Submited by Lesslie Crowell & Joanne Bricker for Secretary, Peggy Cornett
-President Doug Rogers welcomed all 36 attendees, including one newcomer, Janet Kingsley. Doug announced that our Hospitality Chair, Priscilla Kingston (and “honorary co-chair”, husband Ron) have resigned. He expressed our thanks for their many years of dedicated service to the Club, and put out a plea for someone to take over the position. (Update: Patty Kalbfleisch has graciously offered to become the new Hospitality chairperson, and the Board has gratefully approved her appoinment to this position and welcomes her to the Board.)
Doug announced a major change would be coming and later revealed that the monthly meeting date would be changing to the 1st Wednesday of the month, to avoid a long-time date conflict with the Charlottesville Camera Club meeting night.
-Unusual bird sightings – David White heard Whip-poor-wills calling along the Skyline Drive recently. While in coastal Virginia, JoAnn Dalley witnessed unusual bird behavior in response to stormy conditions, including a Bald Eagle flying directly through the foul weather and a drawn out territorial battle between kingfishers. A red fox was reported regularly returning to bird feeders to clean up spilled seeds. Lou Tanner noted hearing several Screech Owls locally, and Joanne Bricker interruped a Barred Owl dining along the Skyline Drive roadside at 4pm in the afternoon.
-MBC’s only annual fundraiser, the Bird Seed Sale, is officially underway. Doug encouraged members to support the sale and help spread the word to friends and neighbors. Pertinent information will be on the website very soon. The Bird Seed Team of volunteers is in place–members Janet Paisley and her faithful truck, Rosita, Tom Leback, Scott Connuck, Dave Hogg, Lou Tanner, John Holden, Jon Rockett, Jenny Gaden, Maynard Davis, and Joanne Bricker. Dates to remember are Wed., Oct. 26 – Orders Due and Sat., Nov. 5 – Pick-up Day.
-Membership Report – Myrlene Staten announced that while current membership renewals are ahead of last year’s totals, now is the time for as yet unrenewed members to pay dues for the 2016-2017 fiscal year. It’s easy to renew membership here at our website, by check through mail-in, or by direct payment to the Treasurer or Membership chair at the monthly meeting. Myrlene is working hard to spearhead a new bird photography contest/exhibit. She is exploring co-sponsoring such a project with the Charlottesville Camera Club and asked for volunteers to help her in this new and exciting endeavor, which will take place in the spring of 2017. Y0u can contact Myrlene by email at our MBC address, [email protected]
Doug shared Mary Mapel’s announcement that the 2016-2017 Bird Conservation Poster Contest. once more co-sponsored by MBC and Blue Ridge Young Birders Club, is also underway. The contest is open to kindergarten through eighth grade students in Charlottesville, Albemarle and Nelson counties, and the goal is that participating students will gain a greater understanding of birds, the threats they face, and steps they can take to help the birds and our planet. Details about the contest are available on both clubs’ websites. The deadline for entries is Saturday, Nov. 19th and the Awards Reception will be Sunday, Dec. 4th from 2-4pm in the Ivy Creek Education Building.
Treasurer’s Report – Maynard Davis announced that we are in good shape with a $1900 surplus (which includes the $1000 VSO reimbursement for their Annual Meeting held at Wintergreen). Our two significant sources of funds are the Bird Seed Sale and Membership. He reminded members to pay dues now. Our fundraising helps purchase the significant prizes (binoculars for individual winners and feeding stations for classroom winners) for the Bird Conservation Poster Contest.
Field Trips Report – Doug read Gabriel’s report in which he thanked Dave Hogg for leading the recent Nighthawk walks at Ivy Creek. Field trips for September as follows: Sunday, 9/11, Stony Point Pass, led by Stauffer Miller; Saturday, 9/17, Lickinghole Creek, led by Peter Brask; Saturday, 9/24, home of Myrlene Staten & Richard Tieg, Madison VA, led by Doug Rogers. Details are on this website.
Facebook – Susan Babineau announced that our MBC Facebook page has about 130 followers. All Facebook users receive email invitations to all club field trips and events.
Club News Reporter – Most members in attendance noted that they had visited our new website. Gretchen Gehrett suggested that it would be helpful to many members to receive notification of club activities directly. Club News Reporter, Joanne Bricker, acknowledged the transition from newsletter to website involves change. She will send out a monthly “reminder” email to members (with included website link) to check the website for easily accessible event updates and posts. Joanne’s goal is to make the new website as user-friendly as possible. and she hopes that the transition to this new way of communicating will be smooth for most. Member’s suggestions for improvements are always welcome. (Contact Joanne at [email protected] or [email protected] )
Doug reminded us about Saturday’s (9/10) Rockfish Gap Hawk Watch Open House from 10-3pm. Free food and interesting activities accompany the general excitement of spotting migrating hawks overhead.
Scheduled meeting speaker, Bob Schammerhorn, did not appear. (Lou Tanner informs us that Bob humbly emailed him after the meeting, acknowledging that for the first time of giving presentations for ten years, he just plain forgot! I’m sure most of us can relate! We’re hoping that we can reschedule him for our November meeting. Stay tuned.) Doug Rogers graciously stepped in and gave an informative presentation on Bluebirds and the adventures of trail monitoring. (Thanks, Doug! Way to go.) In response to a question from the audience, Dan Bieker responded that it is illegal to kill any snake in VA.