Doug Rogers welcomed newcomers and guests. There were thirty-two present. Doug announced that the visitation and memorial service for Priscilla Kingston will be Saturday, 7 January, from 11:00 AM-1:00 PM at Hill & Wood Funeral Home. Following Priscilla’s wishes, a memorial fund has been established in her name. Ron Kingston has requested a memorial bench/plaque be placed at Ivy Creek Natural Area grounds. Doug has sought approval from the ICNA director and has consulted with buildings and grounds manager.
The MBC board plans a meeting in the near future. The board is now accepting nominations for Field Trips Chair and Vice President for the coming fiscal year (beginning July 1st).
Lesslie Crowell sent an announcement that thirty-three bird conservation posters are on display at the Crozet Library now through January 30.
Jenny Gaden reported on the Christmas Bird Count. There were nine rare species sighted: Ross’s Goose and Trumpeter Swam at Lickinghole Creek; Common Yellow-throat on the Rivanna River (seen by Allan Hale and Leigh Surdukowski); Baltimore Oriole (Ron Kingston); Rusty Blackbird, Double-crested Cormorant, Dickcissel (Jim Nix); Ruddy Duck (L. Surdukowski); and a Peregrine Falcon (David White).
Field Trips Report submitted by Gabriel Mapel: There was only one field trip in December due to holidays and the CTC. Dan Bieker led the trip to southern Albemarle County on December 10 with a group of fifteen. Highlights included a Northern Harrier and side-by-side comparisons of Downy and Hairy Woodpeckers. On January 14 Doug Rogers will lead a trip to Highland County to see Rough-legged Hawks, Golden Eagles, American Tree Sparrows and more. The trip leaves promptly at 8 AM from Barracks Road Shopping Center with several meeting places along the way. On Saturday, January 21, Janet Paisley will lead a trip to Bellair Farm in southern Albemarle County. The property is an excellent birding site and they will look for Passerines, waterfowl, raptors and possibly Fox Sparrows, Wilson Snipe, and Merlin. Meet at 8 AM at the PVCC Stultes Center parking lot. On Saturday January 28 Guy and Susan Babineau will lead a trip to Chris Greene Lake, near Guy and Susan’s home.
Doug Rogers has organized a birding boat trip on the Chesapeake Bay on February 4, which is already full. They expect to see Sea Ducks such as Harlequin, Red Head, Scaup, three Scoter species, Northern Gannet, Red-breasted Merganser, Bufflehead, Cormorant (two species), Lesser and Greater Black-backed Gull, Razor Bills, Kittiwake, several gull species, as well as Humpback Whales and Harbor Seals.
Treasurer Report was given by Maynard Davis. The club is on even keel with about $1000 for 2016. We will have upcoming expenses for the photo contest and the Priscilla Kingston memorial fund.
Myrlene Staten gave the membership report. We have 148 members, including only ten new members (vs. seventeen in 2016). She is asking for help manning tables to promote the bird club at upcoming events such as the Center for Historic Plants Open House in April and May.
Hospitality chair Patty Kalbfleisch thanked everyone for contributing to the December Christmas Party.
Continue checking on bird club activity and photos on the MBC Facebook page.