Recent Sightings

Sightings From September 2012

September 28, 2012

Partially Leucistic Rose-breasted Grosbeak

Partially Leucistic Rose-breasted Grosbeak

This rose-breasted grosbeak with white patches in the plumamge was seen at the feeder window. An albinistic bird is completely white, while a leucistic bird is one with normal coloring but overall pale plummage or one with plummage that has white patches, such as this sighting. Interesting!

September 26, 2012

Black Bear along Hawk Mountain Road

Black Bear along Hawk Mountain Road

This small black bear crossed Hawk Mountain Road about 4:30 pm, then played among the leaves near the roadside. Black bears are the smallest and most common of the three bear species found in North America and the only species found in Pennsylvania.

September 22, 2012

Rattlesnake

Rattlesnake

Visitor Mike Reese reported seeing this rattlesnake about 6:30pm as his group was returning from the North Lookout. The snake crawled across the trail 20 yards or so before the shortcut.  It never coiled up, but did rattle when getting too close to it. He said it seemed sluggish, like it was trying to find a place in the rocks to hide and get warm. 

In Pennsylvania, a snakebite from a rattlesnake is rare, and in fact, has never occurred at Hawk Mountain. The snake is generally secretive and docile and normally chooses to move away, hide, or issue a warning in order to avoid a confrontation with an intruder. most sightings at Hawk Mountain are of rattlesnakes en route to the den, basking in the sun, or lying in wait for its next meal. 

Rattlesnakes emerge from their six-month hybernation during April or May, and sightings peak during July and August. The snakes are sit and wait predators, and can be found stationed along rodent runways to ambush mice, voles and other small mammals.

September 19, 2012

The picture says it all

The picture says it all

This is a practice carving for our landscaping at the Common Room, the soon-to-be-completely renovated and expanded headquarters for education programs at Hawk Mountain, the "School in the Clouds." Photo by Todd Bauman

September 16, 2012

Baltimore Oriole at Bald Overlook

Baltimore Oriole at Bald Overlook

Bill Moses caught this Baltimore Oriole perched at Bald Overlook, the lookout to the right as you ascend the stone staircase on your way to the North Lookout. This is a great overlook if you want to be near North but prefer fewer people.

September 12, 2012

Mourning Cloak at North Lookout

Mourning Cloak at North Lookout

Trusty photographer Bill Moses captured this great view of a mourning cloak butterfly as it rested on a rock at the North Lookout

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