Welcome to the DuPage Birding Club 2014!
Thank you to everyone who came out for the January DBC meeting. Snow and unplowed streets did not deter a great turnout by 110+ members and visitors to hear Nancy Carroll speak about preparations for the upcoming spring and the arrival of hummingbirds. Nancy provided informative handouts and offered hummingbird feeders to help us in our planning.
In the meantime, our Field Trips Committee and volunteer trip leaders have arranged some exciting opportunities for us to get outside together and bird! In 2014 DBC members have already observed eagles flying over the Illinois River, a rough-legged hawk hovering above a grain elevator and a snowy owl perched out in a wind-blown farm field. Downy, hairy and red-bellied woodpeckers have been seen foraging in the woods. Dark-eyed juncos, American tree sparrows, American goldfinches, tufted titmice and more have been reported at forest preserve and home feeding stations. The songs of the Northern cardinal, blackcapped chickadee and white-breasted nuthatch have already been heard ringing out and mallards observed performing their annual courtship displays in local waterways.
DBC members are always in search of new birding locales. Some of our adventurers will be looking forward to sharing their stories and photos of these experiences with the club at the eagerly awaited annual Member’s Night in March. Exotic locales are not the only places to provide highlights of our avian friends. Birds right here at home provide wonderful sources for Member’s Night presentations as well. Information regarding Member’s Night submissions can be found on page 3 of the Drummings newsletter.
As we gear up for new activities in 2014 let’s not forget the DuPage Birding Club is a club made up of all of our members. Your new Board and committees are working hard to put together a great year. You can help out, too. The Board still needs a Recording Secretary. If you are interested, please contact me at email@example.com. The entire club will benefit from your generous contribution. I have no doubt that you will, too.
The March 2014 Members night was a huge success and we offer our thanks to the ten DBC members who volunteered to show their photographs to the rest of the club. We were fortunate to see birds, mammals, and insects from all over the world and enjoy a descriptive and often amusing commentary as the programs unfolded. Thank-you to all the presenters for a job well done.
Presenters from the left Andrew Steinmann, Tom Lebryk, Jean Spitzer, Dharma Alagaratnam, Bonnie Graham, John Baker, Beth Pector, Christian Goers, Allan Poole and Davida Kalina.
This and That…
Next Club Meeting
April 10, 2014 7:30 p.m
Topic: Warbler Refresher Class
We may love finding warblers migrating through our area in spring, but may feel challenged to memorize their songs and ID clues, and we only see them for a few weeks each year. On April 10 you will get the chance to dust off your warbler identification skills! We will review visual ID features of 12 common warbler species, watch videos of males singing, discuss species arrival dates for Du Page County, and key in on habitats/specific preserves where we may expect to find both common and rarer warbler species.
We’ll also discuss “the best” print, audio-visual, and on-line learning resources to focus your self-study time. Please bring a folder since you will receive handouts describing all of the 30-plus warbler species you may find in DuPage County. If you want a copy of the entire presentation, please bring a flash drive and the program will be uploaded for you. Please come a few minutes early if you want to challenge yourself with a warbler quiz and review resources.
Vicky Sroczynski has been a DuPage Birding Club member since 2002. A grateful recipient of members sharing their considerable birding knowledge and expertise with her over the years, she became involved with the DuPage Forest Preserve bird monitoring program at three different preserves, the Greene Valley Hawk Watch and winter hawk survey program for the past eight years, and various bird blitzes and counts throughout the past decade. An alumna of the Ornithology Certificate program at Morton Arboretum, she now teaches a Beginning Birding class there in late winter. Through her outreach work and leading beginner walks, she became interested in how people learn about birding and hopes to continue facilitating that learning process in a friendly and helpful way.
Select here for more detailed Meeting information.
Welcome to the DuPage Birding Club!
Founded in 1985, the DuPage Birding Club is nationally known as one of the largest and most active birding groups in Illinois. Our mission is to promote birding among our 200+ members and the general public through education and field experiences that takez advantage of the various habitats in DuPage County, the greater Chicago area, and other regional hotspots.
Upcoming Field Trips
Saturday, April 19, 9 a.m.
Whalon Lake for New Birders, Will County
Leader: Jim Hedges
Select icon for more detailed Field Trip Reports.
Superb Owl Sunday VI Trip Report - Febuary 2, 2014
Cold, snowy weather did not deter a group of 18 birders from searching for owls on the sixth annual Superb Owl Sunday. We chose to stay local this year and met at Whalon Lake Forest Preserve at noon. We started with a hike through the pines at WL. We found a couple of Brown Creepers working their way up the tree trunks in search of food. Several Downy Woodpeckers and a few White-breasted Nuthatches were also present. Along the woods edge several White-throated Sparrows foraged in the shrubs. But no owls were found.
We then car-pooled to southwestern Bolingbrook where we immediately located one of the Snowy Owls which have been present for several weeks. Several scopes were set up and everyone got good looks at the bird. We got a bonus when a helicopter flew nearby. The Snowy took flight and travelled several hundred yards before settling back down in the field.
Our final stop was Hidden Lakes Nature Center in Bolingbrook. The feeders had plenty of activity with a number of Tree Sparrows, Juncos, [more….]
Mississippi River Trip Report - Febuary 16, 2014
Urs Geiser led a group of eight birders on his annual Mississippi River Eagle field trip. We squeezed everyone into 2 vehicles and headed west on I-88. Along the way we saw several Red-tailed Hawks and 3 Rough-legged Hawks during the 2+ hour drive. We arrived at Lock & Dam 13 to find very little open water and few birds. Only 20 some Bald Eagles were present. Upon hearing that an American White Pelican was present but not visible as it stuck close to the lock wall, one goofball walked on the water (frozen) to confirm its presence.
We went south from there checking feeders and areas of open water. We did well at the feeders finding the main target species, Eurasian Tree Sparrow, at feeders on River Road in Rock Island County. Other good feeder birds were Red-headed Woodpecker, Tufted Titmouse, and Red-breasted Nuthatch. A group of 12 Wild Turkeys were found crossing the road as we continued to car-bird our way south. We would find a few more Bald Eagles here and there as well as Common Mergansers and Common Goldeneye. [more….]
Saturday, April 12, 8:00 a.m.
Lincoln Marsh, Wheaton
Leader: John Cebula
Friday, April 25, 7:30 a.m.
Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve, Darien #3
Leader: Vicky Sroczynski
Sunday, April 20, 8 a.m.
Bemis Woods FP South Unit, Western Springs
Leader: Lesa Hipes
Sunday, April 13, 7:30 a.m.
Nelson Lake, Dick Young Forest Preserve, Batavia
Leader: John Duerr
Friday, April 18, 7:30 a.m.
Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve, Darien #2
Leader: Vicky Sroczynski
Friday, April 25, 8 a.m.
Hickory Knolls Discovery Ctr & Natural Area, St. Charles
Leader: Denis Kania
Saturday, April 26, 8 a.m.
Saganaskee Slough & Little Red Schoolhouse, Cook County
Leader: Eric Delbecq
Saturday, April 5, 7:30 a.m.
McKee Marsh, Warrenville
Leader: Kyle Wiktor
Saturday, April 5, 9:00 a.m.
Mallard Lake Forest Preserve for New Birders, Hanover Park Leader: Jim Hedges
Sunday, April 6, 6:30 a.m.
Hennepin Area, Illinois River
Leader: Jeff Smith
Tuesday, April 8, 7 p.m., Greene Valley
Evening Trip to View Woodcock Courtship Displays Leader: Jeff Smith
Friday, April 11, 7:30 a.m.
Waterfall Glen Forest Preserve, Darien #1
Leader: Vicky Sroczynski
Saturday, April 12, 7:30 a.m. (New start time)
Cantigny Park, Wheaton
Visit our **UPDATED** LENDING LIBRARY
Birding BOOKS, AUDIO,VIDEO AND MORE!!!
Select our DuPage Birding Club Apparel form to view the great selection of DBC Spiritwear apparel (created by Holy Cow Sports) that is embroidered with the DuPage Birding Club name and logo.
To order, download a copy of the order sheet and fill out your order. Drop off the completed sheet with payment to Vicky Sroczynski at the next DBC meeting. Merchandise can be picked up at the following DBC meeting date.
Click on the icon to read recent DBC Field Trip Reports
Make Your Birding Efforts Count in More Ways
Since the inception of the program in 1997, over 60 Forest Preserve District of DuPage County volunteer birders have conducted nearly 7,500 breeding bird point surveys across 46 forest preserves. This effort helps assess population trends and confirmed breeding activity in wetlands, prairies and woodlands. Data is contributed to regionwide efforts headed up by the Chicago Audubon Society and Bird Conservation Network (BCN), as well as nationwide datasets maintained by Audubon and Cornell Lab of Ornithology (eBird).
How You Can Help
There are a variety of ways you can contribute to the Forest Preserve District’s bird monitoring efforts. Contact Natural Resource Management Volunteer Liaison Cindy Hedges at firstname.lastname@example.org or (630) 876-5929 to discuss how you can be involved! [Read more…]
Mississippi River Waterfowl Report - March 22, 2014
Jeff Chapman led a group of nine on his annual Mississippi River Trip looking for waterfowl and other regional specialties. We started the trip further south this year due to frozen conditions upriver. Lock & Dam 14 was the first stop. Eleven duck species were recorded here including Greater Scaup and a lone Red-breasted Merganser (two species which arenʼt always found). Good numbers of American White Pelicans and Bald Eagles were found here as well. http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S17601336.
We worked north along the river with a brief stop in Cordova where the normally reliable overlook waspretty much devoid of ducks. A few feeder birds were recorded. We checked along River Road north of town for more feeder birds with the main target being Eurasian Tree Sparrow. This was one case where being in the lead car did not work out as the back of the pack found an E Tree and 2 Eurasian Collared Doves. A couple of Red-headed Woodpeckers was the only other highlight. http://ebird.org/ebird/view/checklist?subID=S17601414. A roadside stop just south [more….]
Check out the very interesting NOVA program called “Inside Animal Minds:Bird Genius” currently scheduled on channels 11.1 and 11.2: