State College Bird Club

28 September 2011

The State College Bird Club met at Foxdale Village on 28 September 2011.  Forty-five members and guests attended; Nick Kerlin presided.



Upcoming events

Alex Lamoreaux inaugurated our 2011-12 season with a presentation on the “Birds of South Africa.”  He was there as part of a study-abroad program and was able to visit several different parts of the country and observe the diversity of avian life, some of which are mentioned below.

Cory Shearwater and Cape Gannet are common on the coast.  Several species of cormorants are present, including the Bank Cormorant, which is very rare.  Only about 2000 pairs are left.  Alex also saw the African Black Duck, which nests in inland creeks like our Harlequin Duck. 

Most raptors are seasonal migrants.  Two notable species that he saw included the European Hobby, which is fairly rare in South Africa, and the Western Red-footed Falcon.  The latter bird was the first record for western South Africa. 

He also observed some endemic species, including the Red-knobbed Coot and the African Black Oystercatcher, which is endangered.  An endemic species in the Cape Peninsula is the Cape Sugarbird, which is a nectar-feeder.  South Africa has several species of kingfishers, about half of which are insect eaters.  Alex was lucky enough to see a rare Mangrove Kingfisher, which live only in the mangrove forests along the South African coast. 

Minutes taken by Nan Butkovich, Secretary