Augusta-Aiken Audubon Bi-Monthly Meeting Minutes July 8, 2021

At 7:10 – After a brief delay arranging computers and getting Zoom established and verified, Lois kicked off the July Audubon meeting.  Approximately 15 people were in attendance in person with another 10 joining in Zoom.

  • Doug Walker described up coming presentations
    • September – Doug and Alice Walker will provide a presentation about their birding trip in Iceland
    • November – John Seely, a former National Park Service employee from Columbia, will provide a presentation on Congaree
    • Calling all ideas for 2022!  Contact Doug
  • Doug introduced Callie Oldfield, Ph.D.  Callie passionately described current freshwater research and plans for expanding ecological research at Phinizy. 

At 7:58 – Lois Stacey began the business portion of the meeting.

  • A look around the room and online confirmed that a quorum was present
  • Given COVID challenges, this was the first opportunity to present the slate for the next round of club officers.  Office elections are supposed to happen in May.  The previous year’s officers have been continuing in their roles.  For the upcoming cycle (through May 2022), the candidates were:  Mark Chandler as Secretary, Gerald May as Treasurer, Brandon Heitkamp as Vice President, and Eric Monaco as President-Elect.  A motion to accept the proposed officers was made and seconded.  A show of hands was taken and the motion was passed.
  • Alice Walker updated that Hollow Creek water monitoring had begun
  • Gerald provided the current financial status
    • Previous balance $14338.81 + money in of $12 – money out of $492 = Current Balance of $13858.81
  • It was brought up that funding is available at the State and Local level to help organizations that had funding impacted from COVID.  While our Society was not impacted much, Brandon took note of the information for Silver Bluff.
  • Doug explained that previously a $500 grant had been received from Master Gardeners to help fund a pollinator garden at East Aiken Elementary School of the Arts.  The $492 expenditure reported from the Treasurer was the use of the grant money.  Several weeks ago, Doug and volunteers completed the work. 
  • Doug reiterated the Hollow Creek water monitoring project is underway, and noted the Eldridges did a macro invertebrate study in May.  The next survey, due in August is being scheduled.  Doug also plans a trail cleaning event sometime around the end of July.  Volunteers sought.
  • Brandon Heitkamp introduced Mr. Orum Snow – a new intern at Silver Bluff.  Mr. Snow is a forestry graduate from Auburn University.
  • Brandon reported that a birding blind at Silver Bluff stork ponds has been completed.
  • Brandon reported that Storks and Coffee would be on 7 August.  Sign up.  Small groups will be at 830, 930, and 1030. 
  • There is a contest for Storks and Coffee – guess the high count of Storks leading up to the 7 August event. 
  • Pond lowering at the first part will commence next week.
  • Silver Bluff hours are 30 minutes before dawn to 30 minutes after dusk.  There has been lots of hikers and visitors to Silver Bluff.  Brandon is looking for Saturday morning volunteers to help greet new comers.
  • Moth night at Phinizy on 7/24.
  • All field trips for 2021 are posted on the website

At 8:19, the meeting was adjourned.

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