WBNC Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club, southwestern Pennsylvania
Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club

Birding and nature observation
in Westmoreland County
southwestern Pennsylvania

About the club || Meetings || Field Trips & Outings || Newsletters & other Docs
Links || Join || Application Form || Sitemap


Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club

The Westmoreland Bird and Nature Club is a natural history organization serving Westmoreland County and surrounding areas. The WBNC is primarily an outdoor club averaging about 30 field trips a year for birds, butterflies, flowering plants, dragonflies and damselflies, trees and general ecology. Outings can be hiking, canoeing or cycling in nature. Sometimes impromptu field trips are organized over the internet. In addition, members participate in the Audubon Christmas Bird Count and the Pennsylvania Annual Migration Count in early May. Field trips are sometimes held in conjunction with the Botanical Society of Westmoreland County (BSWC), and the Three Rivers Birding Club (3RBC). Several members also belong to the Western Pennsylvania Mushroom Club. There are three general membership meetings a year including a summer picnic. All meetings are held in the Barn at the Donohoe Center, 218 Donohoe Road, Greensburg. The 10-18 page newsletter entitled The Syrinx is published four times a year summarizing past field trips, upcoming events, natural history information, and recent bird sightings. The Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club (formerly Westmoreland County Bird Club) formed on Feb 26, 1981 to promote interest in birds and conservation and to provide field trips in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania. The first newsletter, Vol. 1 No. 1, was for March 1981. In that newsletter five field trips were scheduled. Seven people were listed as paid charter members.

Club Membership: $7 individual/family. Paid memberships currently stand at 217. All Membership Dues are due in January, unless you joined after September 1st. See Join for details.

facebook group: Westmoreland Bird and Nature Club Find us on a facebook group the fb open group is interactive (unlike this static site), contains recent photographs, wildlife sightings, etc.

red trillium

Current officers of the club

Executive Committee - Dick Byers, Tom Pearson, Tom & Billie Moser, Dale Matusa, Tim Vechter, Joe & Arlene Kalinowski
Treasurer - Georgia Shalek
Secretary - Billie Ann Moser
Newsletter Editor - Dick Byers
Bird Records - Tom Kuehl
Archives Scrapbook - vacant
Website and facebook - Tim Vechter

History of club officers

Great Blue Heronry, 2014     Great Blue Heronry, 2014
Great Blue Heron colony, April 1 2014. Photos by Tim Vechter.

Great Blue Heronry     Great Blue Heronry, 2014

Great Blue Heronry
Great Blue Heron, April 1 2014.

Black-crowned Night-Heron, 2014     Black-crowned Night-Heron, 2014
Black-crowned Night-Heron at Loyalhanna Creek downtown Latrobe, by the Rt981 (Lloyd Ave) bridge, March 27 2014.
"In Pennsylvania, the black-crowned night-heron is listed as state endangered and protected under the Game and Wildlife Code." Photos by Tim Vechter, 2014.

Gray Screech Owl, 2013     Red`Screech Owl, 2013
Screech Owls, gray and red phase, photos by Dick Byers, 2013.

Fox Sparrow, 2013
Fox Sparrow, photo by Dick Byers, 2013.

Harlequin Duck - Keystone State Park, Nov. 19 2008
Harlequin Duck at Keystone State Park, Nov. 19 2008.
Reported by Linda Huber & Ken Byerly.
Photo by Dick Byers.

Pine Siskin - Latrobe PA - 21.Jan.2009
Pine Siskin in Latrobe PA, Jan. 21 2009.

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Sandhill Crane

Lake Ethel in Derry, PA
Mid December 2007 to last week of April 2008.

Sandhill Crane Sandhill Crane

Sandhill Crane Sandhill Crane Sandhill Crane

More Sandhill Crane info is at wikipedia || Middle Creek || Platte River Nebraska || Mississippi Sandhill Crane National Wildlife Refuge || International Crane Foundation

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Upland Sandpiper Upland Sandpiper
Hutter's Farm
Mammoth-Kecksburg PA
May 25 1996
Sedge Wren
3rd Bridge
Loyalhanna Creek
Latrobe PA
June 7 1997
Sedge Wren

Both species are listed as threatened in Pennsylvania by the PA Department of Natural Resources. A threatened species may become endangered within the foreseeable future throughout their range in PA. An endangered species is in danger of extirpation throughout their range in PA.
Endangered & Threatened Species of Pennsylvania: PA Game Commission (Animals, Birds) || DCNR (Plants) || Fish & Boat Commission (Fishes, Turtles, Snakes, Lizards)

Atlas of Breeding Birds in Pennsylvania


Club Meeting

Program: “Darkest Africa”

Tuesday April 23, 2019 at 6:30 PM
Donohoe Center Barn
218 Donohoe Road, Greensburg PA 15601.

Our speaker will be Bill Powers who builds trail cameras for photographing wildlife. His motion- sensitive digital cameras bring you the Hays Eagle nest every spring. Join us to see and hear his tales and experiences on his last visit to the dark continent. Listen to the tales of wildlife scientists and game wardens who buy his trail cameras and Bill’s own experience photographing the beasts of South Africa, Botswana, and Uganda. Come prepared for an interesting evening.

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Click for Latrobe, Pennsylvania Forecast

Field Trips for April through June 2019

Cancellation Policy:In the event of inclement weather, please call the field trip leader in advance to confirm if the outing is on or canceled. The leaders have the right to cancel. Please check weather reports and road conditions. If there's any question, please call the leaders for confirmation. Car pooling is a good idea. Field trips are free and open to the public.

Weather for Latrobe (weather.com) || Weather for Westmoreland County || Weather(underground) for PA

Wed. Apr. 10 Yellow Creek State Park
Meet at the park office at 9:00am.

Tues. Apr. 23 Club Meeting.
Details above.

Sat. Apr. 27 Blacklick Valley
Meet at the parking lot at 8:00 am for early warblers. Directions: Drive east on Route 22 from New Alexandria for 24 miles past the intersection of Route 403. Once beyond 403, in about a mile, look for a left turn lane for McFeaters Road. Turn left on McFeaters and drive straight to the parking lot on the end, about 1.25 miles.

Sun. Apr. 28 BushyRun Battlefield S.P.
Botanical Society walk at 1:00pm. Park next to the pavilion.

Sat. May 4 Otto-Magdalene Ackerman Nature Reserve
For a wildflower/bird walk at 10:00 am by Mark Bowers & Loree Speedy. Directions: From the WEST - at the intersection of PA 48 & US 30, travel east on US 30 for 1/2 mile and make a left onto Leger Rd. (Sheetz on right-hand Corner.) From the EAST – Travel west on US 30 thru Irwin 2 miles past Robbin Station Rd. light to Leger Rd. (Sheetz on left-hand intersection and turn right onto Leger Rd. BOTH travel 2 miles on Leger Rd. looking for the Ackerman Preserve sign on the left and park at the end of the grassy strips between two homes.

Sat. May 18 Deadman’s Hollow
Join Jim Pemberton at the Bike Trail parking lot at 9:00 am. Directions: Heading south on Route 48, cross the Boston Bridge and turn right on Smithfield St., then immediately right again and descend downhill into the parking lot where we’ll meet.

Sat. May 11 Spring Migration Count
Contact Dick for an assignment or where you’d like to go. This is a county wide count. If you live in the county, you can submit a feeder count and neighborhood count. Tallysheets can be sent to you via email.

Sun. May 19 Botanical Society walk at Nature Park. 1:00 pm.
Meet at the red barn.

Sat. June 1 Evening Vespers
Meet at the Darlington Inn at 4:00 pm for the buffet dinner before heading to Spruce Flats Bog. RSVP Karen Jackson by Wed. May 29 (pabirder2000@yahoo.com 724-668-7421)

Sat. June 8 PV Park
Join Tom Pearson at 9:30 a.m. for a general nature walk. Turn south from the McDonald’s light on Rt. 22 in Murrysville onto Trafford Rd. Cross the RR tracks and turn right onto Pleasant Valley Rd. Go 1.2 miles from there to the parking lot – left side.

Sat. June 22 Wetlands walk
We’ll begin at Youngwood Swamp at 9:00 a.m., then head for the Sewickley Creek wetlands along the Hutchinson Parkway. Both these areas are in the club book. Directions to Youngwood Swamp: From Rt. 119 in Youngwood, turn east onto Depot St. Follow Depot across the RR tracks and look for the parking lot on your right.

Note: for the email addresses replace "_AT_" with "@", and "_DOT_ with ".", without the quotes. This is done to help foil spamming programs.

Bookmark outings.htm on a mobile device for quick download of scheduled outings for a text only listing of outings.

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Samples of recent newsletter and Christmas Bird Count results:

April 4 2019 - there was a brief ceremony at the County Commissioner's meeting in the Courthouse honoring the publication of the club book written by Dick Byers, with a reading of a proclamation (written by Betsy Aiken of the Westmoreland Land Trust).

The Syrinx, Voicebox of the Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club, Vol. 36 No. 4, Oct - Dec 2017
Syrinx Oct - Dec 2017-2.pdf

Big Sit - all time 2008 to 2010 yr.pdf. The sit takes place at the wetland head of the lake at Keystone State Park in Derry Twp. All sightings are recorded from morning till evening.
Big Sit - all time 2 10 yr.pdf

The Syrinx, Voicebox of the Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club, Vol. 34 No. 3, July - September 2015
SyrinxJulySep 2015 B.pdf

The Syrinx, Voicebox of the Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club, Vol. 34 No. 2, April - June 2015

The Syrinx, Voicebox of the Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club, Vol. 33 No. 1, Jan. –Mar. 2014

40th BUSHY RUN S.P. CHRISTMAS BIRD COUNT 2013 (114th) [Can open in Wordpad]
BushyRun 2013 Syrinx.doc

Click for Syrinx Newsletter          Click for Syrinx Newsletter

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Links to other web sites about nature and birds seen locally. These links can become inactive at any time.

Links to external websites will open in separate windows

Photos by Mark McConaughy:

Pine Siskin, White-winged Crossbill at Bushy Run Battlefield, Westmoreland Co., Feb. 2009

WBNC outing to West Lebanon, Indiana County, Feb. 24 2008.

Common Redpolls at Bushy Run Battlefield Park

Sandhill Crane at Derry Lake, Dec. 31 2007.

Herring Gull Nest in Armstrong County, 29 May 2005.

Short-billed Dowitcher at Mammoth Wetlands and Mammoth Lake, Sat. May 14 2005.

Hays Bald Eagle Cam in Pittsburgh || University of Pittsburgh Falcon Cam || Pittsburgh Gulf Tower Falcon Cam || Osprey Cam southeast PA

Westmoreland Botanical Society

Western Pennsylvania Mushroom Club

Three Rivers Birding Club

Amateur Astronomers Association of Pittsburgh

Botanical Society of Western Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania Birding News at ABA || Birding mailing lists at ABA

Archives of PABIRDS@LIST.AUDUBON.ORG, Bird discussion list for Pennsylvania, Login required. || To subscribe or unsubscribe to the PABIRDS discussion list

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pink lady's slipper

To join Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club

Please send check or money order, made out to Westmoreland Bird & Nature Club to:
Georgia Shalek
1481 W Pgh. St.
Scottdale PA 15683
$7 individual/family. $20 supporting membership.
Include your name and address for the mailing list. Phone number, Email address, etc., is optional.

All Membership Dues are due in January, unless you joined after September 1st.
You can print and use an online application form by Clicking here.

current club patch

previous club patch

WBNC Bumper Sticker

Bookmark outings.htm on a mobile device for quick download of scheduled outings. outings.htm is a text only bare bones web page.

facebook group: Westmoreland Bird and Nature ClubFind us on this facebook group for a more interactive online interface, recent sightings and photographs.

Web page, and photos (unless otherwise noted), by Tim Vechter.

For places to bird in Westmoreland County click here

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