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Minutes of the DVOC
May 6, 2010

President Frank Windfelder called the meeting to order at 7:35 pm. There were 24 members present. The minutes of the Aptil 15th meeting were accepted as posted on the DVOC website.

Committees:

Membership:
Chair Connie Goldman announced that Council has accepted the membership of Hank Ballerstedt, making him our newest member.

Conservation:
Chair Phil Witmer announced an open house at Tinicum’s Cusano Environmental Education Center Tuesday May 11th from 2:00 -4:00pm and also again from 6:30-8:30pm that day. The open houses are for the purpose of sharing ideas with interested persons about the refuge’s comprehensive conservation plans for the future.
Members discussed the conservation implications and reason for the season’s increased water levels at Timucum NWR. There is little shorebird habitat this spring.
American Bird Conservancy has a list of species at risk from the recent gulf oil spill. They also have a list related to bird migration, “10 Ways People Can Protect Birds This Spring.” (see their website)
The National Audubon Society is interested in volunteers willing to help oil-spill injured birds. (Information about registering for various volunteer activities related to the spill, on their website)
Tri-state Bird Rescue & Research is in need of help – they are overseers of the spill rehab efforts. (see their website)
The Bird Conservation Alliance will be meeting 6/9/10 – Phil usually attends but is unable to go. If you are willing to be a club rep, please contact Phil Witmer.

Field Trips

Trip Reports:

Saturday, 4/17 – Coastal Delaware, led by Lynn Jackson. No one at the meeting had a report. Lynn’s trip report is posted on our DVOC website.
Sunday, 4/18 – Jeff Holt led a trip to Riverwinds in NJ – Connie Goldman reported that this was a quiet day, warbler-wise but birds seen included multiple good looks at Hermit Thrush, and other expected early spring birds, including Field Sparrow, were seen and heard. Jeff’s report is on our DVOC website.
Sunday 4/18 – Delaware trip for rails and other night birds was led by Steve Kacir. No one at the meeting attended this trip. Steve’s trip report is on our DVOC website.
Saturday, 4/24 – Jane Henderson led a trip to Fort Washington State Park. Lots of Yellow-rumped Warblers and a low-flying Osprey were seen, many expected woodland birds, including copulating Flickers. Jane’s report is on the DVOC website.
April 30th through May 2nd – Southern Delaware weekend trip was led by Colin Campbell. No one at the meeting was on the trip. Colin’s report is on our DVOC website.
Trip Announcements:

May 8th – Steve Kacir will lead a Photography-focused trip to Heislerville – be in touch with him, as weather my cause a change in date. Details are on our website.
May 9th – Frank Windfelder will lead this half-day trip to Tinicum NWR. Details on the website.
May 15th – Connie Goldman will lead a trip to the Bowman’s Tower Wildflower Preserve area. Targets will be warblers and woodland birds. A small fee may be charged. Details will be updated this coming week on our DVOC website.
May 17th – Monday – Sandra Keller will lead this Gloucester County “run” including Glassboro WMA and other areas. Details are on our website.

Programs:

Art McMorris announced on behalf of chair Todd Fellenbaum that tonight’s Ornithological Study is the last scheduled for this meeting season.

Vice President Art McMorris announced the following upcoming programs:

On 5/20 – Hernan Arauz “Birding in Panama: The Avian Crossroads”
On 6/3 – Cathy Haffner “Sharing the Shoreline: Status, Research and Recovery of Great Lakes Piping Plovers”
Our informal Summer meetings will be held at Palmyra Nature Center in July and August, and at Tinicum in September. The August meeting will include “Tom’s Birding Quiz II” following the popularity of his birding quiz at last years’ summer meeting.

Announcements:

Erica Brendel announced and displayed a new 2010 brochure created by Carpenter’s Woods. The brochure highlights the natural history of the area, including birds. There will be a photo exhibit featuring scenes from the Carpenter’s Woods, at the Allen’s Lane Art Center, this Friday, 5/14/10. There is also now a “checklist of the birds of Carpenter’s Woods” available.
Bert Filemyr announced that Angelica Huston has been cast in the role of Deborah Love Shearwater in the upcoming movie based on the book “The Big Year.”
Al Driscoll announced that he has a 2 volume set of Brown and Amadon’s “Eagles, Hawks and Falcons of the World – for a $20.00 donation to DVOC, he will give it away. Marty Dellwo immediately accepted the offer.
Phil Witmer announced that there are spaces available on the Pocono trip for the spring. Contact Phil for details.
Bert Filemyr announced that this weekend, May 15th is the annual World Series of Birding. The DVOC Lagerhead Shrikes have a blog this year, detailing what is going on as the team prepares for the competition. On the day of the event, the team is planning post updates as they go, such as where they are, etc.
Judy Stepanoski began a discussion announcing this weekend’s, May 8th, Migration Count. Mart Dellwo read a listing of areas managed by Doris McGovern. Numerous areas could use help and the count is Nation-wide, so if you are willing to count, coordinators in your area are likely to need help.
Local Notes:

Paul Guris – recent birding of the Unami Valley revealed good migrants present including 9 territorial Worm-eating Warblers. On a day of birding, both Yellow-rumped (early migrant) and Blackpoll (late migrant) were heard/seen.
Marty Dellwo recently saw his lifer Virginia Rail, at Tinicum NWR. A weasel or mink sighting was also very interesting.
Al Bilheimer – witnessed Downy Woodpecker mating, unusual to see.
Debbie Beer saw Blue Grosbeak at the Phila Navy Yard, a good sighting for that area; also Ring-necked Pheasant. Frank W. reported Blue Grosbeak is considered extirpated as a breeder in Philadelphia.
YY and Jane Huang recently birded Glassboro Woods and had Kentucky, Hooded and Worm-eating Warbler.
Judy Stepanoski recently saw in center city Philadelphia, at Independence National Park, White-crowned Sparrow, Blackpoll and 6 Ovenbirds.
Phil Witmer had Fish Crow in Havertown, a new experience for him in that area.
Tom Bailey – recent birds at Palmyra Nature Center included Red-Headed Woodpecker, Blue Grosbeak, Virginia Rails. Today, birds there included Cerulean Warbler and Least Bittern.
Al Driscoll reported getting access to a private area near a country club, through connections his wife has (so be nice to her if you want to bird there!) - for some good birding. Included sightings were Kentucky and Worm-Eating Warbler. Al also thanked club members Bert Filemy and Tom Bailey for advising him on Colorado birding. Al got a lifer there, and Al has so many ABA birds on his list, he rarely gets lifers!!! The bird was Dusky Grouse, and is his #820 in the ABA area!
Erica Brendel gave a Screech Owl update for Carpenter’s Woods – the nest hole was observed on a recent evening for ½ hour. In that time, the two adults made 42 trips to the hole to feed insects, etc to their young!
Frank Windfelder reported recent sightings at Pennypack on the Delaware, including Ruddy Turnstone, female Red-breasted Mergansers and Bonaparte’s Gulls on the ball field and then on the water. Frank reports this area can be especially interesting in rainy weather.
Ornithological Study – Paul Guris presented an identification puzzle he came upon in Costa Rica, while observing Pauraques and “petites,” smaller nightjars in separate types of habitat with different morphology. Several experts were contacted to help with the ID of these little “mystery” birds with unique characteristics. See Paul’s presentation on the DVOC website for the resolution of the puzzle!

Next, a unique introduction of our Program Speaker, Andy Wilson was made. A very readily identifiable U.S. historic figure, who showed up as a surprise guest, narrated eloquently on the noble importance of our participation in the BBA, and the grand significance of the words of report that were about to enter our ears.

Program

Andy Wilson presented “The Results of the Second Pennsylvania Breeding Bird Atlas: A Sneak Preview.” Data analysis of BBA information continues, and the date of printing of results is still in the future. But Andy was able to enlighten us on some results that have pointed out changes in bird nesting in our state since the previous Pennsylvania atlas. The effects of development and re-forestation projects reveal expected gains and losses, but also some surprising data. Did you know there are more Grey Catbirds than American Robins nesting in Pennsylvania? Highly sophisticated analysis tools are correcting for variables, in hopes of making the data more scientifically clear. Andy’s forecast that our atlas may set a new standard for this type of work and analysis in the future, was great to hear.

Respectfully submitted,
Connie Goldman, for Secretary Bob Horton