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DVOC Main Page > Meetings / Programs > June 6, 2015

Minutes of the DVOC
June 6, 2015

Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association

There was quality over quantity at the special 6 June 2015 meeting of the DVOC held at The Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association at 31 Titus Mill Road, Pennington, NJ 08534 at 9:00 am. Five DVOC members were in attendance: Bob Horton, Steve Kacir, Holly Merker, Annie Reeves, and Thomas Smith. Steve Kacir brought donuts and coffee enough for five times the number of attendees, and requested that members consider donating in support of the DVOC Photo Contest if they appreciated the gesture. Particular thanks needs to be made to Holly Merker who donated $20 to the cause. The program for the meeting featured Rachel McGovern who presented an instructive program on stream surveying, entitled "Surveying our Streams: A Workshop in Biological Stream Monitoring." The program included slides as well as various aquatic invertebrate specimens which were passed around the group. Afterwards, Rachel led the club in a hands-on stream invertebrate identification session, and the club members enjoyed examining various stream invertebrates on which our local birds depend, and which can be used to assess stream quality. Of particular note was a large crayfish that Annie Reeves sampled, as well as a Hellgrammite, which was instantly the star of the show - though the multitudinous Scud in our samples surely put on a great showing as well. Bob Horton talked a bit about these invertebrates, their life cycles, and how they relate to fly fishing. Meanwhile, Thomas Smith was probably the most studious of us, dutifully recording a fine list of invertebrates. Unfortunately, our time with the stream biota was brief, due to a family emergency that limited Rachel McGovern's availability for the day. Afterwards, Annie Reeves, Holly Merker and Steve Kacir explored the trails on the grounds of The Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, enjoying the bird life and insect life while simultaneously hoping that the rain stayed light and intermittent. The birds were somewhat secretive, but included singing Blue-winged Warblers, Yellow-breasted Chat, White-eyed Vireo, Willow Flycatchers, Ovenbirds and Prairie Warblers. The Field Sparrows were exhibiting all manner of breeding behaviors which was fortuitous for those of us interested in such things, as well as being relevant to eBird's June eBirder of the month challenge: "The eBirder of the month will be drawn from eBirders who submit at least 20 complete checklists containing at least one breeding code during June" (see also: http://ebird.org/content/ebird/news/zeiss201506/). In addition to the birds, there were many interesting insects including a Scorpionfly, Black-bordered Lemon Moth, Eastern Comma, Hobomok Skipper, and a dark-morph Banded Hairstreak. Annie Reeves found the Scorpionfly, and Holly Merker deserves credit for identifying most of the lepidoptera that we encountered. Whether it was in the lecture hall, the wet lab, or out in the field; everyone who participated had a great time.

Respectfully submitted:
Steve Kacir
DVOC Vice President