Outstanding Birds eXpected!
CBC Winter Meeting—Outer Banks, NC—January 30–31, 2015
Our winter meeting, January 30–31, will make a return to Nags Head on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Our last two meetings to the Outer Banks netted 177 and 186 species respectively, and we would like to surpass both of those numbers come January! Species totals last time included twenty-three ducks, eighteen shorebirds, fifteen sparrows, seven warblers and six rails. There's always a chance for rare birds like Glaucous and Iceland Gulls, Rough-legged Hawk, Golden Eagle, Common Redpoll and Ash-throated Flycatcher. A Band-tailed Pigeon was seen by many in Manteo last winter. What might show up next? The only way to find out is to join us!
Our headquarters will be the recently refurbished Comfort Inn South at 8031 Old Oregon Inlet Road in Nags Head. All rooms have microwave, refrigerator, and WiFi. Also included is a hot breakfast served in a private room, starting at 5:30. The cost is $66 for oceanfront rooms and $56 for street side, plus tax. This price is also good for days before and after the meeting. For reservations, call 252-441-6315. Be sure to mention the Carolina Bird Club to get this rate.
Our field trips will cover all the known hot spots, which are numerous in the area. These include two National Wildlife Refuges, Alligator River and Mattamuskeet. We'll go to Bodie Island, Oregon Inlet and Hatteras Point. Pea Island will be covered, including South Pond, which is off-limits except for this trip. Two more inland spots will be Roanoke Island and Palmetto Peartree Preserve. Brian Patteson will offer a pelagic trip. Some of the birds on his last CBC trip were Red Phalarope, Sooty and Manx Shearwaters, Atlantic Puffin, Great Skua, Razorbill, Dovekie, Little Gull, Black-legged Kittiwake and Common Murre. We'll have one or two Beginners' Bird Walks that will include instructions on birding techniques and optics.
The Friday night program will feature Susan Campbell, Research Affiliate with the NC Museum of Natural Sciences. She will use images and study skins in her discussion of hummingbirds found in the Carolinas. Susan has been banding hummers for over 15 years in conjunction with her long-term research.
Saturday evening starts with a dinner buffet and cash bar. The buffet is $25 and will offer a vegetarian option. Our speaker for the evening, Elaine Lubosch, acts as the Education Committee Chair for the Network for Endangered Sea Turtles (N.E.S.T.), established in 1995. This non-profit organization dedicates its efforts to the preservation and protection of habitat and migration routes of sea turtles and other marine animals on the north Banks from the Virginia border to Oregon Inlet. Elaine will discuss her organization's work and what the public can do to help save sea turtles. For more information on N.E.S.T., see http://www.nestonline.org/AboutNEST.htm.
For non-birding partners, there are many interesting places to visit. Aside from the beautiful beach as far as you can see, the Wright Brothers National Memorial in nearby Kill Devil Hills and historic Manteo, with the Elizabethan Gardens, are just a short drive away. Three lighthouses, Currituck Beach, Bodie Island and Cape Hatteras, are each less than an hour away. Manteo also features a reproduction of the lesser-known Roanoke Marshes Lighthouse.
Winter on the Outer Banks is always special. Bring warm clothes, a sense of adventure and your life list. We hope to see you there.
Please note: South Pond on Pea Island, other than viewed from the NC12 shoulder, is off-limits to casual birding. We will have access to restricted areas for this meeting, but only for participants on specified trips. Please do not enter posted areas at South Pond or any other site unless you possess specific, implicit permission. Trespassers may be charged and fined.