2023-2024 Meetings

December Roost (Social) at Hot Plate Brewing

Date: Sunday, December 3, 2023
Time: 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Location: 1 School St, Pittsfield, MA (in person)

The Hoffmann Bird Club is excited to announce its first monthly social event, our December Roost. The event will be held at Hot Plate Brewing in Pittsfield on Sunday, December 3rd from 1-4pm

Come to the Roost to socialize with club members, meet new folks, and build community! We will also have the board game Wingspan available if you want to play, learn, or observe.

We hope you’ll stop in and join us!

Hot Plate Brewing offers alcoholic and non-alcoholic drink options for purchase, and visitors are welcome to bring their own food and snacks. 

Hot Plate Brewing is located on School St. in Pittsfield, off North Street (across from the Beacon Cinema). Parking is available on the street along School St. and North St. (metered spaces are free on the weekends, but note signs for any limitations). Additional parking is available in the First St. lot between Eagle and Fenn St.

December 2023 Meeting: HBC Member Night

Date: Monday, December 11, 2023
Time: 7:00 PM
Location: Guardian Life Insurance Co., 700 South Street, Pittsfield 01201; Live, in person and via Zoom

“HBC Member’s Night” Presented by Members of the Hoffmann Bird Club!!

  • Everyone brings some delicious goodies to share! 
    • Please prepare as individual servings. 
  • HBC members select up to 10 digital images to share with club members. Bring your images on a thumb drive in order to share on a laptop at the meeting!  
    • Email hoffmannbirdclub@gmail.com to put your name down for showing slides on a ‘first come’ basis.  Please label your thumb drive with your name and bring it to the podium when you arrive.  As your turn comes up, please go up to the podium to speak so everyone, including the Zoom attendees, can hear what you’re sharing! 

Please email hoffmannbirdclub@gmail.com  to obtain more information and the zoom link.

January 2024 Meeting: Beverly and Anders Gyllenhaal

Date: Monday, January 8th, 2024
Time: 6:30 PM
Location: Virtual via Zoom

Photo of Beverly (left) and Anders (right) Gyllenhaal.

Beverly and Anders Gyllenhaal 

will present… A Wing and a Prayer: The Race to Save Our Vanishing Birds

Beverly and Anders Gyllenhaal will walk through highlights of their new book, A Wing and a Prayer: The Race to Save Our Vanishing Birds. This is the story of what is being done to save birds in the midst of dramatic downturns in North American populations. Their talk also touches on the spiritual side of birds and how birding can strengthen your faith. Their presentation draws on their 25,000 miles of travel across the hemisphere researching the book, interviews with 300 people in every station in the world of birds, and scores of photos of the birds featured in these pages.  

Beverly and Anders Gyllenhaal are veteran journalists who have worked for decades as reporters and editors. Beverly was a feature writer, then food editor, and finally syndicated columnist and cookbook author. Her Desperation Dinners series has a quarter million copies in print. Anders was an investigative reporter at The Miami Herald, then went on to lead newsrooms in Raleigh, Minneapolis, Miami and Washington. He’s long been active in journalism circles, serving on the board of the Pulitzer Prizes, Society of Newspaper Editors and Journalism Funding Partners. As their work slowed down, they started following birds and photographing and writing about them for magazines and newspapers around the country. They also publish a photo-rich website, called, “Flying Lessons; What We’re Learning From the Birds” 

[see: https://flyinglessons.us/ ]

Please email hoffmannbirdclub@gmail.com  to obtain more information and the zoom link.

February 2024 Meeting: Dr. Danielle Whittaker

Date: Monday, February 12, 2024
Time: 6:30 PM
Location: Virtual via Zoom

Dual image. On left is a photo of Dr. Danielle Whittaker and on the right is the cover of her book "The Secret Perfume of Birds".

Dr. Danielle Whittaker  

will present… “Using Common Scents: How Songbirds Communicate With Odors”

Smell has been called the most ancient sense, and songbirds, like many other creatures, make abundant use of it. The primary source of odors in most birds is preen oil, secreted by the uropygial gland and used by birds in grooming and maintaining their feathers. By smelling this oil, birds can recognize and assess potential mates and rivals. Recent evidence suggests that the odors are produced not by the birds themselves, but by symbiotic microbes associated with the uropygial gland. Birds’ social behavior affects the composition of these microbial communities, which results in birds from the same group having a similar odor. Danielle J. Whittaker, author of The Secret Perfume of Birds, will discuss several studies that have contributed to debunking the long-standing myth that birds have no sense of smell, and will describe the many ways that scent enhances avian life.

Dr. Danielle J. Whittaker is an evolutionary biologist and the Managing Director of the Center for Oldest Ice Exploration (COLDEX) at Oregon State University (Corvallis). From gibbons in Indonesia to the Dark-eyed Juncos of North America, her research focuses on the forces that influence animal behavior, mate selection, and, ultimately, evolution. Whittaker was previously managing director of BEACON, the Center for the Study of Evolution in Action, at Michigan State University.

Please email hoffmannbirdclub@gmail.com  to obtain more information and the zoom link.

March 2024 Meeting: Jennie Duberstein, Ph.D.

Date: Monday, March 11, 2024
Time: 6:30 PM
Location: Virtual via Zoom

Jennie Duberstein, Ph.D.  

will present…“Working Across Borders to Conserve Birds and Habitats in the Southwestern U.S. and Northwestern Mexico” 

Dual photo: Left is a photo of Jennie Duberstein, Ph.D. Right is a photo of a Vermillion Flycatcher.

Southwest United States and Northwest Mexico is a region of incredible biological and cultural diversity. Birds and habitats don’t recognize international boundaries, and neither can our efforts to conserve them. Successful conservation requires cross-border collaboration that takes into account not just the biological needs, but also the social needs of the region. The Sonoran Joint Venture is a binational partnership that works to conserve the unique birds and habitats of the southwestern U.S. and northwestern Mexico. The Sonoran Joint Venture brings together partners from both sides of the border to develop and implement innovative programs to address the biggest conservation priorities of the region and ensure a healthy world for birds, other wildlife, and people.

Jennie Duberstein is the director of the Sonoran Joint Venture. She is a wildlife biologist and conservation social scientist who has spent her professional career working to build partnerships for bird and habitat conservation across the United States and northwest Mexico. Jennie has directed environmental education programs, developed community-based conservation projects in region, developed and taught courses and workshops on bird identification, ecotourism, and bird monitoring, and has studied species including Double-crested Cormorants and wading birds in Sonora and Yellow-billed Cuckoos in Arizona. She has also worked with young birders for the past twenty-five years, teaching field ornithology and generally helping connect young people with opportunities. Jennie received her B.S. in Wildlife Biology from Virginia Tech and her M.S. and Ph.D. from the School of Natural Resources and the Environment at the University of Arizona.

Please email hoffmannbirdclub@gmail.com  to obtain more information and the zoom link.

Dual photo: Left is a photo of the Sonoran Desert. Right Is the Sonoran Joint Venture logo.

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