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Minutes of the DVOC
January 17, 2013


President Art McMorris called the meeting to order at 7:30 PM. Twenty members and four guests were present.

The minutes of the 3 January 2013 meeting were approved as submitted.

Committees:

Trustees’ Report:

Trustee Chris Walters conducted the annual Trustees Report. The total earnings of the DVOC Endowment Fund for 2012 totaled $7214.97. Of those earnings, $1,955.57 will be reinvested, and $5261.47 will be paid to the DVOC Treasurer. DVOC club assets as of 31 DEC 2012 totaled $179,484.74. Total receipts for the year came to $19,872.98, while total disbursements were $19,567.07. Chris provided hard copies of the Trustees’ Report, which were available to any members who wished to take a copy.

Membership Committee:

No Report.

Bob Billings Award Committee:

President Art McMorris briefly described the Bob Billings Big Year Award Competition and asked members to contact him if they planned to take part in the 2013 competition. Those who competed in the 2012 Bob Billings Big Year competition have until the end of January to submit their lists.

Conservation Committee:

No Report.

Field Trip Committee:

Chairperson Win Shafer conducted the field trips reports:
Trip Announcements:
19-21 JAN 2013 – Montauk (Long Island, NY). Leaders are Chris Walters and Erica Brendel. This annual excursion to Montauk takes place over Martin Luther King weekend and will focus on over-wintering species on Long Island: winter finches, eiders, scoters, alcids and rarities. The trip is a shared expenses trip and will carpool to Montauk from Northeast Philadelphia, leaving on 19 January at 6:00AM.
19 JAN 2013 – Cape May, NJ. Leader is Martin Selzer. This field trip is a joint field trip with DVOC and Wyncote Audubon and will explore Cape May for over-wintering species and rarities. The field trip will begin at 8:30AM and meet at the Cape May Point State Park Hawk Watch Platform.

20 JAN 2013 – Cumberland County, NJ. Leader is Tony Croasdale. This field trip will search for the Cumberland County Sandhill Crane flock. If the cranes are found early, the trip will move to Jake’s Landing to look for Short-eared Owls. The field trip meets at noon at the Wawa at Route 47 and the Mauricetown Crossway. An option for pre-trip birding exists: meet Tony at the same location at 8:30AM. The pre-trip birding group will head to The Villas WMA to look for birds such as Red-headed Woodpecker.
Trip Reports:
12 JAN 2013 – Philadelphia Mid-Winter Census (PMWBC). Census organizer Keith Russell talked about this 27th year of the mid-winter census of birds within the Philadelphia borders. A total of 111 species were recorded for the 2013 census. Highlights included Cackling Goose, Red-throated Loon, Great Egret, a probable Black-headed Gull X Ring-billed Gull hybrid, Northern Saw-whet Owl, Northern Shrike, 3 Cave Swallows, Northern Rough-winged Swallows, 3 Orange-crowned Warblers, Common Yellowthroat, Vesper Sparrow, Red-breasted Nuthatches, Black-capped Chickadees, Common Redpolls, Pine Siskins, White-winged Crossbill. A Short-eared Owl was spotted two days after the census. Both Black Vulture and Turkey Vulture numbers were low for the count. Big misses for the census included Brown Thrasher, Common Goldeneye, Cedar Waxwing and Wilson’s Snipe. Keith plans to use the accumulated data from the PMWBC to help bolster support for preservation of open space in Philadelphia.

Ornithological Moments Committee:

Chairperson Rob Bierregaard reported that the committee was fleshing out ideas for new Ornithological Moments short presentations. Those interested in presenting a short Ornithological Moment should contact Rob.

Programs:

President Art McMorris announced the upcoming programs.

Feb 7: Phil and Bonnie Witmer will present “Bonnie and Phil Go Birding: Winter Birding in New Mexico.”

Feb 21: Joel Fry, Curator of Bartram Gardens will talk about Alexander Wilson and his history at Bartram Gardens.

Announcements:
Mike O’Brien announced that the seniors of Holy Family Home Nursing Home are selling bluebird houses. The bluebird houses are 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 are all handmade by seniors at the nursing home.


Local Notes:
Linda Widdop reported that the three Northern Lapwings in New Egypt, Ocean County, NJ were still there today. Linda also reported that a Bald Eagle flew over Lemon Hill yesterday.

Janet Starwood reported that a confiding Rough-legged Hawk was a Peace Valley Park as recently as ten days ago.

Win Shafer reported that the Pink-footed Goose and a flyby heard-only White-winged Crossbill were observed at the pond at the back of Dorney Park on Sunday. Win mentioned that the Pink-footed Goose has been seen at this location fairly reliably. That day, Win also saw the Greater White-fronted Goose at Trexler Park.

Bob Horton reported that a Pink-footed Goose was still being seen around Assunpink WMA and nearby bodies of water.

Rick Mellon reported that two Sandhill Cranes have been seen in the same area as the Northern Lapwings in New Egypt, NJ.

Mike O’Brien mentioned a Crested Caracara had been seen in Cape May.

Art McMorris mentioned that the wintering flock of Northern Rough-winged Swallows at the Northeast Philadelphia Wastewater Treatment Plant where Cave Swallows are also wintering this year is the northern most winter location for Northern Rough-winged Swallow. The next most northern location for that species is in Texas. The wintering swallows were first discovered by Barbara Granger.

Linda Widdop reported that she had searched for the Crested Caracara in Cape May, but had not found it, though she did see the Townsend’s Warbler that day.


Ornithological Moment:

No Ornithological Moment.


Main Program:

President Art McMorris introduced tonight’s speaker, Alan Clark who presented an informative and timely talk entitled, “Bird Migration Through Urban Landscapes.”


Adjournment:

The meeting was adjourned at 9:26 PM.


Respectfully submitted,


Stephen E.T. Kacir, Secretary