Headwaters Master Naturalists December 2016 Newsletter
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Pesticide Use and Safety for Naturalists, VMN Webinar

Tuesday, December 13, 12PM. Online. About the legitimate role of pesticides in invasive species control, agricultural production, and our urban environment. Presented by Tim McCoy, Extension Associate, Virginia Tech Pesticide Safety Education Program. More about this and the link to join the webinar HERE.

117th Aububon Christmas Bird Count
Saturday, December 17, all day.
Rockingham and Augusta Counties. Contacts:
Rockingham Bird Club, Bill Benish:
Augusta Bird Club, Allen Larner:
More about the Christmas Bird Count HERE.

Rockingham Bird Club Meeting/Field Trip
Thursday, January 7, 7PM
. McKinney Science Center, Bridgewater College. Bridgewater College Biology Professor Robyn Puffenbarger will make the college's bird skin collection available for close examination. HMN's who are not members of the Rockingham Bird Club (RBC) are welcome to attend. Please RSVP to Adrie Voors,

HMN Annual Membership Meeting
Saturday, January 21, 11AM-3PM.
Arey Hall, Bridgewater Municipal Building, 201 Green St., Bridgewater. More about this below.
Science Night Saturday

On November 12, members of the Headwaters Chapter Cohort V Basic Training class and other chapter members assisted Bridgewater College science clubs and faculty with a first annual Science Night Saturday “… for children ages four through 12 and their families to explore the world of science.”

Photos and more about this from Adrie, Allen Baker, Stephanie Gardner and Peggy Plass HERE.

Rachel Kreiger, Cohort V, works the reptile room in photo at right.
HMNs at the Saw-Whet Owl Banding Station 2016

Retired professors Clair Mellinger and Charles (Zig) Ziegenfus have been running a Northern Saw-whet Owl banding station at the Highland Retreat Center near Bergton, VA, for 15 years. Weather permitting, they set up most nights throughout the month of November.

November 6 proved to be a stellar evening for the station with the collection of over 20 owls. Fortunately Headwaters Chapter members were there! See photos from the evening by Kim McCray, Ann Murray and Kathy Whitten HERE.

Photo above by Kim McCray, Cohort V, shows Kathy Whitten, Cohort V, taking notes while Clair examines a bird and Zig weighs one.
Tree ID Trip

On Sunday, November 13, Virginia Department of Forestry Senior Area Forester Patti Nylander hosted a tree identification trip for 13 members of this year’s Headwaters Master Naturalist basic training class.

Photos and more about this from Peggy Plass HERE.

Mary Gatling-Finks, Cohort V, studies a tree in photo at right.
HMN Annual Member Meeting January 21
Mark Your Calendars!

Program Committee Chair Judy Tammi has arranged for the Headwaters Chapter's Annual Membership Meeting to be held on Saturday, January 21, 2017, from 11AM to 3PM at Arey Hall in the Bridgewater Municipal Building.

Plans are to:
  • start with a potluck lunch followed by
  • a short business meeting before a
  • nature-oriented presentation being arranged by the Continuing Education Committee and finally some
  • social time.
  • Plus a book sale! ... Recycle your naturalist-related books through fellow chapter members.
Snow date is Saturday, January 28. Judy will be looking for volunteers to help set up tables and chairs before we start and clean up before we leave. Arey Hall is located at 201 Green St., Bridgewater. Green St. is immediately across from the fire house on Rt. 42.
Seeking HMN members to join the Board

Interested in serving on the Headwaters Master Naturalist board of directors?  Several positions are open and the nominating committee is searching for candidates to serve on the Board as officers or as chairpersons on various committees. The election of board members is on a staggered schedule with the following positions being up for election or re-election in 2017:

- Vice President
- Treasurer
- Historian/Parliamentarian
- Chair of the Basic Training Committee
- Chair of Newsletter and Website Committee

Some people currently serving in these positions have agreed to run again but this is an open call for other Master Naturalists to be nominated to serve on the board. Each person voted into these positions at the January 21, 2017, membership meeting will serve for two years. The election for the other 6 board positions will be held at the membership meeting in 2018.

Information regarding the board positions and duties can be found at

Please contact Chip Brown [], Gerald Hopkins [] or Kelly Rourke [] if you want more information or are interested in being nominated.

- Chip Brown, Cohort II
Your volunteer and CE hours are needed!

Your recorded hours are valuable to our chapter! Please take the time to record your hours in the Virginia Master Naturalist Volunteer Management System (VMN VMS).

Logging our hours spent on volunteer service projects, chapter administration, and continuing education is essential for showing our sponsors what we are doing, for insurance purposes, and for determining individual certification. If for no other reason, make this effort for our hard working Annual Report Committee which will soon be convening to compile this all-important document from your submitted numbers as required of the state program by early January. A robust Annual Report proves our worth to our sponsoring agencies, ensuring continued program funding.

Do you have enough hours for re/certification? You need a minimum of 40 hours of volunteer service and 8 hours of continuing education each calendar year to maintain certification. To find out how many hours you have accumulated this year:
  • log into VMN VMS
  • click on "View Your Hours" in the upper left-hand corner of the screen
  • fill in the "Start Date" and "End Date" boxes at the top with something like "1/1/16" and "12/31/16"
  • click "Submit" ... then find your totals at the bottom of the page.
Members Website

The HMN getting-to-know-our-members, password-protected website has been up for almost two years now. With a growing chapter, it is a handy way to put faces to names and provide an opportunity to share our backgrounds.

This project is dependent on members submitting information about themselves ... such as background and interests and motivations or whatever they wish to share. This can be done via the online form on the site or by direct email messaging to Adrie. Members need only click on the image on our VMN VMS home page to get started.

To date,16 of the 72 of us have submitted the form. It can be updated by resubmitting it. If you haven't yet, please give it a go and let us learn more about you!
CWD Testing

Each year the VA Department of Game and Inland Fisheries tests hundreds of deer carcasses for chronic wasting disease including all the deer shot by hunters on the first two Saturdays of the general firearms season. Find out about the testing procedure from HMN Adrie Voors who answered a call for volunteers to staff the testing stations HERE.

At right, VDGIF volunteers Gordon Judd and Dan Lovelace harvest the retropharyngeal lymph nodes from a deer head at the Fort Valley Country Store check station on November 26.
Submissions please!

The HMN newsletter and website need your input! Please send articles, photos or ideas to Adrie. Newsletter item deadlines are the last day of the month for the following month's issue.

Wind your way HERE for a Naturalist-related events calendar for our area. Contact Adrie if you know of events to add to the calendar.
Copyright © 2016 Headwaters Master Naturalists, All rights reserved.

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