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GOS 2017 Spring Meeting

ANNOUNCING
The Georgia Ornithological Society’s
Spring Meeting
May 19-21, 2017
Unicoi State Park and Lodge
1788 Highway 356
Helen, Georgia 30545


 

SATURDAY NIGHT’S KEYNOTE PRESENTATION

Avian Studies at Georgia Gwinnett College


Jill Penn, Ph.D, Mia Malloy Ph.D, and
Maribel Fernandez, M.S.
Georgia Gwinnett College

Jill Penn holds a B.S. in Engineering Chemistry from Oakland University and a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from Princeton University. She was a Postdoctoral fellow at Harvard Medical School, a Lecturer at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, and an Adjunct Professor at Emmanuel College in Boston. She currently is an Assistant Professor of Biology at Georgia Gwinnett College (GGC) and researches songbirds in the metro Atlanta area. She volunteers at the Panola Mountain State Park banding station and color bands Brown-headed Nuthatches at GGC.

Mia Malloy is an Assistant Professor of Biology at GCC and her research interests are focused on bird conservation in Gwinnett County. She is working on a collaborative project studying breeding behavior and family genetics of the Brown-headed Nuthatch. She also tracks GGC bird diversity through audio and visual point counts, as well as mark-recapture studies. Mia earned her degrees at the University of Georgia and during her graduate school and postdoctoral position there, she helped develop and teach the Avian Biology Maymester Study Abroad Program in Costa Rica, which is still running today. She also co-taught an introduction to birds course and co-authored a textbook, Birds in Our Lives: Dwelling in an Avian World, to accompany the course.

Maribel Fernandez received a Master’s degree in Animal Production Systems from the University of Minnesota (UMN) in 1998. She started working as Extension educator for the UMN Extension Service in 1999, where she developed educational programs and individual farms analyses with a focus on animal husbandry and natural resource conservation. She started teaching at GGC in 2010, and developed a Biology course on agricultural practices and the impact these practices have on the environment. Her interest in natural resource conservation led her to start teaching Biology Conservation in 2015. She seeks to bring practical experience to her students by participating in an Atlanta Audubon Society project for the conservation of the Brown-headed Nuthatch.

 


 

FRIDAY NIGHT’S PRESENTATION

“Fightin’ Females: Sex and Hormones in the Florida Scrub-jay”

 

Stephen Ferguson
Ph.D. Candidate
The University of Memphis

 

Mr. Ferguson earned his B.A. from the College of Wooster (OH) and has worked on dark-eyed juncos, saltmarsh sparrows, and captive zebra and Gouldian finches. His dissertation research focuses on aggression and physiology in the Florida scrub-jay, especially the role and behavior of females.  His project and has received national and international funding, including the GOS Terrell Research Grant. Science has taken him across the country (and the world!) in pursuit of birds, the results of which he is excited to share at our Spring Meeting. 

Meeting Hotel Details

Unicoi State Park & Lodge
1788 Highway 356
Helen, Georgia 30545
Call (800) 573-9659
http://gastateparks.org/Unicoi (Call to get GOS rate)

Use the group code “GOS” to receive our group rate.
A 2-night minimum is required for the GOS rate.

Registration cut-off date is 21 April 2017 

Room Availability 
Lodge Rooms - $109 / night
(numbers below will change as reservations are made - this page will not be updated)

Loft - 20 Available
King View - 8 Available
Queen View - 8 Available
King -5 Available
Queen - 15 Available

1 Bedroom Barrel Cottage - $129 (2 Available)
2 Bedroom Barrel Cottage - $149 (1 Available)

SCHEDULE AT A GLANCE

Friday, 19 May 2017

Dinner on Your Own
6:30 to 7:30 PM – Registration and Flocking (cash bar)

7:30 to 8:30 PM – Stephen Ferguson, Ph.D. Candidate, The University of Memphis

“Fightin’ Females: Sex and Hormones in the Florida Scrub-jay”

8:30 to 8:45 PM – Discussion of Saturday Field Trips

Saturday, 20 May 2017

6:00-8:00 AM – Continental Breakfast Available

(Break Station Fireside Room)

6:45 AM – First Field Trip Departs

3:00 PM – Field Trips Return

5:30 to 6:45 PM – Flocking (cash bar) and Poster Session

6:45-8:00 PM – President’s Address, Announcements, and Banquet Dinner

(Fireside Ballroom)

8:00 to 9:00 PM – Keynote Speakers:

Jill Penn, Ph.D, Mia Malloy, Ph.D, and Maribel Fernandez, M.S.

Georgia Gwinnett College

"Avian Studies at Georgia Gwinnett College"

9:00 to 9:30 PM – Discussion of Sunday Field Trips and Species Countdown

 

Sunday, 21 May 2017

6:00-8:00 AM Continental Breakfast Available

6:45 AM – First Field Trip Departs

3:00 PM – Field Trips End, No Return Trips to Unicoi State Park

 

Registration

(note: if you are uncomfortable registering online please email president@gos.org and we'll come up with an alternative)

BE SURE TO SCROLL DOWN TO THE TOP OF THE FIELD TRIP SELECTION TO SELECT THE RELEASE

Use the links to select and pay for your registration, banquet, and field trips. If a field trip is sold out you will have the opportunity to select another. 

Ed will send you confirmation of your field trips and registration as soon as possible. 

Fill out fields, then click "add to cart" button, select # of people, and then use the "Continue Shopping" button to add more items.

At the end of the process you will be registered.  

BE SURE TO SCROLL DOWN TO THE TOP OF THE FIELD TRIP SELECTION TO SELECT THE RELEASE


 

Registration for GOS Member(s) @ $30.00 per person (Note: Spouse/immediate family may register at the member rate 

Your name will come from your Paypal Acct. If you are registering more than yourself, please indicate those names, separated by a comma in the box to the right. Your mobile phone # will help us reach you for last minute changes in field trips due to weather. (FILL OUT fields before clicking "add to cart") Registration does not include keynote, but banquet does.  If you are NOT going to the banquet but want to see the keynote, please pay for that below. 
OtherNames
Mobile Phone #

 Nonā€GOS Member(s) @ $50.00 per person
(you can become a member for only $25)

Your name will come from your Paypal Acct. If you are registering more than yourself, please indicate those names, separated by a comma in the box to the right. Your mobile phone # will help us reach you for last minute changes in field trips due to weather. (FILL OUT fields before clicking "add to cart")
OtherNames
Mobile Phone #
 

Reservation(s) for banquet @ $36.00 per person
(banquet price includes keynote speaker)

 

GOS Member - Registration(s) for Keynote Speaker only (no banquet) @ $10.00 per person 

You do not need to register for this if you are paying for the banquet.

Non-GOS Member - Registration(s) for Keynote Speaker only (no banquet) @ $20.00 per person

If it is after May 5, 2017, add $10 late fee

FIELD TRIPS  

Note: All departure/return times are to/from Unicoi State Park & Lodge, unless otherwise noted. 
 
For your personal comfort, safety, and enjoyment, always bring your binoculars, spotting scope, sturdy walking shoes, layers of clothing, rain gear, insect repellent, sun screen, water, and a lunch or snacks on all field trips. Be advised that many field trip destinations do not have bathroom facilities, so plan accordingly. 

WAIVER: You must select this item and add it to your cart.

RELEASE

 

GOS requires registration for participation in the meeting and field trips, and also requires all registrants to acknowledge the following release.  If the participant is a minor, a parent or legal guardian must acknowledge this release.

 

 

Each registrant named, both adult and minor, desires to participate in the field trips and other activities at this meeting of the Georgia Ornithological Society (GOS).  Therefore, each registrant knowingly and voluntarily grants to the GOS and its officers, committee members, and any other persons engaged in activities in connection with this meeting, a full release from any claim, liability, or cost of any nature on account of personal illness or bodily injury, loss of life, or loss or damage to property directly or indirectly arising out of the registrant’s participation in this meeting.

 

Saturday May 20, 2017

 

BRASSTOWN BALD

 

Leader: Bill Lotz.  
Depart: 6:45 AM.  Return: 3:00 PM.  
Limit: 15.  Cost: $5.00 entry/parking fee. (Bring money with you)

GPS Coordinates: N 34.8743 | W -083.8112 

 

Brasstown Bald is the tallest mountain in Georgia with an elevation of 4,784 feet.  The high elevation lends a more northerly flavor to flora and the fauna alike.  The vegetation, for example, is characterized by rosebay rhododendron, mountain laurel, yellow birch, mountain maple, and white pine; additionally, the botanically inclined may spy lingering sprouts of blight-stricken American chestnut trees.  Target bird species, many at the southern limit of their breeding range, include Ruffed Grouse, Common Raven, Veery, Canada Warbler, and Black-throated Blue Warbler.   TRIP RIGOR: MODERATE.

 

 

SMITHGALL WOODS STATE PARK

Leader: Bob Sargent.  
Depart: 6:45 AM.  Return: 3:00 PM.  
Limit: 15.  Cost:  $5.00 entry/parking fee (bring money with you) 
GPS Coordinates: N 34.6919 | W -083.7671 

 

 

Smithgall Woods State Park is a 5,664-acre property that contains Dukes Creek Natural Area, a premier catch and release trout stream, and has 28 miles of trails that afford access to elevations up to 2,000 feet. Burrell's Ford Road gives easy access to the Chattooga River.  Target birds include Ruffed Grouse and numerous breeding and migrating passerines.  TRIP RIGOR: MODERATE.

 

 

SOSEBEE COVE AND POPCORN OVERLOOK

Leader: Mike Weaver.  
Depart: 6:45 AM.  Return: 3:00 PM.  
Limit: 15.  
Cost: $0.00 

 

Sosebee Cove is a picturesque high-elevation north facing cove forest covering 175 acres. Due to its north-facing orientation, Sosebee Cove has a rich diversity of shade tolerant trees, shrubs, and wildflowers. The forest is a maturing second growth forest, although to many visitors the area has a feeling of being old-growth. The cove is a breeding ground for many of the mountain species we will look for, such as Wood Thrush, Veery, Chestnut-sided, Canada, and Black-throated Blue Warblers.  TRIP RIGOR: MODERATELY DIFFICULT TRAIL, BUT SHORT IN DURATION.

 

 

TRAY MOUNTAIN WILDERNESS

Leader: Charlie Muise.  
Depart: 6:45 AM.  
Return: 3:30 PM.  
Limit: 15.  
Cost: $0.00.

 

Tray Mountain, with an elevation of 4,430 ft. (1,350 m) is the 7th-highest peak in Georgia. The boundary line between White and Towns Counties bisects the mountain, but leaves the summit in Towns County. Tray Mountain is within the borders of the Chattahoochee National Forest and is part of the Tray Mountain Wilderness.  Views from Tray Mountain include the Nantahala Mountains in North Carolina and the Blue Ridge Mountains in Georgia.  This trip will feature migrant and nesting warblers, vireos, thrushes, and grosbeaks, in addition to great vistas, wildflowers, and other mountain flora and fauna.  Access to the parking area is rather rough (passenger cars should be able to do it at slow speed).  There will be a short, but steep, hike up and down on the same trail.  The parking area is a good birding location, so participants may choose to hike only part way up.  Carpooling is a must to reduce the number of vehicles.  TRIP RIGOR: MODERATE.

 

UNICOI STATE PARK

Leader: Patrick Maurice.
Depart 6:45 AM.  
Return: 12:00 PM.
Limit: 15.  
Cost: $0.00.

 

Unicoi State Park’s 1,050 acres includes a 53-acre lake, a trout stream, and > 8 miles of trails.  Target species include breeding and migrating nightjars, flycatchers, thrushes, and warblers.  TRIP RIGOR: MODERATE.


 

 Sunday May 20, 2017

 

BRASSTOWN BALD

Leader: Rachel Holzman.  
Depart: 6:45 AM.  
Return: No return trip to the State Park.  
Limit: 15.  
Cost: $5.00 entry/parking fee. (Bring money with you)
GPS Coordinates: N 34.8743 | W -083.8112 

 

 

Brasstown Bald is the tallest mountain in Georgia with an elevation of 4,784 feet.  The high elevation lends a more northerly flavor to flora and the fauna alike.  The vegetation, for example, is characterized by rosebay rhododendron, mountain laurel, yellow birch, mountain maple, and white pine; additionally, the botanically inclined may spy lingering sprouts of blight-stricken American chestnut trees.  Target bird species, many at the southern limit of their breeding range, include Ruffed Grouse, Common Raven, Veery, Canada Warbler, and Black-throated Blue Warbler.   TRIP RIGOR: MODERATE.

 

 

 


BRAWLEY MOUNTAIN

Leaders: Charlie Muise.  
Depart: 6:45 AM.  
Return: No return trip to the State Park.  
Limit: 15.
Cost $0.00.

 

This is a 4-mile hike (round-trip) that meanders up and down Brawley Mountain and follows a US Forest Service Road through the National Forest.  Migrants and breeding birds are abundant, including numerous warbler species, thrushes, tanagers, and hawks.  Target birds include Golden-winged Warbler and Worm-eating Warbler, Scarlet and Summer Tanager, and Broad-winged Hawk. A Ruffed Grouse or 2 along the trail is also possible.  TRIP RIGOR: STRENUOUS. 

 

 


IVY LOG GAP AND GUMLOG ROADS 

Leader: Bill Lotz.  
Depart: 6:45 AM.  
Return: No return trip to the State Park.  
Limit: 15.  Cost: $0.00.

 

This trip will start at the eastern entrance to Ivy Log Gap with stops along Byers Creek Road, Ivy Log Gap, Ravencliff Road, and Gumlog Road.  Target species include Kentucky, Blackburnian, Cerulean, and Bay-breasted Warbler, Rose-breasted Grosbeak, thrushes, Summer and Scarlet Tanagers, Broad-winged Hawk, and Ruffed Grouse.  We’ll make several stops along Forest Service roads to enjoy the species that depend on this section of national forest.  Carpooling will be necessary to reduce the number of cars on the narrow and winding roads.  TRIP RIGOR: EASY.   

 

 

 

SOSEBEE COVE AND POPCORN OVERLOOK

Leader: Patrick Maurice.  
Depart: 6:45 AM.  Return: 3:00 PM.  
Limit: 15.  
Cost: $0.00 

 

Sosebee Cove is a picturesque high-elevation north facing cove forest covering 175 acres. Due to its north-facing orientation, Sosebee Cove has a rich diversity of shade tolerant trees, shrubs, and wildflowers. The forest is a maturing second growth forest, although to many visitors the area has a feeling of being old-growth. The cove is a breeding ground for many of the mountain species we will look for, such as Wood Thrush, Veery, Chestnut-sided, Canada, and Black-throated Blue Warblers.  TRIP RIGOR: MODERATELY DIFFICULT TRAIL, BUT SHORT IN DURATION.


UNICOI STATE PARK

Leader: Bob Sargent 
Depart 6:45 AM.  
Return: 12:00 PM. 
Limit: 15.  
Cost: $0.00.

 

Unicoi State Park’s 1,050 acres includes a 53-acre lake, a trout stream, and > 8 miles of trails.  Target species include breeding and migrating nightjars, flycatchers, thrushes, and warblers.  TRIP RIGOR: MODERATE.

 

 

 

Release and Waiver (if you didn't click it up above)

WAIVER: You must select this item and add it to your cart.

RELEASE

 

GOS requires registration for participation in the meeting and field trips, and also requires all registrants to acknowledge the following release.  If the participant is a minor, a parent or legal guardian must acknowledge this release.

 

 

Each registrant named, both adult and minor, desires to participate in the field trips and other activities at this meeting of the Georgia Ornithological Society (GOS).  Therefore, each registrant knowingly and voluntarily grants to the GOS and its officers, committee members, and any other persons engaged in activities in connection with this meeting, a full release from any claim, liability, or cost of any nature on account of personal illness or bodily injury, loss of life, or loss or damage to property directly or indirectly arising out of the registrant’s participation in this meeting.