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(this month and next)
Oct 14, Nov 11
Generally, the second Monday of each month. For more information, see the Meetings page.
RECENT BIRD ALERT:
On August 3 and 4, a Swallow-tailed Kite was seen in Rockbridge County south of Buena Vista, at the intersection of River Road (Rt. 663) and Brady Mountain Road (Rt. 841).
Due to a wave of spam attacks, this Web site feature has been disabled for the time being. Stay tuned for further announcements.
Augusta Bird Club members may submit rare bird sightings by using the Update page. For further information, or to report any unusual sightings, please contact the rare bird alert coordinator, Allen Larner.
Blue Ridge Young Birders
Please support and/or spread the word!
There wil be a SPECIAL "Birds & Brews, Wings & Wine" social hour in honor of ABC founding member Grant Simmons, who will soon be moving away from our area. It will be held on Tuesday, June 25 at 5:30 pm, at the Mill Street Grill in Staunton.
Please RSVP to Crista Cabe at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Pick up is Saturday, October 19, from 8:30 am until noon at the Augusta County Government Center in Verona (from Route 11, turn east on Dick Huff Lane). Look for our signs and proceed to the truck bay behind the Government Center. We'll load your order into your vehicle for you in a jiffy! Home delivery is also available within about 25 miles.
The Augusta Bird Club's annual Seed Sale raises funds to support environmental education and conservation. The proceeds from your purchase will send young people to Nature Camp, support the Wildlife Center of Virginia, and benefit other important projects. The Augusta Bird Club is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization. ABCSeedSale_AT_gmail.com
Unlike last year, the weather was just fine for this year's Hawk Watch Open House, which was held at the Afton Inn on Saturday, September 21. Many nature-oriented organizations participated, including the Virginia Wildlife Center in Waynesboro. Vic Laubach coordinated the event, while Ann Cline and Penny Warren set up a table display for the Augusta Bird Club, explaining the club's activities to the many visitors who stopped by.
That same Saturday, four members of the Augusta Bird Club (Andrew Clem, Roz Holtzman, Tom Roberts, and Peter Cooper) went on a field trip along the Blue Ridge Parkway and the adjoining Route 610. The number of warblers wasn't quite as great as expected, but there were some nice surprises, most notably groups of Swainson's Thrushes in two separate locations, and a large flock of Common Nighthawks (25-30 total) swooping directly overhead. That was truly amazing! Afterwards, the group joined the Hawk Watch Open House at the Afton Inn.
On Saturday, September 7, four Augusta Bird Club members (Allen Larner, Peter Van Acker, Ann Cline, and Andrew Clem) hiked all the way up to the summit of Elliott Knob in search of migrating birds. This mountain is located in western Augusta County and is the third-highest peak (measured by "prominence") in the state of Virginia. The grand expedition began at the Falls Hollow trailhead along Route 42, and proceeded up through a variety of woodland habitats, including a lush waterfall with moss-covered rocks and rhododendron bushes. It was there that the first cluster of warblers, vireos, and woodpeckers was seen. After climbing for a while flanked by thick green shrubs, several Blackburnian Warblers, Black-throated Green Warblers, and other birds were seen. Eventually, the trail intersected with the very steep Elliott Knob fire road, which leads up to the summit where there are several communication towers. That was another "hot spot," full of Dark-eyed Juncos, Yellow-rumped Warblers, and other "winter" birds that only breed in the highest elevations in Virginia. The view at the top was exhilarating, a fitting reward for all of the exertion in climbing. The satisfaction of having accomplished most of our birding "goals" made the painfully long descent back down to the bottom tolerable.