Website traffic was up over 8% for 2021-22, averaging over 2500 hits per month (30,469 for the twelve-month period) versus 2300 hits per month last year. Part of the increase in activity may be attributed to the Spring Migration Festival leveraging Nature London’s event registration facility. The Cardinal averaged over 270 downloads from the website per flight, up from 250 last year.

Seventy-six events were added to the website’s Events Calendar. This included:

  • 51 hikes. (Wow!)
  • 13 virtual meetings. (7 regular, 5 Birding Wings, and 1 special.)
  • 12 Spring Migrations Festival outings.

The following improvements were made to the Events Calendar procedures:

  • A method to automatically send an email to all registrants when an event is canceled was implemented and documented.
  • Waiting lists were added to events. Should a spot open due to a cancelation, the next person on the waiting list will be registered automatically and receive a confirmation email.
  •  In response to the Spring Birding Festival opening registrations to the public and Nature London possibly doing the same in the future, two-step authentication was added to the registration process to validate email accounts.
  • The “Job Aid on Registering and Unregistering for Events” was revamped. It includes details on how to be added to a waiting list, how to cancel a reservation, two-step registrations, etc.
  • A Nature London Indoor/Virtual Meeting Request Form was created for the Indoor, Birding Wing and Nature in the City meeting coordinators. It captures in a standardized format all the information required to add a meeting to the Events Calendar.
  • References to the Government of Ontario self-assessment was added to events.
  • The hike waiver was updated.
  • A new option was added to the hike sign-up form dealing with being photographed.
  • The Hike Leader form was updated to capture the hike leader’s sign-off on the “Waiver of Nature London Waiver of Claims and Assumptions of Risk” and subsection 7. The hike leaders no longer need to sign up for their own hikes.

In preparation for the 2022-2023 membership year the following enhancements were made to the website’s Events Calendar procedures:

  • Registrations used to be open for hikes as soon as they were added to the calendar, sometimes resulting in registrations over six months before a hike. Registrations now open two weeks before a hike when members should have a better understanding of their availability. It is hoped that this will reduce the number of no-shows.
  • Automated email reminders are sent to registrants for hikes three days in advance. It includes instructions on how to unregister to free a spot for another member as well as hike protocol reminders.
  • Automated email reminders are sent to registrants for indoor meetings one day in advance.
  • A mechanism to handle hybrid meetings was created to accommodate registrations for attending either in-person or virtually.

There were the usual day-to-day activities (Breaking News, Feature Member Images, Columbia store invitations, annual bird reports, The Cardinal, Eco-Grants, AGM materials, membership password labels, plant sale, etc.) and ad hoc requests/discussions (solicitations for volunteers, a potential auction, PayPal history, the appropriateness of personal announcements, missing emails, copyright requirements, photo contest, evolving pandemic hike registrant limits, Covid announcements, etc.).

The Nature London Video Coordinator role was approved by the Board and became official early in 2022. Kathleen Holland volunteered to take on this role.

Once again, we would like thank Sylvia White who is providing the Nature London web hosting services and taking on the Postmaster (mail coordinator) role.

Chris Baldock