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Montgomery Bird Club
Maryland Ornithological Society

 
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This is a list of upcoming birding field trips and Club meetings. New Club members, new birders, and guests are cordially welcome on every field trip. If you have any questions about a specific field trip, please contact the trip leader or contact MBC Trip Coordinator Linda Friedland at 301.983.2136 (before 9 pm). For directions to the Potomac Presbyterian Church for Club meetings, click here.

Trip - Monday, January 01 Earliest Bird Walk - Georgetown Reservoir and D.C./VA Hotspots Half day. Start the New Year right. Meet at 8 a.m. at Georgetown Reservoir, DC, by the gate leading to the dike between the pools. Itinerary will be different this year due to new parking restrictions along the route. Reservations required. Strict limit: 20 participants who absolutely must be prepared to carpool. (No singletons!) LEADER: Mike Bowen, 301-530-5764 or dhmbowen@yahoo.com.

Meeting - Wednesday, January 17 Jim Brighton on Maryland's Biodiversity Project As many of you know, Jim and Bill Hubick have been working, with lots of help from others, to catalog all living things in Maryland. This will be an update as to his progress.

Trip - Sunday, January 21 Black Hill Regional Park All birders, but especially new birders, are welcome on this half-day trip, which will focus on the identification of ducks at this premiere county spot for winter waterfowl. Meet at 8 a.m. at the Visitors Center to Black Hill Regional Park, and bring a spotting scope if you have one. For reservations (which are required) and more information, contact the LEADER: Gerry Hawkins at maineusa@comcast.net or 571-277-8406 (cell).

Trip - Sunday, January 28 Winter Waterfowl Search Half day. Waterfowl search of Montgomery County waterways for ducks, grebes, and mergansers. Based on the unpredictability of winter weather conditions, the leader will decide on the meeting place a few weeks before the trip and use recent bird reports to decide best locations to visit. Bring a scope if you have one. Reservations required. For reservations and more info, contact the LEADER: Andy Martin, martinap2@verizon.net or 301-529-2066.

Trip - Sunday, February 04 Oaks Landfill, Laytonsville Bundle up for a LATE AFTERNOON search for wintering sparrows and raptors, including possible N. Harriers and Short-eared Owls, at this now-closed landfill adjacent to the Blue Mash Nature Trail. Mostly open terrain with some ponds, which we will check if not frozen over. Leader will have scope for distant birds. We have special permission to enter this “closed to the public” landfill so reservations are essential. Limit: 20. Meet at 3:30 pm. on landfill entrance drive at 6001 Rt. 108, Laytonsville, Md. Contact the leader for reservations and more information. LEADER: Mark England, 240-375-4500 (cell) or markengland@canamcontractors.com.

Trip - Wednesday, February 07 Blue Mash A mid-week morning walk geared to new birders. We’ll look for the expected winter birds: cardinals, towhees and sparrows as well as raptors (Northern Harrier a possibility) and ducks. Expect to walk (waterproof boots suggested!) about a mile on level trails. The trip will be cancelled or postponed in case of sleet, ice or rain. Start at 9 am. Reservations not necessary. For directions or more information, call or e-mail the LEADER: Stephanie Lovell, ctlovell1@yahoo.com or 240-242-3235.

Meeting - Wednesday, February 21 George Jett on Ethiopia George Jett will be giving one of his inimitable programs on Ethiopia. George worked for the EPA for 30 years as a Chemical Engineer in the Office of Water. I wrote wastewater regulations from industrial manufacturers. I retired 13 years ago, and have been travelling the world taking pictures for conservation. The trip to Ethiopia was during May of 2011. The trip was from May 5th to the 28th. The focus was on endemic birds and the Ethiopian Wolf, but I studied and photographed anything that would cooperate

Meeting - Friday, March 02 Our Annual Social The selection of Member of the Year is announced; our favorite entertainment, members photographs and a delicious dinner for our annual get-together.

Trip - Wednesday, March 07 Informal Late Afternoon Bird Walks Joint trips with ANS. Meet promptly at 4:30 pm at the end of Seneca Rd at Riley's Lock “on the bridge.” We’ll be checking out the Potomac River for waterfowl, gulls, terns, etc. Next stop will be Hughes Hollow, part of McKee Beshers WMA. Potential highlights here include early Tree Swallows, calling Pied-billed Grebes and Wood Ducks and other waterfowl flying into roost. We’ll then finish with American Woodcock display if they are in the vicinity. Bring scope, flashlight and wear “muddy conditions” footwear. Reservations are not required - all are welcome. For more info, call the LEADER: Jim Green, 301-742-0036.

Trip - Saturday, March 10 Patuxent River Park, Jug Bay Natural Area , Prince Georges County Half day. Joint trip with Audubon Naturalist Society. Waterfowl, Wilson’s Snipe, winter and early spring songbirds, Ospreys displaying. Meet 8 am at parking by park hdqtrs. Wear muddy conditions footgear. Reservation required (15-person limit). LEADER: John Bjerke, johnbjerke1@mac.com.

Trip - Tuesday, March 13 Informal Late Afternoon Bird Walks Joint trips with ANS. Meet promptly at 4:30 pm at the end of Seneca Rd at Riley's Lock “on the bridge.” We’ll be checking out the Potomac River for waterfowl, gulls, terns, etc. Next stop will be Hughes Hollow, part of McKee Beshers WMA. Potential highlights here include early Tree Swallows, calling Pied-billed Grebes and Wood Ducks and other waterfowl flying into roost. We’ll then finish with American Woodcock display if they are in the vicinity. Bring scope, flashlight and wear “muddy conditions” footwear. Reservations are not required - all are welcome. For more info, call the LEADER: Jim Green, 301-742-0036.

Trip - Thursday, March 15 Informal Late Afternoon Bird Walks Joint trips with ANS. Meet promptly at 4:30 pm at the end of Seneca Rd at Riley's Lock “on the bridge.” We’ll be checking out the Potomac River for waterfowl, gulls, terns, etc. Next stop will be Hughes Hollow, part of McKee Beshers WMA. Potential highlights here include early Tree Swallows, calling Pied-billed Grebes and Wood Ducks and other waterfowl flying into roost. We’ll then finish with American Woodcock display if they are in the vicinity. Bring scope, flashlight and wear “muddy conditions” footwear. Reservations are not required - all are welcome. For more info, call the LEADER: Jim Green, 301-742-0036.

Trip - Sunday, April 08 Hughes Hollow and Vicinity Half day. We will explore the wetlands of Hughes Hollow and Sycamore Landing. Species to be expected include Red-headed Woodpeckers, Wood Ducks, Blue-winged Teal, and many other marsh dwellers. A chance for several warblers including Prothonotary. Meet at Hughes Hollow parking lot in the McKee-Beshers WMA at 7 a.m. Reservations are not required, but please contact the leader if you are planning to come so he can provide additional information before the trip. LEADER: Jim Nelson, kingfishers2@verizon.net or 240-515-4517 (cell).

Trip - Sunday, April 15 Occoquan Bay NWR Half day. Explore the diverse habitats in this one-square-mile refuge at the confluence of the Potomac and Occoquan Rivers in Woodbridge, Virginia. A variety of raptors and migratory warblers, vireos, thrushes and flycatchers should be present, and rails and bitterns are possibilities. Meet at the parking lot in the center of the refuge at 7:30 a.m. Reservations required. Limit: 25. LEADERS: Mike Bowen, 301-530-5764 or dhmbowen@yahoo.com, and Gerry Hawkins, 571-277-8406 or maineusa@comcast.net. Directions: From Maryland, take Rt. 495 south to I-95 south, LEFT Exit 161 (Woodbridge), follow Rt. 1 south, cross the Occoquan River, turn left at the light onto Dawson Beach Rd. and follow this road to the end.

Meeting - Wednesday, April 18 Mike Hudson and the Red Knot Just in time for the Northward migration, Mike Hudson will be bringing us to speed about the Red Knot story. Mike Hudson is currently a senior at Washington College, were he is studying Biology and English. In April 2017, he was appointed an editor of North American Birds, the American Birding Association's journal on bird status and distribution. When not in class or working on NAB content, he works as an intern bird bander at the Chester River Field Research Station, where he has been for seven consecutive seasons.

Trip - Saturday, April 21 Blue Mash Nature Trail/Oaks Landfill Half day. Interesting walk at these adjacent and surprisingly birdy sites in Montgomery County. Waterproof boots helpful at Blue Mash, but not needed at the landfill. Meet at 7:30 a.m. at Zion Road parking lot. Call leader for reservations and directions. Trip is limited to 8-10 participants. LEADER: Mark England, 240-375-4500 (cell) or markengland@canamcontractors.com.

Trip - Sunday, April 22 Hugh Mahanes Presidents' Walk at Hughes: Hughes Hollow Half day. Participation of all former Chapter Presidents is encouraged, and everyone is welcome. This is a wonderful chance for newer birders to be in the field with “old hands” who enjoy sharing what they know. With a variety of habitats, Hughes Hollow is always interesting in spring. We will look for water birds on the move and early songbird migrants. Possible birds include Purple Finches, Blue-winged Teal, swallows, and maybe even an American Bittern. Meet at 7 a.m. at the Hughes Hollow parking lot. Reservations required. For more information, directions, and reservations contact the LEADER: Clive Harris, clivegharris@yahoo.com.

Trip - Friday, May 04 Birding by Ear at Hughes Hollow Tune up your ears as we listen for and learn to identify the songs and calls of migrant and local breeding birds. The trip will be geared to new birders but all are welcome. Meet at 7 am at the parking lot at Hughes Hollow. Limit 10. Reservations required. For more information email the leader Paul Woodward at grackling@ATT.NET

Trip - Sunday, May 06 Izaak Walton League, Bethesda-Chevy Chase Chapter, Conservation Farm Half day. Once again, the B-CC Chapter is generously providing us access to this large private property south of Poolesville. Woods, hedgerows, streams, fields, and ponds provide a wide range of bird habitats, and migration should be well underway. Trip will start at 7 a.m. at the League’s Chapterhouse. Reservations required, limit 12. Driving directions will be provided to those who make reservations. For reservations and more information, contact the LEADER Jim Nelson at kingfishers2@verizon.net or 240-515-4517.

Trip - Sunday, May 13 Rock Creek Park, DC Near peak time for migrant warblers, vireos, etc. Meet at 6:30 a.m. at Picnic Area #18, one-half mile below the Nature Center on Ridge Road. Reservations required. Call the leader for more information or specific directions. LEADER: Wallace Kornack (202) 338-7859

Meeting - Wednesday, May 16 Gail Mackiernan on Madagascar Gail Mackiernan will, finally, give her highly anticipated program on Madagascar. Madagascar is the world’s fourth-largest island and is often referred to as the “Eighth Continent”. Its unique fauna and flora have evolved during millions of years of isolation and are a “naturalist’s dream.” Over 140 endemic species of birds (and five endemic bird families!) are found here, as well as a fascinating supporting cast of lemurs, chameleons, frogs, weird insects and even stranger plants. Gail Mackiernan will talk about her November 2015 trip, which explored this ancient land from south to north and recorded many of the island’s most sought-after species.

Meeting - Saturday, June 02 Annual Picnic (Date TBD) This is a placeholder for the annual picnic

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