Nebraska Ornithologists' Union



Date of this Version



"The Seventy-Ninth Annual Meeting," from Nebraska Bird Review (June 1980) 48(2).


Copyright 1980, Nebraska Ornithologists' Union. Used by permission.


The Seventy-ninth Annual Meeting was held at the 4-H Camp in the Bessey Division of the Nebraska National Forest, near Halsey, 17 and 18 May, 1980. The attendance at this meeting was 73, compared to "seventy-odd" at the 1973 meeting and 87 at the 1970 meeting, both held at the Camp. The formal program, which was held to a minimum to maximize the time available for birding consisted of demonstrations of bird banding by Hazel and Fitzhugh Diggs of Hamburg, Iowa, and Ruth Green of Bellevue, and at the annual banquet a slide-illustrated talk by David Griffiths, of Pueblo, Colorado, on "Birds of Alaska and Colorado". At the business meeting the officers were all re-elected: Ruth C. Green, Bellevue, president; Prof. Stanley Longfellow, Kearney, vice-president; Mrs. Emma Johnson, Omaha, secretary; Mr. Wm. W. Lemburg, Cairo, treasurer; Dr. Neva Pruess, Lincoln, librarian; and Dr. R.G. Cortelyou, Omaha, editor. Grand Island was selected as the site for the 1981 meeting, and it was decided to try to return to the 4-H Camp for the fall meeting, if possible, with the Harlan County Reservoir as an alternative site. Because the supply of Check-lists was exhausted about a year ago, and Dr. Johnsgard has printed privately a limited edition of a new Check-list which he hopes to have issued in a larger edition under organizational sponsorship, Dr. Puress and Dr. Johnsgard were authorized to look into the possibilities of joint sponsorship by NOU of any such printing, and of the availability of the book through NOU.

The Seventy-sixth Annual Field Days were held Saturday, 17 May, and Sunday morning, 18 May, with some early arrivals birding much of Friday. Friday was a day of state-wide rain, much of it light and intermittent. At Halsey Saturday the rain was rather light and infrequent, and by Sunday it was just an infrequent mist. But for the whole period the sky was overcast and the light poor for birding. The rain was badly needed, and the weather probably helped hold the birds and so contributed to the good count: 132 species, plus any number of unidentified Empidonax species. On the other hand, road conditions prevented birding in the southern part of the Forest, and the grouse blinds had been closed and cattle turned into the pastures just before the meeting began. A very black hawk, apparently a Red-tail was seen both days in the air a little southwest of the Camp, and a very busy Chickadee nest was another interesting discovery. The 1973 meeting was held 12 and 13 May on "reportedly the first nice" weekend at Halsey "this year", and produced a count "on or near the Forest" (the same standard used for the 1980 count) of 99, plus unidentified Empidonax species. The 1970 meeting, 16 and 17 May, produced account of "125 on field trips Sunday (some off of the Forest) and 6 others recorded earlier but not on Sunday" (NBR 38:26). (Only 130 species were listed. The original count card is not in the file, so it can not be determined whether the count is wrong, or a species - maybe Empidonax species or Rock Dove - was omitted.) A comparison of the three counts is given on the next page. 1980 = A, 1973 = B (an * in this column marks those birds seen only by a party which went north to Hackberry Lake, on Valentine Refuge (NBR 41:23), probably comparable to the "off the Forest" records for 1970). and 1970 = C.