Wednesday, November 8 – The annual Christmas Bird Count is coming up. Here with a preview is Keith Corliss, avid birder and volunteer instructor for the North Dakota Game and Fish Department. ~~~ Speaking of the bird population, today’s Natural North Dakota essay from Chuck Lura discusses the Winter Finch Forecast. ~~~ Another crop birds are fond of is sunflowers. It’s a crop poised for change, due to advances in genetic knowledge, as Amy Mayer reports for Harvest Public Media. ~~~ The fracking boom in North Dakota sent the population of oil patch communities soaring, meaning cities had to expand their public services at great cost. Those communities are now looking for stable funding to pay off loans. Inside Energy’s Amy Sisk reports. ~~~ Amazon recently closed the window for proposals from communities hoping to become the site of the company’s next big headquarters. They'll declare the winner in a few months . North Dakota made some rumbles about making a pitch, but it was pretty clear the criteria ruled out the state. However, some close neighbors gave it a shot, including Winnipeg. Greg Dandewich, works for Economic Development there and visits with Bill Thomas about the proposal, and calls it an intense and unique experience. ~~~ A feature on the Welk Homestead from this week’s Prairie Pulse television show.