Besides the regular field trips each month, the Nature Club conducts several special events throughout each year. On the first Saturday in May, we hold Gloucester County Bird Quest. Also in May, we hold our annual plant sale at the regular May club meeting. In the summer we offer a series of special field trips, along with the Firefly Festival in June. In the Autumn, the Mad Hatter's Tree Party takes place in October, and every winter we hold the Audubon Christmas Bird Count. For more information on each of these events you can look to our most recent newsletter or check back every few weeks for updates to this page.

Other events held in the past that could return at any time include the Gloucester County Environmental Commission Conference and the East Coast Vulture Festival.

Upcoming Nature Club Events

Field Trip: Gobble Wobble Walk at Chestnut Branch Park, Mantua
Friday, November 24, 9:30 am

Trip Leaders: Jayne Rhynard and Marie Hageman

Since Black Friday is no longer in the store for just one day and the deals have been going on for weeks- no need to shop today! Join us to walk off that stuffing and pie on Black Friday, November 24 at 9:30 AM at Chestnut Branch Park in Mantua. We can enjoy some brisk fall foliage and see what migrants have come to spend winter with us. There might be a turkey that escaped the dinner table, sparrows, bluebirds and hawks around the edges. We will take a look at the tornado damaged area 2 years after. Bring your own binoculars and we will meet near the Butterfly Garden.

Program: Bird Coloration: The Hows and Whys
Thursday, November 9, 2023 at 7:00 pm at the Holy Nativity Lutheran Church, Wenonah, NJ (directions below)
Presenter: Shujaath Mehdi.
Program Coordinator: Rich Dilks 856-468-6342

As one might expect from the amazing diversity of colors and patterns exhibited by more than 10,000 bird species found in the world, birds can see color. The colors in the feathers of a bird are formed in two different ways, from either pigments or caused by the light-scattering structure of the feather. In some cases feather colors are the result of a combination of pigment and structural colors. The greens of some parrots are the result of yellow pigments overlying the blue-reflecting characteristic of the feathers. Why are some feathers iridescent? Is it true that the plumage of bluebirds is not truly blue? Can birds see in the ultraviolet and how does that effect how they see themselves and the world?

Please join Shujaath Mehdi as he explores the fascinating science behind the Whys and Hows of this great diversity and majesty of color in the avian universe.

Directions: The Holy Nativity Lutheran Church is located just off Rt. 553 (Woodbury Glassboro Rd.) immediately south of the traffic light at Mantua Ave. The church parking lot can be accessed by entrances on either Woodbury-Glassboro Road or Lenape Trail (first left off of Mantua Ave).

Event: National Audubon Christmas Bird Count
Sunday, October 29, 1:00 – 3:00pm

Please join us on Saturday December 16 for the National Audubon Society Bird Count. The count involves exploring and canvassing a large circle within the county, divided into 13 ‘pie slices’ delineated by roadways and waterways. We count everything we hear and see, starting with Owls in the early morning hours and finishing near dusk. Historically we’ve tallied 90-100 bird species on count day.

The period in which all of the counts throughout the country, and beyond, is from Dec.14 - Jan.5. Our count falls on the first Saturday of the period.

Each of the 13 zones has a leader(s) and assistants that travel their zone. Experience is not necessary and leaders and others are always willing to show and share the experience. We dress warm, take binoculars, scopes, and checklist, as well as snacks, and field guides to confirm species.

Most folks like to walk areas but car travel and spotting is a big part of it too! Especially with limited places to walk and park.

The first Northwestern Gloucester County Count was held on December 29, 1951 ( five and a half months before I was born) led by Will Middleton the first compiler. Most of the participants were members of the Gloucester County Nature Club!

Please join us for a fun day out in nature. Rain or shine (or snow) the show will go on. If you know someone that already participates and would like to join them, give them a holler. If you wish to be placed in an area or have a preference as to where you would like to go, let me know.

Ron Kegel, compiler 856-881-9262

Past Nature Club Events

Bird Quest 2022 was held on Saturday May 7, 2022. Please go to the new Bird Quest website at https://birdquest.gcnatureclub.org/ for details.

Go to the Northwestern Gloucester County Christmas Bird Count 2022 Wrap-up page to view findings from this event that took place on December 17, 2022.

The 2016 NW Gloucester County Christmas Bird Count was held on December 16, 2016. See the CBC Wrap-Up page for details.

MAD HATTER'S TREE PARTY 2015 was held on Sunday October 25, 2015, and was a big success!

BIRD QUEST 2015 was held on Saturday May 2, 2015. See the Bird Quest 2015 Wrap-up Page for a wrap-up.

A TIRE CLEANUP was held on Sunday March 18, 2011. See the Tire Cleanup photo page to view some photos of the event.

THE MAD HATTER'S TREE PARTY was held on Saturday October 23, 2010, and was a great success. 169 people participated (including many families and children), and another 106 people had to be added to a waiting list and unfortunately turned away. See the Mad Hatter's photo page to see some photos of the event.

The EAST COAST VULTURE FESTIVAL was held on March 3, 2012. Go to www.eastcoastvulturefestival.org for details about the Vulture Festival.

BIRD QUEST 2009 was held on Saturday May 2, 2009. The event marked the 10th anniversary of the Gloucester County Bird Quest. We had many special events to help celebrate this year. Thank you all for coming in the less than favorable weather. The response from the people who participated was This Year was the best EVER! Our winning team saw 76 species while for the day we had 128 species seen by all groups. We had 285 people registered and amazingly despite the weather almost all of them showed up back at the park. For some pictures from the event, click on the following link: Bird Quest 2009 Photos.

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