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The Brooks Bird Club, a national organization headquartered in Wheeling, was named to honor A. B. Brooks, the longtime naturalist at Wheeling’s Oglebay Park. The club was formed in 1932 by John W. Handlan and a group of likeminded friends. It has published The Redstart, a quarterly journal, since 1933. There is a local chapter in Charleston, with additional clubs in the Parkersburg area, Pocahontas County, and southeastern West Virginia.

The interests of the Brooks Bird Club extend beyond birds to a range of nature subjects. Each June, forays are held at locations in West Virginia where members and students can undertake intensive field studies. Classes and field work are led by club members knowledgeable in various subjects, including birds, fungi, butterflies, geology, wildflowers, trees, grasses, and herptiles.

In the late summer and early fall, club members run the Allegheny Front Migration Observatory, a bird-banding station in Grant County that has been operating since 1958. Over the years the Brooks Bird Club has published a series of notable books, including the Birding Guide to West Virginia by James Bullard, Birds of the Greater Kanawha Valley by Charles Handley Sr., and The West Virginia Breeding Bird Atlas by Albert R. Buckelew Jr. and George A. Hall.

This Article was written by Scott Shalaway

Last Revised on October 17, 2023

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Shalaway, Scott "Brooks Bird Club." e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia. 17 October 2023. Web. 12 July 2024.


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