The Delaware Valley Ornithological Club (DVOC) is one of the oldest ornithology organizations in the United States. Founded in 1890, the club has held regular meetings at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia for over 125 years, and has published the periodical Cassinia since 1901. Membership is open to any dues paying person with an interest in birds. The club organizes birding field trips throughout the Delaware River valley region, including a dedicated year-round trip schedule within the city limits of Philadelphia (BirdPhilly).


  • Please send in your 2019 bird checklists

    The DVOC member who saw the most bird species in the DVOC program area during the calendar year is crowned the winner of the BOB BILLINGS BIG YEAR AWARD! The prize: $200 and bragging rights! All members are urged to send in their 2019 checklists to Billings committee chair Art McMorris (mcmorris AT mac DOT com) by Jan. 31. No advance sign-up is necessary; just be a member and go birding! For simplicity you can just let Art know your total number of species, and if you’re the leader, you can send in your checklist later, but everything must be received by Jan. 31. Full details, including what constitutes the “DVOC program area,” are on the website at https://dvoc.org/about/committees/billings/

    And for the new year, it’s the same simple 2-step process:

    1. Go birding!
    2. Send in your checklist at the end of the year.

  • Passing of a Member – Barbara Haas

    It is with sadness that we report the passing of DVOC Member Barbara Haas today, January 8, 2020, after a brief illness.
    Her husband and fellow club member, Frank Haas is planning a memorial service in a few weeks. 

    Barb joined the DVOC in 1983 and was a life member. She was designated both a Fellow and a DEVOC. She served the club in many ways, most notably in the role of Treasurer from 1987 to 1996.

    A Memorial Service for Barbara Haas will be held on Saturday, February 1, 2020, at the Holiday Inn in Morgantown at 1 pm. For more information go to www.FranklinHaas.com.

Meetings

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March 05, 2020

March 05, 2020 @ 12:00 am
The Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, 1900 Benjamin Franklin Pkwy,, Philadelphia, PA, 19103

Speaker: Randolph Scott Little

This presentation will trace the history of bird sound recording from the early days of optical soundtracks for talkies during the Great Depression to the modern era of using a smartphone and the internet.  The epicenter of this development in the United States, indeed in the world, was and is at the Laboratory of Ornithology at Cornell University.  The speaker has been directly involved in that activity for the past seven decades, working alongside the original principals, learning from them and passing along that knowledge to new generations of bird sound recordists.

Randolph Scott Little grew up in the village of Forest Home, nestled between the campus of Cornell University and the uplands including Sapsucker Woods.  The two-classroom Forest Home Elementary School (which now serves as headquarters for the Cornell Plantations) was located nearly in the shadow of Fernow Hall, which housed the Lab of Ornithology.  After school, Randy frequently ventured to Fernow Hall, where the inquisitive youngster was welcomed, befriended and encouraged to cultivate an understanding and appreciation for birds by Arthur A. “Doc” Allen and Peter Paul Kellogg.

That understudy continued throughout his secondary schooling years, and prepared him well to enter Cornell.  So well in fact that Dr. Kellogg advised him to forego the inevitable redundancy of undergraduate ornithology and instead study electrical engineering, to better understand the physical principles and technology for the study of biological acoustics.  Throughout his undergraduate years he served as student assistant to Dr. Kellogg, maintaining the Library of Natural Sounds and its equipment.

Dr. Kellogg next advised gaining industrial experience at a leading research laboratory, such as Bell Labs, which he did, although his adviser probably didn’t anticipate that becoming a 37-year career in itself.  Throughout that career, Little’s weekends and vacations were frequently spent in the pursuit of bird sound recordings, which he contributed to the Library of Natural Sounds, now the Macaulay Library.

Jim Gulledge Dr. Kellogg’s successor, enlisted his help as a participant/leader in an Earthwatch expedition to record Chiricahuan birds in 1977, and subsequently invited him to become a non-board member of the Lab’s steering committee for the Library of Natural Sounds.  In 1987 Ted Parker suggested that Little be asked to help teach others to make better recordings, and has taught in the Lab’s now-famous Natural Sound Recording Workshop ever since, passing along many tips originally picked up from Dr. Kellogg and adding many of his own.

Little is a life elective member of the American Ornithological Society, a former director of the Laboratory of Ornithology, the New Jersey Audubon Society and the Cornell Society of Engineers, and a life senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers.



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Field Trips

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February 29, 2020
February 29, 2020 @ 10:30 am - 3:00 pm

Trip Leader: Judy Stepenaskie

Free to all members and non-members

Meet in the parking lot at the Visitors Center and bring lunch. Join us to witness the spectacle of huge numbers of snow geese as they prepare to head north. We expect to see over 100,000 snow geese, plus several thousand tundra swans and a few Bald Eagles. Other waterfowl we expect include: Pintails, Scaup, American Wigeon, Black Ducks, Common and Hooded Mergansers, Ruddy Ducks, Buffleheads and Ring-necked Ducks. The tour road isn’t open, but there will still be plenty to see. For those interested, we may stay till dusk to see the Short-eared Owls.

The Visitor’s Center is located on Museum Road, off of Hopeland Road in Kleinfeltersville, PA. Bring lunch. For those interested, we may stay till dusk to look for Short-eared Owls.

Here is the website for the PA Game Commission with directions and info:
https://www.pgc.pa.gov/InformationResources/AboutUs/ContactInformation/Southeast/MiddleCreekWildlifeManagementArea/Pages/default.aspx


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March 01, 2020
March 01, 2020 @ 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm

Trip Leader: Patty Rehn

Free to all members and non-members

Each year in the late winter, the American Woodcock move northward at the beginning of their breeding season. One of their migration stops is the Rancocas meadow– a reliable spot to catch the male of the species perform a fascinating aerial display to impress the female Woodcocks. Join Rancocas naturalist Patty Rehn at dusk for an informational session and unique viewing opportunity. Bring binoculars and dress for the weather. This is a joint program with Rancocas Nature Center. Please call 609 261-2495 to register or REGISTER ONLINE.


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BirdPhilly is an initiative of the Delaware Valley Ornithological Club. Founded in 1890, the DVOC has been based at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia since 1891. The DVOC runs fields trips throughout the tri-state region, however BirdPhilly focuses on trips within in Philadelphia city limits in collaboration with Philadelphia Parks & Recreation and the Fairmount Park Conservancy.

Through BirdPhilly our goal is to increase interest and awareness of Philadelphia’s birds by providing quality birding experiences on expertly guided field trips. All field trips are free unless the site charges an admission fee. These trips are open to children, adults, and well behaved pets. BirdPhilly also participates in DVOC’s Philadelphia Bird Race to raise funds for conservation and research projects.

Visit the BirdPhilly webiste


The club enthusiastically welcomes new members – young people, beginners and anyone else who is genuinely interested in birding. Members benefit from the wealth of information and expertise that this club offers. The bi-annual club journal, Cassinia, is provided to members.

Birding

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© Bert Filemyr

The Delaware Valley is the name given to the region that lays on either side of the Delaware River, centered on Philadelphia. This consists of southeastern Pennsylvania, central and southern New Jersey and the state of Delaware. Tell me more…


The following counties fall within our boundaries.

In Pennsylvania;
Berks County, Bucks County, Chester County, Delaware County, Lancaster County, Lebanon County, Lehigh County, Montgomery County, Northampton County and Philadelphia County.

In New Jersey;
Atlantic County, Burlington County, Camden County, Cape May County, Cumberland County, Gloucester County, Hunterdon County, Mercer County, Middlesex County, Monmouth County, Ocean County, Salem County, Somerset County and Warren County.

In Delaware;
New Castle County, Kent County and Sussex County

DVOC Flickr Page

Want to see and share photos of Delaware Valley birds? Check out our Flickr page.

Notable Nearby E-Bird Sightings

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DVOC Initiatives

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BirdPhilly is an initiative of the Delaware Valley Ornithological Club. Founded in 1890, the DVOC has been based at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia since 1891. The DVOC runs fields trips throughout the tri-state region, however BirdPhilly focuses on trips within in Philadelphia city limits in collaboration with Philadelphia Parks & Recreation and the Fairmount Park Conservancy.

Through BirdPhilly our goal is to increase interest and awareness of Philadelphia’s birds by providing quality birding experiences on expertly guided field trips. All field trips are free unless the site charges an admission fee. These trips are open to children, adults, and well behaved pets. BirdPhilly also participates in DVOC’s Philadelphia Bird Race to raise funds for conservation and research projects.

Visit the BirdPhilly webiste

New Bins for New Birders (NB4NB)

Partnering with DVOC’s World Series of Birding Team’s corporate sponsor, Nikon Sport Optics, NB4NB is committed to supplying new, serviceable binoculars to organizations that expose young people to birding and the outdoors. We focus on those organizations that are local to the Delaware Valley Region: southeastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey, and Delaware.




Each year the DVOC raises money for our Conservation Fund. Most of the funds are raised as part of the DVOC’s participation in NJ Audubon’s World Series of Birding but other donations are certainly accepted. All funds collected in a calendar year are distributed to one or more organizations recommended by the Conservation Committee and approved by Council. For further information on donating – conservation@dvoc.org

You can quickly and easily make a donation using PayPal. Click the “Donate” button above to do this. If you have a Paypal Account please log in. If you do not, use the “Don’t have a PayPal account?” section in the lower left hand corner of the page that appears after you click the “Donate” button below.

The DVOC is a 501(c)(3) organization.
Contributions to DVOC are tax-deductible.