Minutes – October 6, 2022

This was a hybrid meeting where the speaker was remote. For the remote audience, 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.

Attendees: 9 in-person (4 officers), 23 virtual (excluding in-person attendees who were running Zoom)

The minutes from September 15, 2022 were approved.

Committee Reports

Council –  Gregg Gorton

There was a Council meeting last week on the 28th of September. Gregg mentioned that the Council talked about the banquet as well as the annual awards that are traditionally presented at the banquet. Gregg then invited nominations for the three awards – Witmer Stone, Julian Potter, and Rosalie Edge and asked that any nominations be emailed to the committee chairs for each award (instructions on the website and digest). 

Membership Committee- Gregg Gorton

One new applicant, Deb Payson, applied for membership since the last meeting. 

Field Trips – Gregg Gorton

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

The annual Big Sit will take place at John Heinz on Sunday, October 13th. The Big Sit location is at the newly named James Caroll Observation Deck and it starts at 6 am and ends at 6 pm. Participants are welcome to join at any time during those hours. 

Upcoming field trips:

  • October 7 @ 08:00 am – 12:00 pm –  Bartram’s Garden with Ben Filreis
  • October 8 @ 07:30 am – 10:30 am –  Houston Meadow with Peter Hamner
  • October 8 @ 08:30 am – 10:00 am –  Fernhill Park with Holger Pflicke
  • October 8 @ 08:00 pm – 09:30 pm –  Moonwatching and Nocturnal Migration at Houston Meadow with Victoria Sindlinger
  • October 9 @ 08:00 am – 10:00 am –  FDR Park with Robert Karchnyak
  • October 9 @ 08:00 am – 09:30 am –  Riverbend Environmental Center with Phil Witmer
  • October 9 @ 09:00 am – 11:00 am –  Pennypack on the Delaware with Holger Pflicke

Conservation – Gregg Gorton

Send nominations for the Rosalie Edge award to Anne Bekker. See the website for more details. 

Billings – Art McMorris

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 the Sheet Metal Workers International Association Hall. Tickets will be available on the website in the next day or so. 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.

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

No report

DEI – Navin Sasikumar

No report

Nominating Committee – Gregg Gorton And Art McMorris

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. 


Elizabeth Porter announced that there is a Big Sit at Rose Tree Park on Saturday, October 8. 

Local Notes

Robert Horton saw a Rufous Hummingbird at Frank Gill’s house in Stockton, NJ. 

Gregg Gorton mentioned that Chris Hinkle found a Hudsonian Godwit at Heinz over the last weekend.

Manny Dominguez also reported seeing the Hudsonian Godwit at Heinz.

Barb Bassett reported that Tom Johnson and George Armistead found the first NJ state record of the rare Kirtland’s Warbler (Setophaga kirtlandii) in Del Haven, Cape May county on September 29th, and Jim Dowdell re-found it later.  She also reported that Jesse Amesbury found a second Kirtland’s Warbler at the Garrett Family Preserve, South of the Canal. Barb said that she never thought her lifer Kirtland’s Warbler would be in Cape May and that it was wonderful to see not only these 2 amazing Jack Pine birds but all the friends that came out to see them. Both Linda Widdop and Marty Dellwo saw the Del Haven bird later the same day.

Martin Dellwo said that he had at least 28 species in Rittenhouse Square on 10/06 including 9 species of warbler. In addition, he felt that there was a Black-and-white Warbler around that he missed, and thought he might have briefly heard a Red-breasted Nuthatch but couldn’t track it down.

Programs: Barb Bassett

Barb announced that the next meeting will be on October 20th and it will be an online Zoom meeting only since the speaker and most of the officers are going to be remote. At this meeting, Joan Collins will present a talk titled ‘Current and Projected Effects of Climate Change On Boreal Habitats and Birds of the Adirondacks’. Using current research and personal observations, Joan Collins will offer insights on wildlife changes occurring in boreal habitats of New York’s Adirondack Park primarily as a result of climate change.

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

Evening Program

John Rumm gave a wonderful presentation about the history of bird watching. He started with differences between birding and bird watching as it is currently interpreted and then went back in time to cover ‘shotgun’ ornithology that focused on collecting dead birds that gave way to the far less destructive observation of living birds. He covered the differences between the late 19th century approaches to knowing birds – bird watching (European) and bird study (North American) and gave us an example of the two distinct approaches taken by two friends – Joseph Hickey and Roger Tory Peterson. 

Watch this program on Youtube.


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