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MINUTES OF THE DVOC MINUTES April 20. 2000

The meeting was called to order by President Ron French.
44 Members and 6 Guests were present.
The minutes of the meeting held 4.6.00 were read and approved.

Nominations: Jim Lyman and Mike Lyman were both elected to membership in the club.


Committee Reports
There were no reports from Larus or Archives.

Conservation: Jan Gordon announced that all 6 Purple Martin houses are now in place although the 'dawn song equipment' has not yet been installed.

Field Trips: Colin Campbell brought fliers for his upcoming Pocomoke Trip (May 5-7). This trip includes a search for the Port Mahon Black Rail. Rumor has it that copious amounts of crabs and beer are necessary to spot this mythical beast so come prepared.

Don Jones brought directions for his May 21 trip which will begin at Hawkins Road instead of the Vincentown Diner and continue on to Bright View Farms.

Frank Windfelder brought a belated report on his March 25 trip to Salem Co, NJ where the rarest sighting was the 26 trip participants. He also announced that he will be leading a trip to Pennypack on May 13 - maps will be available at the next meeting. Bicknell's Thrush is always a possibility on this trip.

Ornithological Studies: Chuck Hetzel noted that the Smithsonian Institute was starting a study on the "Coastal Plain Swamp Sparrow". "Been there…done that…" was the response of several club members.

Programs:
Colin Campbell announced the following upcoming programs:

May 4 'Hurricane' Paul Lehman on 'Weather and Bird Migration'
May 18 Sheri Williamson on 'Everything you ever wanted to know about Hummingbirds but were afraid to ask".
June 1 Bob Thornton on "Chasing Warblers"

Announcements:
For those people wondering if they should get out of bed tomorrow to go birding, Paul Guris passed around tomorrow's migration forecast based on BIRDCAST and NEXRAD information.

Ward Dasey is still looking for volunteers for his proposed Pinelands Summer Bird Census to be held over 2 weekends in late May/early June with particular emphasis on Whip-poor-will sweeps. He's prepared to pull out the big bucks, offering $2 to anyone willing to sign up.

Roy Frock took an opportunity to thank Jane Henderson for the excellent job she's doing on the Larus. He also wanted to know if anyone knew of the status of nesting peregrine falcons on City Hall.

Joe Majdan announced that the Texas Bird List was reporting that a private developer was threatening serious 'changes' in Bentsen, which could seriously impact the birding in that park.

Bob Mercer announced that May 13 was International Migratory Bird Day. A Bird Count will be held in Phila. And volunteers are needed. Frank Windfelder asked who was conducting the Phila. Count so that he could report his field trip results.

Paul Guris got a call from Wes Biggs who says he still has some space on an early May 'Dry Tortugas Trip'. He is willing to drop the price from $525 to $395 with an additional offer to provide campers on later trips with a special price of $150.

Anita Guris announced that she had just won a new computer through KYW radio!

Local Notes:
Mike Lyman had 3 Snipe at Peace Valley and 8 more at Pine Run. He also had White-eyed Vireo, Blue Gray Gnatcatcher and Red-throated Loon.

Jan Gordon reported that Pat Fore of the Water Department says that one of the Kestrel boxes at the Baxter Plant is occupied. Jan and Doris McGovern will be visiting the area to check on the 20 Tree Swallow boxes that have been erected. Also, while visiting one of the islands in eth Delaware River, pat found Canada Geese breeding and flushed a Woodcock from a nest.

Jan also reported that she and Ken had just returned from a trip to China where they had gone to observe the new dams being built along the Yang Tse River. The bird life was extremely scare with only 49 species re4corded in 2 weeks and many of those birds seen were in an area that will be flooded out by the new dams.

Jane Henderson still has 5 Pine Siskins at her feeders in Flourtown.

Roy Frock reported that Laurie Larson was asked to pick up the body of a swallow from a NJ re-habber. The bird turned out to be a N. Rough-winged Swallow recovered on Jan 21 near Trenton. He also reported that a Cooper's Hawk banded in September 1993 was found dead in St. Johns, New Brunswick on Jan 7, 2000. So rare was the find for that area that the body will be mounted for display.

John LaVia had a Yellow-throated Warbler and 1 Red Crossbill in Belleplain on April 8.

Augie Sexauer had Swamp Sparrows at Hawkins Road today.

Ward Dasey reported Red Crossbills at Apple Pie Hill and speculated that this species, loving VA Pines as it does, might one day be found breeding in the Wharton Tract area, so keep an eye out.

Paul Guris still has 24 Purple Finches coming to his feeders.

Joe Majdan had a Rough-legged hawk in Bluebell last Friday and Meadowlarks returned to his property on April 19.

Fred Crown had White-crowned Sparrows in his yard in Bensalem.

Frank Windfelder took advantage of a day off today to go to Cape may looking for Henry Elfins which he found. He also had Prothonotary, Kentucky, Black & White Warblers, Ovenbird, Hermit Thrush, Solitary Vireo and Red-breasted Nuthatch in Belleplain. Piping Plover in Cape May, Pine Siskins at Jake's Landing Road but only 9 Whimbrels and a few Yellowlegs at Brigantine.

Paul Guris announced, for those people who have mastered birds, butterflies and plants, there is a new book out called Dragonflies through Binoculars.

Doris McGovern had Black-throated Green Warbler, Redstart and House Wren in Media. She also passed on a hearsay report of a Sandhill Crane seen flying over Wexton and Red Crossbills at Nottingham. A bit further afield she mentioned that a Wryneck was found dead in Indiana, suspiciously close to an inter-continental army base.

Andy Ednie reporting for the Birdline noted White-winged Crossbills in Rockledge, PA and in Newark DE. He also reported that on Saturday Port Mahon Road held Sedge Wren and American Bittern. The Oystercatchers are also still hanging around near the end of Port Mahon Road. If they chose to stay and breed it would be the first Kent County record. Bombay Hook has been very quiet lately and most of the action is down at Logan Tract where Avocets, Black-necked Stilts, Pectoral Sandpipers and Hooded Mergansers can be found. Thousand Acre Marsh has calling Soras.

The evening's program was presented by Larry Niles on the "Ecology of the Shorebirds of the Delaware Bay". It presented a very sobering look at the serious threat to bird life, especially migratory Red Knots, Ruddy Turnstones and Sanderlings, by the drastic decline in the Horseshoe Crab populations in the Delaware Bay.

Respectfully submitted,


Lynn Jackson for Adrian Binns
4.22.00


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