Indiana Audubon has received a $41,000 challenge grant from the Efroymson Family Fund in support of the society’s initiatives in both combining technology with research into secretive bird movement and nesting and in 125th anniversary upgrades at the Mary Gray Bird Sanctuary.

The grant award will allow Indiana Audubon to expand upon collaborative marsh bird survey work began in 2022 to search for federally endangered Black Rails through automated recording units at The Nature Conservancy’s Kankakee Sands prairies and wetlands. On the heels of a successful pilot year, research will expand to additional sites. 

Additionally, as part of Indiana Audubon’s 125th anniversary, this grant will provide for the new interpretive birding blind at Mary Gray Bird Sanctuary. The new, accessible birding and photography blind will provide opportunities for bird education and programming.  Additional building upgrades will enable Indiana Audubon to host continued research and outreach in its mission to engage communities in the enjoyment of birds in their habitat, through conservation, education, and research, including a summer education program for school kids and the Hummingbird Migration Celebration.

In 1998, Dan and Lori Efroymson established the Efroymson Family Fund.  The fund continues a long legacy of charitable commitment by the Efroymson family in Indiana. To date, the Efroymson Family Fund has awarded more than $127 million in grants.

“Indiana Audubon Society is thrilled to be a 2023 grant recipient,” said Brad Bumgardner, Indiana Audubon Executive Director. “This funding propels the current and planned projects Indiana Audubon Society is working on to gain a better appreciation for bird migration and the habitats they need to survive.  We look forward to expanding our efforts in both conservation and education with the Efroymson Family Fund’s assistance.”

For more information about the grant funded projects or other Indiana Audubon programs, visit them on the web at


Media contact: Brad Bumgardner, executive director (219) 928-6905, [email protected]


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