Southeast Volusia Audubon Society, P.O. Box 46, New Smyrna Beach, FL 32170;
Dedicated to the protection of birds, other animals, and their habitats through education and activism



NSB Bird Rescue Center


News Continued

Bidding the Bidgood's farewell: It is with mixed emotions of sadness and joy that we say goodbye to Lee and Catherine Bidgood; sadness because they have been such stalwarts in our club and in the environmental movement in general and joy because they are embarking on another stage in their lives, one which they have been planning for some time. They will be moving out of the area and will no longer be able to participate in our club, except or course in spirit. Lee and Catherine were involved with the club since their arrival 27 years ago. Then it was called the New Smyrna Beach Audubon Society. It was formed by people whose initial interest was the establishment of Smyrna Dunes Park from lands the Coast Guard declared superfluous to their needs.

Since then, Lee and Catherine have been very active in the club. Lee was President from 1985-1987 and Conservation Chair since then. He has been Vice President for the ten years of my presidency. You are aware of his Conservation Notes in the Skimmer, and many of you remember is regular columns in the NSB Observer and other writings in local newspapers. He has been successful in reducing herbicide and pesticide use in schools, fostering the use of Solar PV cells on homes and schools, focusing attention on global warming and many other issues. Catherine was our Membership Chair and editor of The Skimmer for 12 years in times before the computer. Most recently she has been our Publicity Chair and I can't tell you how many people came to our meetings because they saw her articles in the local newspapers.

I appreciate everything they have done for the club. I will truly miss them and wish them Godspeed in their new home.

Volusia Audubon groups sponsor Tomoka Science Fair. For the fifth year in a row the three Audubon groups in Volusia County partnered to provide judges and prizes for the Tomoka Regional Science Fair. It was held at the Advanced Technology Center in Daytona Beach on the 20th of January, 2007. The judges included Dale Samler (West Volusia Audubon), Caroline Russell (Halifax RiverAudubon) and Ken Gunn and Don Picard (Southeast Volusia Audubon). We looked at twenty six junior level projects and seven senior level projects. The projects invilved the environment, conservation, and alternative energy sources. Prizes included $100 for First Place Senior and Junior projects and $50 for Second Place Junior and Senior projects. The Senior winners were: Lea Schecter, Spruce Creek High, Bioluminescence: Measuring Pollutants with Light; and Frank Slimak, Mainland High, A Study of the Acquifer. The Junior winners were Blake Stacey, Deland Middle School, Does Windmill Blade Size affect Windmill Electricity Output?, and Nicholas Hundley, Heritage Middle School, Enhancing Solar Power. Congratulations to these winners and to the many other exhibitors whose hard work gives us hope for the future.

Christmas Bird Count results announced. Thank you to all who participated in the 107th Annual Christmas Bird Count. The weather conditions were not the best, and that may have caused some birds to go unnoticed. However, the overall result was phenomenal. Twenty seven adults and seven teens found a total of 43,447 birds in a record 132 species. Species not seen before in our CBC included the Canada Goose, Surf Scoter, Sora, White-breasted Nuthatch, Sedge Wren, Golden-crowned Kinglet, Gray Kingbird, Hermit Thrush, and Magnolia Warbler. In addition, a Glaucous Gull was sighted in our count area during count week.

The CBC results are a compelling reminder of what a small number of dedicated volunteers can do in a short period of time. Obviously a single sighting of a new species is not a trend, but over time scientists may be able to use these results to determine trends in our environment.