Minutes – June 1, 2023

This was a hybrid meeting. The in-person portion was in the BEES classroom. Instructions for registration were announced on the website and weekly digest.

Call to Order: President Gregg Gorton

Call to Order: 7:30 PM

Gregg introduced all the officers and welcomed guests.

Attendees: 18 in-person, 20 on Zoom. 

No minutes from the last meeting because it was a special meeting and no club business was conducted. 

Council Report – Gregg Gorton

The fundraising for the Frank Windfelder memorial bench at Pennypack on the Delaware is going well and we’ve exceeded the $2k that we were hoping to raise from members. The cost of the bench is $3k and the club was going to cover the difference, but we’ll leave the donation button open in case other members want to donate. If we exceed $3k, the extra money will go into the conservation fund. 

Stay tuned for details on the summer picnic at the Discovery Center. It will most likely be in August and we will have more info soon including a spreadsheet for potluck dishes and volunteering signups. 

Committee Reports

Membership Committee – Linda Timlin

The following members were added in April: Rebecca Patti, Darcey Gans, Ed Edge, Thomas Schultz, John Marshall, Marie Jackson, and Cindi Willis.

To date, 33 new members have joined the club in 2023.

Field Trips – Linda Widdop

Email Linda Widdop, linda@techimpact.org, if interested in leading any field trips. 

Upcoming field trips:

  • June 11 @ 8:30 am – 10:00 am – Breeding birds at Glen Foerd with Holger Pflicke
  • June 20 @ 7:00 am – 12:00 pm – Lakehurst Naval Station for Upland Sandpipers with Bob Horton. Signup is closed for this year.
  • June 24 @ 8:30 am – 10:00 am – Upper Dublin Bird Town Walks with Wyncote Audubon at Robbins Park led by Nilesh Shah
  • June 25 @ 8:30 am – 10:00 am – Breeding birds at Pleasant Hill Park with Holger Pflicke

Marty Dellwo mentioned that Subaru sponsored an Earth Day event in which they paid for applying window decals for preventing bird collisions at their corporate Headquarters. Wyncote Audubon and DVOC will both receive $1k each for Bird Safe Philly. 

Conservation – Gregg Gorton for Anne Bekker

Oakwell owner John Bennet has left and the property has been turned over to Lower Merion Township. The community is waiting to see what will happen with the property. Hundreds of people including students got involved in trying to save the land and many are hopeful that the school board will see a way to not cut down all the trees. 

Banquet – Lauren Diamond

More info on the banquet will be coming soon. 

Communication – Navin Sasikumar

Victor Lefevre is the new web admin. Please add Victor to any requests sent to Navin. You can also just use webmaster@dvoc.org and both of us should get those emails. 

Navin added that we have a Youtube channel where recorded meetings are posted. 

DEI – Navin Sasikumar

The second annual Black Excellence in Birding event at the Academy celebrating Black Birders Week was on May 27th. Thanks to everyone who came to the event. 

Gregg added that the David Lindo event was fabulous and thanked Barb Bassett for organizing the event alongside ANSP and In Color Birding. 


Barb Bassett announced that the Southeast Region of the PA Game Commission is looking for someone to lead a bird walk at Benjamin Rush State Park. The tentative date is Sunday, July 30th from 10-2 when they are having an extended pop-up archery event. 

Barb also added that Camp Beehive is looking for someone for one hour on August 21st to teach 5-8 year olds at the Bok Building in the East Passyunk neighborhood. If you are interested, email Barb. 

Debbie Beer announced that the Birding Club of Delaware County is having its annual picnic at Pavilion 8 at Ridley Creek State Park on Wednesday, June 14th at 7:30 pm. It’s free and open to the public.

Gregg mentioned that we were going to have a Quizzo night for this meeting. A variety of reasons prevented that from happening, but we will reschedule it for later. 

Judy Stepenaskie said that the 3rd PA Breeding Bird Atlas will go from 2024 to 2028.  It will also include a winter atlas.  It is in the early stages of being organized by the Pennsylvania Society for Ornithology.

Local Notes

Gregg Gorton mentioned that there was an Olive-sided Flycatcher at Houston Meadow.

Marty Dellwo had a Grey-cheeked/Bicknell’s Thrush at Rittenhouse Square. He managed to get a recording and someone else saw the checklist and said that Marty’s bird was a Bicknell’s. He has now had all thrushes singing at Rittenhouse Square except for Hermit Thrush. He also had a Kentucky Warbler at Rittenhouse Square. And Ed Edge found a Worm-eating Warbler while everyone was looking for the Kentucky warbler. He added that a pair of Downy Woodpeckers fledged a single nestling in the square.

Marty added that he had a Black-crowned Night Heron at the Art Museum Waterworks. While he only saw one, he thought that it might be a possible place in Philly with a breeding pair, but he had no evidence of young. He also had a Snowy Egret at Heinz yesterday. He did a loop around Gallinule Island at Heinz and saw a Great Egret with nesting material acting territorially and wondered if they were going to start a rookery.

Bert Filemyr said that there are several breeding plumaged Red-necked Phalaropes at the Raymond Pool in Bombay Hook. Linda Rowan said that there have been Red-necked Phalaropes at South Cape May Meadows recently as well. 

Debbie Beer said that the Ocean City Welcome Center wading bird colony was a wonderful spectacle of herons, egrets, night herons, and ibises. The White Ibis population has increased exponentially over the last few years. 

Tony Croasdale had a Common Merganser pair for about three weeks straight on the Wissahickon. The male was chasing mallards and he thinks the female was in a tree. There are no records of breeding in Philadelphia prior to this. Gregg said there were 5 duckling Common Mergansers at Green Lane bridge. 

Barb Bassett said that Hairy Woodpeckers have already fledged at her house in Clarksboro, NJ.

Linda Rowan said she saw a male Ruby-throated Hummingbird yesterday, which was the first she had seen in weeks. She also said that the resident Red-tailed Hawks in Levittown, Bucks County have 3 young that should fledge in the next few weeks.

Elizabeth Porter said she has been watching a House Wren grabbing suet from her suet feeder in Gladwyne and flying directly to the nest box, presumably feeding young.

Linda Widdop said she had a lingering Blackpoll Warbler at Lorimer Park yesterday. 

Shawn Towey said that they haven’t had any hummingbirds yet but have had Baltimore Oriole, Brown Thrasher, Eastern Bluebird, and Red-tailed Hawk in the Valley Forge area. 

Sandra Keller said that it was a slow spring migration in SW Ohio. She’s hoping for a better fall and has 181 for her Butler County Big Year so far.

Programs: Barb Bassett

Barb said that this was the last meeting before the summer break and the next meeting will be on September 14th. 

More information on the Meetings page of the DVOC website for this and other upcoming meetings.

Evening Program

Tony Croasdale gave a highly informative presentation on the habitats and plants you need to attract birds to your yard. He said the big question was, “What are your priorities for birds? Do you want them breeding in your yard? Do you want migratory birds? Do you want to do skywatching or do you want unusual birds?” The answer to that question along with the surrounding habitat will help you determine what you need to plant to attract the type of birds you desire. See Tony’s slide deck for a list of plants or watch the full presentation on Youtube


After the presentation and questions, the meeting was adjourned at 9:10 pm.