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The latest issue of the Gnatcatcher, the newsletter of JVAS, is available for download and online viewing.

blue-gray gnatcatcher with its mouth openThe latest issue of the Gnatcatcher, the newsletter of Juniata Valley Audubon, is available for download and online viewing. (If you receive the paper edition, it should be arriving in mailboxes soon.) Articles in this issue include a message from the president, Laura Jackson, about saving the owls and other raptors on Amherst Island from industrial wind development; a profile of v-p Mark Bonta and his community conservation work; photos from recent JVAS field trips; reviews of two nature-related novels, Above the Waterfall by Ron Rash and Martin Marten by Brian Doyle, which sound as if they would make fine Christmas presents; information on how to take part in our annual Christmas Bird Count; and much more. Check it out!

The September-October issue of the Gnatcatcher is available for download, along with a separate brochure that includes descriptions of all the programs and field trips through December. Those events are also all now listed on the website.

red maple leafIt may be another month until the autumn equinox, but the fall season is already officially underway at JVAS. The September-October issue of the Gnatcatcher is available for download, along with a separate brochure that includes descriptions of all the programs and field trips through December. Those events are also all now listed on the website, and include a number of interesting offerings, such as a presentation on collecting and conservation in Papua New Guinea, a demonstration of Appalachian Trail hiking strategies followed by a trip to the movie theater to watch A Walk in the Woods, and a workshop on how to use eBird at Canoe Creek State Park. We're also listing the Bedford County Christmas Bird Count this year as well as the one we've traditionally organized in Blair County, for all of you who can't get enough of CBC festivities. We hope to see you at our monthly program meetings at the Bellwood-Antis Public Library as well as out in the woods, to share what we hope will be a fun-filled and beautiful autumn in central Pennsylvania.

We've just released the May-June 2015 Gnatcatcher (Vol XLVII, No. 3). Download the PDF or read it at Issuu. You'll find stories about a six-year project to preserve open space and to recognize a historic agricultural area at Dutch Corner, a field trip through periglacial and proglacial landscapes of central PA, the bluebird trail at Fort Roberdeau County Park, a new book called Welcome to Subirdia, upcoming activities and programs, and more. How well do you know your spring wildflowers? Test your knowledge with a photographic quiz! There's information about our new Golden-winged Warbler t-shirt, our exhibition at the Pennsylvania Association of Environmental Educators Conference, and a proposed change in our bylaws. Find out who our National Audubon Society "veterans" are. View art and photos by JVAS' talented members.

It's worth pointing out that all the articles in this issue were contributed by JVAS members—this is information you won't get anywhere else. Interested in adding your voice? Contact Laura Jackson, mljackson2@embarqmail.com or 814-652-9268. We're always looking for new content about nature in central Pennsylvania.

Thanks once again to Alan and Terri Swann for putting the issue together. Read back issues of the Gnatcatcher at our website.

The March-April 2015 Gnatcatcher has just been published to the web. Highlights include descriptions of upcoming programs, field trips, and the banquet; an article on how to inculcate a life-long appreciation of raptors in kids; two book reviews; a report on the 2014 Christmas Bird Count; and the President's message.

The March-April 2015 Gnatcatcher has just been published to the web. Thanks to editors Alan and Terri Swann and content-wrangler Laura Jackson for all their work. There are three downloads this month: the issue itself and two supplements:

March-April 2015 Gnatcatcher
Golden-winged Warbler Weekend agenda and registration
JVAS Membership Reminder

Alternatively, here's the issue in an online reader, via Issuu.com:

Highlights of the issue include descriptions of upcoming programs, field trips, and the banquet; an article on how to inculcate a life-long appreciation of raptors in kids; two book reviews; a report on the 2014 Christmas Bird Count; and the President's message. Think spring! Trout lilies and warblers will be here before you know it.

The January-February 2015 Gnatcatcher (Vol XLVII, No. 1) has just been published to the web

The January-February 2015 Gnatcatcher (Vol XLVII, No. 1) has just been published to the web. You can download the PDF or read it via Issuu.com.

Subscribers to the print edition should be getting it in their mailboxes in a few days, and if you've signed up for the electronic edition (thank you!), look for an email containing the PDF link.

Highlights of this issue include news about an exciting event upcoming in April, the Golden-winged Warbler Weekend; a review of Berndt Heinrich's book Winter World; Golden Eagle migration reports from Jacks and Stone Mountains; news about a research team in Honduras that JVAS Vice-President Mark Bonta is involved with, and their success in radio-tagging a rare species of bellbird; and descriptions of JVAS winter and spring field trips and programs.

Thanks to Alan and Terri Swann for all their work on putting the issue out, Charlie Hoyer for assistance with mailing, and JVAS President Laura Jackson for helping to round up articles and other content.

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We’d like to recognize Terri and Alan Swann as the new editors of The Gnatcatcher. This issue introduces a couple of exciting new features, in addition to the usual mix of conservation and club news.

Download the PDF

We’d like to recognize Terri and Alan Swann as the new editors of The Gnatcatcher. They are JVAS members who have graciously donated their time and talents to produce a top quality newsletter. We really appreciate their efforts!

This issue introduces a couple of exciting new features, in addition to the usual mix of conservation and club news. Laura Jackson, JVAS President, is encouraging members to submit book reviews, original poetry, and nature articles for future issues of the newsletter. Please send your submissions to Laura at mljackson2@embarqmail.com.

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Edward Henry Wehner engravaing of the albatross from Rime of the Ancient MarinerWhat???? It's true, we are spending thousands of dollars each year to print and mail The Gnatcatcher. It has become a significant financial burden for JVAS, just as the dead albatross became a burden to the sailor in Coleridge's poem, The Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

If you currently receive the print edition as a chapter-only or a National Audubon member, we need your help so we can keep The Gnatcatcher.

Email me, Laura Jackson, at mljackson2@embarqmail.com and just state that you will accept the digital version of The Gnatcatcher. When each issue comes out, we'll simply email you the download link.

Your email will be a wonderful conservation donation that won't cost you a dime and it will let us keep The Gnatcatcher!

There are a number of advantages with the digital version:

  • The photos will be in color.
  • You will get The Gnatcatcher sooner.
  • You will feel good that you are helping to preserve the financial stability of JVAS.

We pledge to keep your email address confidential. We will not share it with other organizations or companies.

The Sept/Oct issue of the Gnatcatcher is out, including a schedule of the fall programs and field trips. But now we need a new editor.

front page of GnatcatcherThe September/October issue of JVAS' newsletter the Gnatcatcher includes an original nature essay by Marcia Bonta as well as a full explanation for why everyone who attends our September program meeting will receive a roll of toilet paper. You can read it on Issuu or download the PDF from our online Gnatcatcher archive.

The issue includes a full schedule of programs and field trips through December, which are also now here on the website. (The web descriptions link to the field trip locations on Google maps, may may be of use in finding some of the more obscure places.)

UPDATE: We have new editors: Terri and Alan Swann. Thanks to everyone who expressed interest.

Finally, we desperately need a new volunteer to edit the Gnatcatcher. Our previous editor, Ruby Becker, has had to step back due to other commitments, and her predecessor Charlie Hoyer was able to take over for the Sept/Oct issue (thanks, Charlie!) but now we do need a new editor. If you have decent copy-editing and organizational skills and are handy with word-processing software, we'd love to hear from you. Both Ruby and Charlie are perfectionists with intimidatingly good design skills, but we'd be satisfied with a much more basic approach, as long as the content is good and the issues are ready in time. The newsletter is published 4 - 6 times a year. The editor does not have to provide content, as members will provide articles and information for each issue. Anyone interested should email JVAS President Laura Jackson: mljackson2 [at] embarqmail.com for more details.

The latest issue of the JVAS newsletter, the Gnatcatcher, is out and will be on its way to members' mailboxes shortly. In the meantime, you can download and read the PDF version in full color.

Gnatcatcher 2014 March-AprilThe latest issue of the JVAS newsletter, the Gnatcatcher, is out and will be on its way to members' mailboxes shortly. In the meantime, you can download and read the PDF version in full color. This is especially useful for a full appreciation of the feature story on outdoor painting by JVAS member Sam Dietz. Also included is a full description of, and sign-up information for, our spring banquet, with a program by Trish Miller on Golden Eagle Migration, plus some exciting news about a sizable addition to State Gamelands 147 in Blair County. Check it out!

The January-February 2014 issue of the JVAS newsletter, the Gnatcatcher, is now out [PDF]. Members should be getting the paper edition in their mailboxes today or tomorrow.

Speaking of which, it's time to renew your membership in JVAS. If you're not already a member, you can print out the form in the PDF version of the newsletter. This year, for the first time, we are offering the option to not receive the paper version, and just read the Gnatcatcher online. While this is undoubtedly a somewhat more environmentally friendly choice, we do understand why some will prefer to read it the old-fashioned way. And if you have a physical bulletin board, you may want to tack up the Spring 2014 field trips and programs brochure [PDF].

Speaking of which, it's interesting to note that there is now no single, canonical source for information about JVAS events. The brochure includes all of the monthly program meetings and those field trips that are planned well in advance, but there are often fuller descriptions here on the website — not to mention embedded Google maps. And many more impromptu outings are only advertised on the JVAS Facebook page, so we encourage people to like our page on Facebook if they want to keep abreast of absolutely everything we're doing.

At any rate, the latest issue of the Gnatcatcher includes articles on the snowy owl irruption, Fort Roberdeau County Park in winter, and the importance of early successional forests. Check it out.