Minutes – October 20, 2022

This was a fully remote meeting on account of the speaker as well as three of the officers being remote. Instructions for registration were announced on the website and weekly digest.

Call to Order: President Gregg Gorton

Call to Order: 7:33 PM

Gregg introduced all the officers.

Attendees: 27 on Zoom. 1 new member – Rebecca Ives.

The minutes from October 6, 2022 were approved.

Committee Reports

Membership Committee – Gregg Gorton

3 new members: 

Rebecca Ives – student member

Aaron Coolman

Pablo Tebas

Field Trips – Barb Bassett

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

Upcoming field trips:

  • October 22 @ 08:00 am – 10:30 pm –  POD with Patrick McGill
  • October 22 @ 8:30 am – 10:00 am – Upper Dublin Bird Town with Nilesh Shah
  • October 22 @ 9:00 am – 10:30 am – Fairmount Park Horticulture Center with Holger Pflicke
  • October 23 @ 8:00 am – 10:00 am – FDR Park with Robert Karchnyak
  • October 25 @ 7:30 am – 9:00 am – Lorimer Park with Linda Widdop
  • October 25 @ 9:30 am – 11:30 am – West Fairmount Park Chamounix Drive with Ed Edge
  • October 27 @ 9:30 am – 11:00 am – Morris Park with Ed Edge
  • October 28 @ 8:00 am – 12:00 pm – Bartram’s Garden with Ben Filreis
  • October 29 @ 8:00 am – 10:30 am –  POD with Patrick McGill
  • October 29 @ 11:00 am – 4:00 pm – Tannersville Cranberry Bog Field with Cindy Ahern

Conservation – Anne Bekker

On October 26 at 4 pm, the Academy of Natural Science is hosting a webinar to discuss the remodeling plans at FDR Park. Anne would like to see birders well presented at the meeting. The registration link is on the website. 

Bird Safe Philly has a new Facebook page thanks to Stephanie Egger. Please like, follow and share that page. In addition, if you see any dead birds outside of the established monitoring routes, please add them to the BSP iNaturalist project. 

Billings – Gregg Gorton

Go Birding! The Billings award is given each year to the DVOC member who observes the most birds for the year in the Billings area. You have to be a member at the beginning of the year to compete in that particular year. 

Banquet – Lauren Diamond

The in-person banquet is returning this year. The banquet will be on November 17th (third Thursday in November) at 6:30 pm at the Sheet Metal Workers International Association Hall. Tickets are available on the website. We will be checking vaccination cards at the door to ensure a safe banquet for everyone. The speaker is Mark Garland who will present an interactive trivia quiz about the birds of the world. Please sign up soon so that we can get enough food for everyone and bring a friend!

Cassinia – Gregg Gorton

The next edition of Cassinia continues to progress and is expected to be available around the first week of next year. 

Communication – Navin Sasikumar

If anyone is sending info for the website, things won’t go up right away because Navin is going away on vacation and will be out of the country for 3 weeks. 

DEI – Navin Sasikumar

No report

Nominating Committee – Gregg Gorton

Patrick McGill has joined the nominating committee. The committee is reaching out to current officers to see if they are willing to return for the next year. They are also looking to nominate two new people to join the council for a 3-year term. Art said that the committee will be presenting the slate of nominees at the two December meetings and will welcome nominations from the floor. The election of officers and council will take place at the first meeting of the next year. This meeting, which is the Annual Members Meeting, will be on the 2nd Thursday in January (rather than the usual first Thursday) at the Discovery Center. 

Awards Committee – Gregg Gorton

If you want to nominate anyone for the awards presented at the banquet, please send an email to the committee chairs. 


Barb Bassett announced that the annual photography night is happening on December 17th with Steve Mattan as presenter. Two judges already, but if anybody else would like to be a judge, please email Barb. Multiple categories – birds, non-bird fauna, flora, landscape, birders, etc. December 1st is the cutoff to send photos. 

Gregg Gorton announced that the DVOC lost a long-time member – Chuck Hextall – on July 1st, 2020, but we hadn’t heard about it until recently.. Chuck was a member for 61 years and lived to be 89. He joined the club when he was 19. 

Local Notes

Linda Rowan reported seeing two adult Peregrine Falcons at the nest box on the PA/NJ Turnpike Connector bridge on Tuesday, October 18.

Manuel Dominguez said that he might have a new Peregrine Falcon at the Navy Yard. He reported seeing one that was banded, and Art McMorris said it might be a turnover of adults there, since the previous ones were not banded. Manny also said that they had two Eastern Meadowlarks at the Navy Yard on Wednesday morning. 

Patrick McGill reported seeing Sedge Wren, Grasshopper Sparrow, Vesper Sparrow, Eastern Meadowlarks, and American Pipits at POD last weekend. He said that he is leading a BirdPhilly walk there this Saturday if anyone wants to help him find a Nelson’s Sparrow. 

Victoria Sindlinger said that on Saturday, October 15, and Monday, October 24 she saw massive staging flocks of Tree Swallows in Cape May, by the Convention Center and Cape May Meadows, respectively. She had no official estimate but guessed that there were many thousand.

Barb Bassett reported that Higbee Dike counters had over 70k Yellow-rumped Warblers there. 

Martin Dellwo said that POD had one, maybe two, Grasshopper Sparrows. He also said that on two different days there were what appeared to be a Peregrine Falcon, but it looked pretty big and dark and he had photos. He also said that on the same day in the morning, he saw quite a few Blue Jays moving down river which is an example of visual migration. He also flushed Wilson’s Snipe a couple of times as well as a Virginia Rail. He also had Nashville Warbler. 

Programs: Barb Bassett

Barb announced that the next meeting will be on November 3rd. The speaker will be Alison Richard who will be presenting on ‘Elephant Bird Enigmas’. It is currently slated to be at the Academy rather than only on Zoom, so please sign up to be in person – she’s coming from Connecticut and it will be good to have people there in person. 

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

Evening Program

Joan Collins presented a wonderful and informative program on the boreal forests of the Adirondacks and the effects of climate change on these forests. She first gave a description of boreal habitats, and then presented facts on how atmospheric carbon dioxide is driving up global temperatures. She then described how increased temperatures are changing natural processes in the Adirondacks like later frosts and snow, as well as the effects on species like non-hibernating chipmunks and bears, and overwintering Blue Jays and crows. 

Book recommendation: The End of Ice Dahr Jamail 


After the presentation and questions, the meeting was adjourned at 9:06 pm.