The March meeting of the State College Bird Club was held on March 22, 2006. President Jim Dunn presided over the meeting at the State College Borough Building at 7:15.43 members and guests were present. The minutes of the January meeting were read by Deb Grove and approved by members. Dorothy Bordner delivered the Treasurer's Report.
Greg Grove, Field Trip vice president, announced that the Early Birds of Huntingdon County field trip is scheduled for March 25.
Dan Ombalski brought the club up-to-date on the Tussey Mountain Hawkwatch. Geoff Gould is ½ way through the season with about 120 golden eagles being counted. Matt Holley has about 25 on Bald Eagle Ridge.
Dorothy Bordner read the checklist: 104 bird species were seen between February 22 and March 22. Species of note were tundra swan, rusty blackbirds at Toftrees, cackling goose at the Duck Pond, sandhill cranes seen at Port Matilda.
Stan Kotala spoke for a few minutes on the wind energy issue in Central PA. The turbines are dangerous to migrating birds, will not provide enough energy because of the type of winds that hit the ridges, will cause massive fragmentation, are costly, and there are many other problems. He cited windwatch.com as an site to learn more.
Dan Brauning, an ornithologist for the PGC, presented a program entitled Peregrine Falcons- Saga of Recovery which focused on the peregrine falcon's return to Pennsylvania. Dan presented some natural history of the falcon as well as history of the bird in PA and its historic nesting sites. The use of DDT decimated the falcon in the middle of the century and because of that the peregrine was named an endangered species and protected. Captive stock was used in a breeding program and by 2005 there were 14 nesting sites in the state. These included tall buildings in metropolitan areas as well as bridges. Recently, a cliff-nesting site was confirmed.
Satellite telemetry has allowed the PGC to follow 5 birds to determine their dispersal, migration and survival. Dan has been involved in the restoration program from the early 80s in Philadelphia to the recent thrill of finding the cliff-nesting site in basically his back yard in Lycoming county.
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