Minutes – January 21, 2021

Delaware Valley Ornithological Club

Academy of Natural Sciences is closed due to COVID-19. Zoom Meeting: Instructions for meeting registration and how to use Zoom were announced on website and weekly digest.

7:00 PM The Pre-Meeting birding discussion revolved

Call to Order: President: Linda Widdop

Call to Order: 7:30pm
Linda welcomed all to the meeting. She reviewed that the normal meeting timing is 7:30 – 8pm club business, 8-9pm program and questions, followed by a virtual “Cherry Street” at 9pm.

Registrants: 127; 100 signed on for the meeting (some had more than one person per device).

Linda introduced officers: Vice President: Gregg Gorton; Secretary: Barb Bassett; Treasurer: Marty Dellwo. She welcomed the new Councilors: Linda Timlin and Mike Walter. Also, thanks to the retiring Councilors Lauren Diamond and Rob Bierregaard and continuing Councilors Anne Bekker, Brian Quindlen, Katrina Rakowski and Dan Efroymson for their service to the club.

Minutes from the last regular meetings on Jan 7, 2021 were approved.

Committee Reports:

Membership Committee: Barb Bassett for Bonnie Witmer

2021 New member applications: Jean Brady, Janis Risch, Gregory Mandel

Conservation: Anne Bekker

Anne talked about the Fox Chase Trail and the 100 nest boxes that the students in the Philadelphia School District will be making. Linda welcomes ideas to spend

Billings: Art McMorris

Art asked everyone to email him the number of species you have seen in the DVOC area during 2020. Currently, the number to beat is 258. If a leader, Art will ask for your full list and rare bird sightings. These are due January 30, 2021. The rules of the Billings Contest can be found here: https://dvoc.org/about/committees/billings/

Go birding!!

Field Trips: Linda Widdop

The DVOC will continue holding off any further field trips due to COVID-19 restrictions. For future field trips, Linda reminded everyone that you do not need to be an expert birder to lead a field trip. One just needs to be familiar with a spot. Then pick a location, date and time.

Programs: Gregg Gorton

The speaker for the next meeting will be Hidden in Plain Sight: the Surprising Diversity of Sharp-shinned Hawks by Therese A. Catanach.

More information at https://dvoc.org/wp/activities/meetings/

Annual Treasurer’s Report

Chris Walters presented the Annual Trustee’s Report. The Trust is doing well. Linda welcomes ideas to spend Club money such as Youth Birding, Bins for New Birders, and Conservation projects.


The Philadelphia Mid-Winter Bird Census is coming up. Contact Keith Russel if interested. https://dvoc.org/birding/philadelphia-mid-winter-bird-census/

The Lehigh Valley Audubon Society is hosting a GoFundMe to save a colony of Chimney Swifts in Bethlehem. Please spread the word. The link for the fundraiser is: https://charity.gofundme.com/o/en/campaign/save-our-swifts

George Armistead: LINKS for Telegram chats/alerts:

BirdPhilly Chatter – Open forum for chatting about birds/birding in Philly. https://t.me/joinchat/HUmUFjm0wKB73W0_

Delaware Valley Birding Chat – Rare birds reports and discussion about birds, mostly outside Philadelphiahttps://t.me/joinchat/F_HI3yb7ZlwhvKh2

Alert BirdPhilly – Rare bird alert for rarities in Philly. Not a discussion/chat group, but members are encouraged to share rare birds sightings.https://t.me/joinchat/G-6QDYLb89qQaUdM

Philly Rare Birds Channel – Not a chat & simply rare bird information shared by admins for public. Useful for locals but also out of region folks visiting and interested in rare birds here.https://t.me/phillyrba

Joe Gyekis: If anybody loves One Bird Theory and uses Facebook, please consider joining the group called “Birds as Individuals” https://www.facebook.com/groups/2839609379453257

Tomorrow is the Tri-county Birding Challenge wrap up on Zoom. Rob Fergus posted details on the Philly Bird Chat and DVOC Facebook page.

Local Notes [via the chat]

Vinobha Pannerselvam: Townsend’s Warbler at Brig on 29th. 300th!  Pink Footed Goose in Green Lane Park.  Rough-legged Hawk – Burlington, NJ. on Jan 17th and 5 Northern Harriers (one Gray Ghost) and 2 Short eared owls.

Luc Jacobs: Gray Catbird at Okehocking Preserve on 1/12/2021 (Chester, PA).  In Delaware on 1/10, a Snowy Owl, 30 Snow Buntings, and a Townsend’s Solitaire in Cape Henlopen.

There is a Bald Eagle at Heinz that is visiting the nest on the Oak Island.  My photos show that it is banded with a silver and a green band, one on each leg.  Doris McGovern found out that the bird was banded several years ago in New Jersey.  The sighting was submitted to reportband.gov.

Victoria Sindlinger: Rittenhouse Lincoln’s Sparrow continues in Northwest Corner. Jan. 11th.  Last Sunday – Red-breasted Nuthatch at Morris Arboretum (Philly) on a Young Birder’s trip

Steve Mattan: Northern Shrike and Golden Eagle at Franklin Parker Preserve 1/17, Pileated Woodpecker, 1/21, my place, Southampton, Burlington County, NJ.

Barb Bassett: Pileated Woodpecker, Ceres Park, Mantua, Gloucester County, NJ.  1/16, Avalon Seawatch, Cape May County, NJ: 2 Snowy Owls.  1/15/21, Seaside and Saltmarsh Sparrows, Nummy’s Island, Cape May County, NJ.

Scott Burnet: Painted Bunting remaining in Mohnton, PA (Lancaster County east). Male in great breeding plumage. Easy access. Must make reservations. If you are interested in going for it, contact me via email: selasphorus.scott@yahoo.com.

Linda Rowan: Northern Harrier, Gray Ghost, near Pennsbury Manor seen while doing the Winter Raptor Survey for Lower Bucks County.

George Armistead: Western Tanager was just identified on Facebook from Cape Henlopen, DE.

Rob Bierregaard: 10,000 Snow Geese flew over the Featherbed Lane area, Salem county, NJ. This is a fairly accurate count. Our original guess was 4000 but after analyzing photos, I am confident with the 10K estimate.

Martin Dellwo: Lincoln Sparrow continues in Rittenhouse Square, along with a continuing juvenile Red-tailed Hawk.  A Cooper’s Hawk has appeared a few times recently, and a Peregrine blew through one day last weekend.

Nilesh Shah: Three Bald Eagles at Lake Galena, Bucks County.

George Armistead: Big Dovekie show along the NJ Coast!

Alan Crawford: Dovekie this week in Cape May county, NJ!

Debbie Beer: January 16, 5 Dovekies at Manasquan Inlet. January 10, Townsend’s Solitaire and Snowy Owl at Cape Henlopen, Delaware.

Nathaniel Sharp: Slightly relevant, in VT there have been several flocks of hundreds of Common Redpolls that are rapidly devouring their snow-covered food source, I’ve got a feeling they’ll be continuing to push south!

Anne Bekker: Pole farm, Mercer County, NJ has had the best Short-eared Owl show I’ve ever seen there.  It is much closer than I have had at Featherbed Lane, Salem County, NJ. There was also a Northern Saw-whet Owl.

Evening Program:

Photographing Birds in Flight – Tips, Tales & the One Bird Theory

Speaker: Tom Johnson

Tom gave a very enlightening talk with many tips on photographing birds in flight. His photographs were great examples. The One Bird Theory is how to compare photos of rare birds found in different areas to try to determine if they are the same.


Linda Widdop adjourned the meeting at 9:25 pm.
A lively birding discussion continued until 10pm in the tradition of Cherry Street Tavern.