PEPtBO Hall of Fame
David Hussell (1934-2015)
David Hussell was PEPtBO's Scientific Advisor for many years. He helped found PEPtBO in 1995 and worked with the Observatory to establish its endowment fund. His presence on the Board was greatly valued and we miss his advice, support and encouragement.
(Excerpt from Hawk Mountain Sanctuary Association's tribute to David Hussell, Apr. 28, 2015)
Originally from England, David was always an enthusiastic birder, bird bander, and ornithologist. He helped set up Canada's first bird observatory at Long Point on Lake Erie in 1960, and served as Long Point Bird Observatory's first Executive Director from 1974 to 1982. Here he developed most of the program areas carried on today by Bird Studies Canada, itself a creation of Long Point.
He went on to serve as a research scientist for the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources, but maintained his interest and expertise in bird banding. Through a standardized approach to monitoring, he convinced the ministry’s scientific community that counting and banding migrants was and is a legitimate method of avian population monitoring.
His work led to numerous scientific papers on ornithological subjects ranging from population monitoring through bird behavior and molt sequences, mostly based on his bird banding experiences. He published research papers on a wide variety of species and topics and was still preparing new papers at the time of his death. He also received numerous accolades recognizing his work, including life-time achievement awards from the Society of Canadian Ornithologists, the Hawk Migration Association of North America, and the Linnaean Society of New York, and was a Fellow of the American Ornithologists' Union since 1991.
Although technically David had retired several years ago, he continued to work harder than ever as a retiree. He served as an Emeritus Scientist and consultant to the ministry and volunteered as a technical advisor to many other scientific organizations, continuing to author or co-author scientific papers and mentor the up and coming conservationists he worked alongside. Always curious about how the natural world works, perhaps his crowning achievement is that he inspired similar interests in numerous student volunteers who are now professional biologists.
Eric Machell (1936-2016)
Eric Machell played a key role in the birth, growth, and development of PEPtBO as one of its founders.
In 1995, when Brian Joyce sent out a call for an experienced, licensed bander who would be willing to work with him in setting up a banding station at a very remote location in Prince Edward County, Eric responded. From 1995 to 2000 he spent six or seven weeks every spring at Prince Edward Point setting up and running the station (sometimes single-handedly), training volunteers, collecting and recording data – all in very primitive and less-than-ideal circumstances. Eric was on the Board of Directors (as President, Vice-president and Past President) for many years.
Over the years, Eric was a keen participant in the Baillie Birdathon raising the profile of the event and funds for the observatory. He and his teammates (The Laphroaig Vultures) were unbeatable. We will miss his vision, support and friendship.