Volume III Number 5
Published by the Ornithology Group,Outdoor Nature Club, Houston,Texas
FOHTHC OiZKG- AC TIVITISS
Lunar Watch , See "Clearing House"
6:00 A.M. .Field Trip to Galveston-Hich Is....Buffalo Stadium
8:00 P.M. .Business Meeting 5315 Schuler
RFPORT OF AUGUST 14 FIELD TRIP
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Hot weather (it was 96° in Pious ton) didn't stop the 11 birders who
followed Field Trip Chairman Josiephine Wilkin along Miller Road near
Juliff on a late afternoon bird watching "Safari.11 However, like our
Houston weather, birds can be most unpredictable—as the members of
this particular field trip soon found out. Few of the birds anticipated in the August SPOONBILL were seen (probably due to the extreme
heat and drought) and virtually all of the birds observed were in
the process of moulting.
Oddly enough, two of the three highlights of the trip did not
involve birds! The first was the discovery of a snake caught in a
spider's web some 7 feet above the ground! True, the snake was small
(about 7 inches long) and the spider large (about a 5-inch leg-spread)
but it was still a most unusual sight to behold. The second highlight
took place shortly after this and it, too, involved a snake—a
Copperhead to be exact—which our daring young Chairman, fee Ramsey,
immediately seized by the neck with his bare hands! Of course, the
snake was rather small (about 14 inches long), and Mr. Ramsey did
use a stick in order to pin its head down, but even so the incident
aroused considerable anxiety for the welfare of our "too~young~to~dien
Chairman on the part of the female contingent of the "expedition"!
Before releasing the reptile (a move of which the general public
would not approve—but which the O.G. felt was justifiable in that
reptiles are the ancestors of birds!) Mr-Ramsey carefully pointed
out the characteristics of the poisonous species.
So much for the herpetological highlights of the field trip—and
back once again to the birds. A Summer Tanager chasing a Bluebird
at fairly close range provided the group with an interesting red and
blue color contrast between two birds of widely-separated families.
Other species of interest recorded during the trip included Crested
Flycatchers, a Wood Pewee (feeding Phoebe-like along a fence), Barn
Swallows (vanguards of the big fall movement described under "Clearing House11), and Barred Owls (heard calling).
At dusk, Mrs. Wilkin opened her ever-ready picnic basket, and
everyone enjoyed r late snack by the light of a beautiful, full Texas
moon—a most appropriate and memorable way to wind up the dayTs
» • o
The ardent birders who defied 90-plus temperatures in order to
make the trip: Jerry Baker, Betty Crowley, Conrad Beats, John Frels,
Harriet Hunt, Ruth Moorman, Jamos Murray, Norma Oates, Noel Pettingell,
Mac Ramsey, and Josiephine Wilkin.