Help Expand e-Bird Photo ID

The magic of the Photo ID tool comes from the 2.5 million bird photos that eBird users have submitted with their checklists. You can help us expand this amazing tool to new areas, simply by drawing boxes around birds. Each box improves our computer vision algorithms—boosting the accuracy of the Photo ID tools. Who doesn’t like to view cool bird photos and contribute to cutting-edge research at the same timeHelp us outCornell is looking for more birders to post photos in their e-bird lists, so that the Merlin app for bird ID using photos will have more to learn from. submitted by Dixie Sommers

Film Screening: Hometown Habitat
WHEN: Thursday, March 9; 7:00 – 8:30 PM
WHERE: Oakton Library, 10304 Lynnhaven Place, Oakton, VA

DESCRIPTIONHometown Habitat is an environmental education documentary focused on showing how and why native plants are critical to the survival and vitality of local ecosystems–and how you can make a difference with the landscaping in your own yard. Free and open to the public, but you must register in advance. RSVP

SPONSOR: Friends of the Oakton Library

For more information about Hometown Habitat

Link to the trailer

Saving Secretive Marsh Birds
Learn about secretive marsh birds and how we can improve their habitat on February 26, 2 p.m., Sherwood Regional Library, 2501 Sherwood Hall Lane, Alexandria (Mount Vernon area) 22306 (

Some marsh birds, like the king rail, Virginia rail, sora, least bittern and American bittern are difficult to detect, often hidden in dense vegetation.  Wetland-dependent, marsh birds have adaptations like cryptically-colored plumage that helps them be secretive.  Secretive marsh birds are in decline across their range and are designated in need of conservation in most states. Because they are hard to find and see, there is relatively sparse information available on their ecology.

Patrice Nielson, a University of Maryland Ph. D. candidate and Northern Virginia resident, surveyed for secretive species at 51 points in 25 marshes in the Washington, D.C., area in 2013, 2014 and 2015.  She collected data on marsh area, buffer width, vegetation/water interspersion, vegetation characteristics, amount of flooding and invertebrate abundance at each point.  She modeled the presence of secretive marsh birds as a function of habitat characteristics.   Among many findings, she found that secretive marsh birds were using both restored and natural marshes, marshes with and without invasive plant species and marshes with a variety of dominant vegetation species.

To help these birds, she maintains that decreasing woody vegetation, increasing tall vegetation cover and managing for a variety of co-dominant species to avoid monocultures would likely improve habitat for these wetland birds.

This program is sponsored by the Friends of Dyke Marsh, Audubon Society of Northern Virginia, the D.C. Audubon Society, the Northern Virginia Bird Club and the Virginia Society of Ornithology.

  • 101 Great Birds From Around the World
    Crowder-Messersmith Conservation Fund Annual Talk
    Thursday, October 27 from 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm Woodend Nature Sanctuary Featuring Mark Garland, popular ANS travel & foray leader Join us for a celebration of the remarkable diversity of birds with a look at some of the extraordinary appearances, sounds, and behaviors found within the world of birds. Mark Garland coordinated the ANS travel program for 28 years, and most of the birds featured in this program were photographed on ANS programs. Mark will include stories about travel experiences throughout the talk. He was a student in Don Messersmith’s ornithology and entomology courses at the University of Maryland during the late 1970s. Light refreshments served. Donations to benefit the Crowder-Messersmith Conservation Fund are welcomed.
    RSVP: Carol Hayes 301-652-9188 x10


  • Communication options from the Club

Over the last several years the Club has added a range of communication and social media options in addition to continuing some long standing ones. The Board has adopted an Overview and Purposes of NVBC Communications Channels, both to inform members and to record the decisions made about these means of communication. The Overview can be found at this link below:
NVBC Communication Channels and Purposes

  • April 2016 Siskin

The April 2016 Siskin is now online. On a desktop PC, click on the Siskin image at the right side of this page under “Read The Current Siskin”.  On a smartphone or tablet, the Siskin image is at the bottom of this page. You can also use the Siskin tab in the horizontal navigation strip. See the magnificent photographs in full color!  Read previous issues of the Siskin in the archives.

  • Nothern Virginia Bird Club is on FACEBOOK

  • Do you use Amazon Smile??

AmazonSmile is an automatic way to support your favorite non-profit when you shop with Amazon. At no additional cost to the customer, Amazon will donate a small portion of the purchase price to the organization you’ve selected. The Northern Virginia Bird Club is now registered with Amazon Smile and you can select the Club to receive donations connected with your purchases.

On your first visit to the site, you can select an eligible 501(c)(3) organization. As a shortcut you can use This Link for NVBC .  When on the AmazonSmile site you should then see this notice in the upper left-hand corner of the screen (you may need to refresh your browser):

 After that remember (or bookmark) to shop at the AmazonSmile site. This uses the same account, shopping cart, wish list and other settings you have at Thanks to our members who selected NVBC for their Smile account and alerted us to this opportunity. To learn more about the program, visit About AmazonSmile
  • For NVABC Membership Renewal Online, go HERE
  • Notable Virginia eBird Sightings

Thanks to Gerco Hoogeweg, the Reports/Alerts page of the website now includes a Google Gadget which shows details of notable bird sightings in Virginia which have been reported to eBird. Check it out at REPORTS/ALERTS.

  • eBird Hotspots in Northern Virginia

Gerco Hoogeweg has created a map, using Google maps and functionality, which contains a comprehensive selection of birding locations in Northern Virginia. For this wonderful guide to local birding hotspots, click HERE.

  • Support Northern Virginia Bird Club

Subscribe to BWD today and you’ll receive a useful and interesting birding magazine written by birders and for birders. But even better, you will also support Northern Virginia Bird Club.

For every NEW paid BWD subscription sold through this special promotion, Northern Virginia Bird Club receives $10 from BWD!

Click on the image below to read the current Siskin

Notices, Recent Changes and Updates….

19Mar 17

Welcome to the New NVBC website

We encourage all members and bird photographers to submit latest images for the New website The List of Field Trips has been updated May-June  2017 Next General Meeting- NVBC GENERAL…

read more