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Minutes of the DVOC
April 1, 2004

Our guest president Ron French called the meeting to order at 7:40. 56 members and 5 guests attended.

The minutes of March 18 were approved as read.
Committee Reports
Conservation: Hart Rufe discussed an article called “If Bush Loses in November, Blame It on the Birders”. In a scene more apropos of Harvard Lampoon than a Presidential Administration, it described how one of George Bush's illustrious judicial nominees had once argued in court that bombing of an island in the Marianas did not violate the Migratory Bird Act. Besides, he eloquently stated, birders "get more enjoyment spotting a rare bird than they do spotting a common one". I couldn’t make up something like this if I tried.

Larus: No report.

Cassinia: No report.

Field Trips: Martin Selzer reported on recent and upcoming field trips.

Bill Murphy reported on a joint DVOC / DOS field trip to Cherry Island Landfill for gull study on March20. Highlights included a 3rd winter Thayer's Gull and a 1st winter Iceland Gull.

Frank Windfelder will run his annual Salem County trip on April 3. He plans on starting at 5:15 AM for Woodcock. Less hardy folk can meet him at 7:00.

The “Three Old Forts Trip” will be led by Doris McGovern and meets at 7:00 at Fort Dupont. The ferry will head to the next fort at 10:00.

Programs: Chris Walters announced the following upcoming programs:

April 15: Frank Gill will present “Citizen Science in Ornithology”.

May 6: Laurie Goodrich from Hawk Mountain will present “Saving Species While They are Still Common”.

May 20: Jim Chace will present a program on “Avian Diversity and Cowbird Parasitism in Southeast Arizona”.

WSB: This year's World Series of Birding team was introduced, and a call was made for pledges for our worthy causes.
"Birds of a Feather" in April 2004 Smithsonian Magazine

Membership Committee: Anita Guris continued her blistering pace for new membership, and set out to continue her streak by telling the attending guests to consider joining our club. She gave a warm welcome to our newest members; Gerri Peevers, Nikolas Haass, Christian & Francis Keidel, and Deborah Danila. She also announced two new candidates for membership, Linda Rowan and Chris Hugosson. If she keeps up this pace, we’ll need a bigger meeting place!

Archives: The first phase of the Julian Potter project is completed. The pictures by Colon Roland are scanned, and will be made available on CD.

Al Bilheimer said that a dead hawk he found was a first year Peregrine that was fledged from the Walt Whitman Bridge.

Dave Long announced that the Mercer Museum will run “Ducks, Decoys, and the Delaware” from April 17 through January 3.
"Ducks, Decoys and the Delaware" at the Mercer Museum

Local Notes
Brett Wolfe reported a Black-crowned Night-Heron along the Tacony Creek in Philadelphia.

Ron French reported on the female Tufted Duck in Bucks County, and Al Bilmeimer reported that he saw the bird on Saturday.

Bert Filemyr reported that Yellow-throated and Pine Warblers were in at Jake's Landing.

Ornithological Studies
Art McMorris gave an excellent study on the color morphs of White-throated Sparrows, their personality traits, and their selectiveness in mates. Basically, white-striped males are the stud-muffins of the White-throated world, and tan-striped females are the doting mothers. Anita Guris noted that she thought that intercolor selection of mates was the natural order of things.

Clay Sutton presented “Birding Cumberland County, NJ”. The program gave a wonderful picture of how things look both today, and historically. It was fascinating, for instance, to hear how at one time, Cumberland County was the only place to reliably find Snow Goose.

The meeting adjourned around 9:40.

Respectfully submitted,

Paul A. Guris