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Minutes of the DVOC
May 3, 2012

President Art McMorris called the meeting to order at 7:30 PM. Twenty-one members and two guests were present.
The minutes of the 19 April 2012 meeting were approved as submitted.


No Report.

Chairperson Phil Witmer encouraged all DVOC members to make pledges in support of the DVOC Loons World Series of Birding Team. Phil passed around pledge sheets in support of the DVOC Loons World Series of Birding (WSB) Team and the Hawk Mountain Sanctuary American Kestrel Program to be funded through pledges in support of the team. The funds will be used to support the reprinting of the American Kestrel nest box and conservation color brochure, which will help landowners participate in the Hawk Mountain Sanctuary American Kestrel Conservation Program. A pledge form can be downloaded from the DVOC website:

President Art McMorris added that the DVOC Loons WSB team was mapping out their strategy for the World Series of Birding. Art mentioned that team captain Bill Reaume wanted to thank members who had volunteered to help the team with scouting and said that Bill was still looking for volunteers to aid in scouting. Interested parties were urged to contact Bill by email at workbill_2000@yahoo.com

Bonnie Witmer mentioned that the Farmer’s Market in Rittenhouse Square would be hosting a University of Pennsylvania presentation on climate change on Saturday. More about that event can be found here: http://www.citypaper.net/blogs/criticalmass/JUST-DO-IT-Climate-Impacts-Day--Rittenhouse-Square-Park.html

Field Trips:
Committee Member Bob Horton conducted the trip reports and trip announcements:
Trip Reports:
April 21 – Coastal Delaware Field Trip: A joint field trip with Wyncote Audubon Society led by Lynn Jackson. Lynn Jackson reported that the trip began at Prime Hook NWR and worked its way north to Bombay Hook NWR. Highlights of this field trip included nesting warblers and migrating shorebirds, with a total of 83 species observed during the trip.
April 28– Rails and Nocturnal Species at the C&D Canal Field Trip led by Steve Kacir. Steve reported that the trip went ahead as scheduled, meeting at 3:30AM and was one of the best rail trips that he’s led. Highlights from the trip included 4 Virginia Rails, 13 King Rails, 1 Common Gallinule, 1 Least Bittern and 9 Soras. In addition to hearing these birds, the participants saw 1 King Rail in southern New Castle County and 1 Clapper Rail at Bombay Hook NWR as part of a special diurnal extension of the trip.
April 28 – Fort Washington State Park Field Trip: A joint field trip with Wyncote Audubon Society led by Jane Henderson. Martin Selzer reported that the trip had about 20 participants meeting at Ridge Rd, and highlights included Black-throated Blue Warbler, Black-throated Green Warbler, Yellow-rumped Warbler, Rose-breasted Grosbeak and Blue-winged Warbler.
April 29 – Belleplain State Forest Field Trip: A joint field trip with Wyncote Audubon Society led by Martin Selzer. Martin Selzer reported that the trip found Louisiana Waterthrush, Worm-eating Warbler, Yellow-throated Warbler and Yellow-rumped Warbler while birding Narrows Rd and enjoyed observing a Yellow-billed Cuckoo near the end of the day.
Trip Announcements:
May 6 – John Heinz NWR at Tinicum, Southwest Philadelphia, PA. Leader is Frank Windfelder. This trip meets at the refuge parking lot at 6:30AM and will focus on spring migrants.
May 14 – Gloucester County “Run” in NJ. Leader is Sandra Keller. This trip meets at the group parking area on the west side of Carpenter off Route 47 at 8:00AM and will search for migrants and breeders including Kentucky Warbler, Hooded Warbler, Louisiana Waterthrush, Swainson’s Thrush and other thrushes, vireos and flycatchers.
May 19 – Ridley Creek State Park, PA. Leader is Art McMorris. This trip meets at the Ridley Creek bridge on Gradyville Rd (near Newtown Square, PA) at 6:30AM and will run about half a day long, focusing on migrants and breeders such as Kentucky Warbler, Hooded Warbler, Swainson’s Thrush, Yellow-throated Vireo and Alder Flycatcher.
May 20 – SW New Jersey. Leader is Tony Croasdale. This trip meets at 7:30AM at the Wawa on CR 670/Mauricetown-Crossway Rd near the intersection of route 47 and 347. The trip will search for migrants and rarities discovered by various World Series of Birding Teams the week before, including shorebirds at Heislerville WMA and breeding warblers.

Ornithological Moments:
No report.

Vice President Phil Witmer announced the upcoming programs.
On May 17 Dr. Edwin Scholes III will present “The Birds-of-Paradise Project: Revealing an Avian Wonder of the World.”
On June 7, Terry Master will present “Riparian Songbirds: Canaries in an Aquatic Coal Mine.”
On July 5, Bert Filemyr will present “From the Archives: The Strange Case of DVOC Member Charles J. Pennock” as part of the informal summer meeting.
Phil stated that he is still looking for speakers for the club’s informal summer meetings. Programs can be short or long and deal with any variety of topics. Contact Phil if you can present a program at a summer meeting.

Phil mentioned that a small group of members would be presenting short 5-10 minute discussions of the pros and cons of some apps and/or technology for use in birding at some of the informal summer meetings.

On Oct 4, Sue Killeen will present “Birding Cuba for Cuban Endemics.”

Mike O’Brien announced that the seniors of Holy Family Home Nursing Home are building bluebird houses to sell and he presented two bluebird houses for sale. The bluebird houses will be high quality and cost $35 each with a discounted price of $20 for individuals or nature centers that would like to purchase six or more, allowing nature centers to put them up for sale at a profit. The birdhouses will all be handmade by seniors at the nursing home.
Debbie Beer announced that the Friends of Heinz Wildlife Refuge and John Heinz NWR staff are concerned about potential development of the lands along the Lindbergh Blvd barrier and would be interested in saving that area.
Linda Widdop announced that the Shorebird Stewardship Delaware Bayshore Beaches were closed to the public for shorebird migration and that she would be volunteering with the project at the Villas on May 20.
Local Notes:
Marty Dellwo reported that John Heinz NWR at Tinicum had 18 species of warbler, Yellow-billed Cuckoo, Blackburnian Warbler, possible Prothonotary Warbler, 3 Cape May Warblers, Swainson’s Thrush, Hooded Warbler, Prairie Warbler, Golden-winged Warbler and Whip-poor-will.
Linda Widdop reported that Lemon Hill is a good birding spot, attracting warblers and grosbeaks but has only about three trees making the birding relatively easy. Linda reported Lemon Hill recently hosted Nashville Warbler and Magnolia Warbler.
Steve Kacir reported that a male Yellow Warbler observed along the trail to the Raymond Pool Observation Tower at Bombay Hook NWR was singing Prothonotary Warbler song.
Mike O’Brien reported that Blue-gray Gnatcatchers were building a nest at Bartram’s Gardens and that there were lots of warblers there as well.
Linda Widdop reported that the Pennypack Trust had a Louisiana Waterthrush out in the open, seen up and down the creek at the Creek Rd entrance.
Art McMorris reported mentioned that is barber asked him how to stop a Northern Mockingbird from singing, as the bird was still singing at 2:00AM. Art recommended, “Find him a mate.”

Main Program:
Vice President Phil Witmer introduced tonight’s speaker, Steve Kacir who presented the program “Bush Camping and Spotlighting: A Queensland Safari.”

The meeting was adjourned at 9:20 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Stephen E.T. Kacir, Secretary