Programs & Events
Autumn Lecture Series
After a Saturday of hawkwatching, stay for an entertaining and informative talk by Hawk Mountain staff or other wildlife experts. All lectures are FREE and held Saturdays at 5 pm in the Visitor Center gallery.
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Pennsylvania Bald Eagles: 30 Years of Restoration
Patti Barber, Biologist
Endangered Species Biologist
Pennsylvania Game Commission
Saturday, September 28 at 5 pm, Visitor Center
Join us for a FREE screening of "Pennsylvania Bald Eagles: Celebrating 30 Years of Restoration," a new wildlife documentary premiering at Hawk Mountain on Saturday, September 28 in the Sanctuary Visitor Center. The 22-minute film is a new release by the Pennsylvania Game Commission, and will be the first installment in the Sanctuary’s annual autumn lecture series. Immediately following will be a question-and-answer period with Endangered Species Biologist Patti Barber of the Pennsylvania Game Commission.
"Pennsylvania Bald Eagles: Celebrating 30 Years of Restoration" is designed for people of all ages, and helps to share the story of the early days of eagle persecution, and the 7-year restoration project launched in 1983 by the Game Commission. At that time, biologists could document just three bald eagle nests and six adults in all of Pennsylvania, and each nest was located along the Ohio border in the northwestern corner of the state.
Thirty years later, the big bird is back and now spread across Pennsylvania, with 271 nests statewide. In fact, two adults frequent the Hawk Mountain lookout, and the pair are known to accompany migrating eagles along the ridge before they turn back to soar across the valley.
“The bald eagle’s recovery in Pennsylvania has been nothing short of remarkable, and this film does an incredible job of telling that story” says Pennsylvania Game Commission Executive Director Carl Roe. “It celebrates a victory for wildlife conservation and will leave residents feeling proud to be Pennsylvanians.”
“Pennsylvania Bald Eagles, Celebrating 30 Years of Restoration” was filmed and edited by Game Commission videographers Hal Korber and Tracy Graziano, and their work was recently entered in the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival. After making a tour around the state, the film will be made available to the public online.
Roe said the game commission staff and board has responded warmly, and describes the film as a moving portrayal of the bald eagle’s comeback.
“People have an indescribable connection with bald eagles, and to see the bald eagle’s tale of triumph laid out in this manner simply is a thing of beauty,” Roe said.
Passionately Curious: Striated Caracaras on the Falkland Islands
Keith Bildstein, Ph.D., Sarkis Acopian Director of Conservation Science
Saturday, October 5
Dr. Bildstein has been studying scavenging raptors since 2003, including fieldwork on turkey vultures in the Falkland Islands. Here, his research expanded to include the island’s other scavenging raptor, the Striated Caracara, a globally-threatened island-endemic bird of prey. Dr. Bildstein will share background on the adaptations of this charismatic raptor, why the birds are so easy to trap and tag, the experience of spending more than a month on the barren Falklands without access to phones or email, and why these amazing birds face a conservation crisis.
Pennsylvania Barn Owls: A grassland raptor in decline
Daniel Mummert, Wildlife Diversity Biologist,
Saturday, October 19 at 5 pm, Visitor Center
Learn more about the Pennsylvania
Game Commission and their statewide conservation initiative to learn more about
the Barn Owl and how landowners can help to slow its decline. Dan’s talk will
cover the basics of Barn Owl biology, the conservation issues that affect their
population, his work banding the nestlings, the basics of barn owl nest boxes,
and the new partnership with Hawk Mountain and its Farmland Raptor Project.
Satellite tracking Ospreys: Migration, Ecology, and Conservation
October 12 at 5 pm, Visitor Center
Rob Bierregaard, Ph.D., Research Associate in
Academy of Natural Sciences, Drexel University
Rob Bierregaard has been tagging Ospreys in the eastern
United States since 2000, and shares with us his work using satellite
transmitters on 37 juvenile and 23 adult Ospreys. His studies, the first to
ever collect a significant body of data on juvenile migration, have led to
surprising discoveries about the dispersal and migration of naïve Ospreys as
they leave their natal territories and explore the world around them. Rob
shares a look inside the nest and along the migratory path, and explains how
the ever-more sophisticated satellite technology is enabling
scientists to document unprecedented detail on the hunting behavior of adult
males feeding their families.