Back in 1997, Myrna Wood suggested to Terry Sprague, David and Yvette Bree, and Joanne Dewey, that, together, they start a PEC Field Naturalists club. They also discussed starting a birding festival in May. Terry and Myrna wrote pamphlets and mailed them to Ontario Nature groups (previously, the Federation of Ontario Naturalists), and even to some groups in New York State.
Reaching out to Quebec was also a priority. A birder had picked up the list of clubs in QC, and a translator in Bloomfield provided a French version of the pamphlet, with bird names Myrna took from a French bird guide at Sandbanks. Fortunately, Jeanette Arsenault took it to Ottawa and acquired the birds’ Quebecois names.
Terry and Myrna held a public meeting at the Picton Town Hall to announce the idea and ninety people attended! PECFN was born and the Birding Festival was initiated. The rest is, as they say, history!
PECFN continues to advocate for protection of the County’s natural environment.
Past successes include:
- Founders and co-sponsors of the annual Prince Edward County Birding Festival
- Initiated the Prince Edward Point Important Bird and Biodiversity Area (now the South Shore IBA)
- Lobbied against the use of the Dombind pollutant on Prince Edward County roads
- Started the Prince Edward Point Bird Observatory, with other organizations
- Contributed $3,000 toward the purchase of the Miller Family Nature Reserve
- Awarded the 2012 Conservation Nature Award from Ontario Nature
- Made presentation to the consultants writing the Official Plan Review draft, recommending that the Review specifically protect the South Shore as a Core area of conservation; also recommended stronger protection for woodlands and wetlands
- Spearheaded the Ostrander Point Tribunal against industrial turbines in the centre of an important bird migration area.
Our current executive comprises the following. We welcome new volunteers!
- Amy Bodman: President
- Sandra Dowds: Newsletter Editor, Communications
- Helen Fearman: Member-at-Large
- Sheena Kennedy: Treasurer
- Sheila Kuja: Meeting Leader, BioBlitz Coordinator
- Gerry Jenkison: Vice President, Recording Secretary, Publicity, Website Coordinator
- Paula Peel: Research Librarian, Advocacy
- Susan Warrack: Membership Secretary, PEPtBO Liaison
- Myrna Wood: Ontario Nature Representative, Advocacy
You can download PECFN’s by-laws here.