff, 40,000 members, and six million annual web visitors. I’ve been privileged to work alongside past BirdScope editors including founder Rick Bonney, avian maven Laura Erickson, and longtime editor (now senior director of communications) Miyoko Chu. Our talented designers, including Joanne Avila, Diane Tessaglia-Hymes, Susan Spear, and science illustration interns have made each issue shine.

As the institution has grown, the Lab’s work increasingly holds its own alongside Living Bird’s stories from the wider world. It’s time to unite the two publications or risk splitting the attention of our readers. The change also allows us to make better use of resources—both the environmental and human varieties.

For those of you who aren’t Lab members and don’t receive Living Bird, we’ll keep in touch with Living Bird News. This excerpt of the full magazine will include all the Lab news found in Living Bird, plus bonus columns, photos, and artwork from the magazine. (To get the full magazine, just become a member.)

In addition, we encourage all our readers to sign up for our eNews for a monthly roundup of Lab news, videos, quizzes, species accounts, and more. If you don't get it already, you can sign up here.

Among all these changes, one thing that remains unaltered is our commitment to staying in touch with our supporters. Just as that first issue of BirdScope signaled a change in how rather than what we were communicating, this move streamlines the way we share our news, our passion, and our gratitude. Thank you.

—Hugh Powell

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