The State College Bird Club, Inc.

The State College Bird Club met on Wednesday November 13  at 7:15 p.m. at the State College Borough Building. Seventy-six members and guests attended and this may be a record attendance.  President Greg Grove presided.  The minutes of the October 23  meeting were read by Deb Grove and approved by the group. Dorothy Bordner delivered the Treasurer’s Report which is given below. Dorothy also read the checklist: bird species seen within 25 miles between Oct 24 and Nov 13. Notable sightings were  a brant at Boalsburg and Bald Eagle State Park (BESP), black scoter at Colyer and BESP, sanderling at BESP, Black tern at BESP, northern shrike at Bear Meadows,  clay-colored sparrow in the Bellefonte area and a red-throated loonand black-bellied plover at BESP.

President Greg Grove informed the group of the upcoming Wildlands Movement Conference in February and that they may want to consider attending. This is a grassroots movement which is concerned with setting aside habitat and linking large areas with corridors. 

The December 11 meeting will be at the Senior Citizen Center and will focus on the upcoming Christmas Bird Count.

Chuck Fergus was the speaker and the local writer’s  standing as an accomplished wildlife and nature writer was responsible for the large attendance. Chuck presented slides which illustrated the State Forest Natural Areas which is the subject of his book, Natural Pennsylvania.

In his book,  Chuck covers all 61 State Forest Natural Areas. His slides and talk captivated the audience as he led them through  many of these sites. He showed natural formations such as rocky ridges, talus slopes,  and the serpentine rock of Goat Hill Barrens; waterways such as the Little Juniata, Halfway run, Pine Creek and Miller Run;  and wet areas such as Cranberry Swamp, Bear Meadows Bog, Devils Elbow and vernal pools containing amphibians.       

Flora such as the pitcher plants of Algerine Swamp, orchids in Reynolds Spring Natural Area in Tioga county, and wild flowers of Rocky Ridge were spotlighted along with the spring flowers of the dogwood.  He told of his love of old-growth white pine stands as well as those of old-growth hemlocks. And in contrast,  the disturbing demise of old-growth hemlocks in the Sweet Root Natural Area due to the wooly adelgid .  From the diversity of fungi in Alan Seeger Natural Area to the  various fauna which can be encountered in the areas from bears and elk to warblers and  otters, all can be found in the 61 natural areas of Pennsylvania’s State Forests.

Respectfully submitted.

Deborah S. Grove, December 11, 2002