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Blizzard Raptors – Houtzdale WRS

Alex Lamoreaux|

Red-tailed Hawk - Immature hunting along the road near Curwensville Dam (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Earlier today I ran the Houtzdale Winter Raptor Survey in Clearfield County. This 110 mile route meanders through pockets of grasslands, stripmines, agricultural fields, and forests from Tyrone to Curwensville and then up to Clearfield. When we left State College to drive down there this morning it was sunny and calm. About halfway, in Blair County, we spotted an immature …


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Headed for Canada, but not without a Tufted Duck

Alex Lamoreaux|

One of three Pine Grosbeaks at the Collins Landing rest area - a lifer for most of the birders on our trip! This bird is an immature male because of the orange-red wash on its head and rump. (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

This past weekend, I joined the Pennsylvania Society for Ornithology (PSO) on a four day birding trip through Ontario. This would be the second time I had ever been to Canada, and the first time I had been there for birding! I had been dreaming about this trip for months and it was finally happening – I had a chance …


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Another year of birding underway!

Alex Lamoreaux|

Two of 3 Razorbills we saw at Barnegat Inlet, NJ (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

With the first month of the year officially behind us now, I thought I would take a look the current status of my year list. Beginning a new year is always fun – every single bird is ‘new’, it’s winter, and there are typically a bunch of winter rarities and other good birds around to chase. You never really know what the …


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Winter Raptor Survey – Snow Shoe, PA 2013

Alex Lamoreaux|

This light type immature Rough-legged Hawk was the last raptor we found on our WRS route today. (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

Winter Raptor Surveys are very popular in Pennsylvania, and I am always excited for this time of the year to finally get out and see what raptors and other winter birds are around the northern portion of Centre County, PA. Last year was the first year that I ran a WRS route in Centre County, and we tried to plan …


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State College CBC 2012

Alex Lamoreaux|

Eastern Screech-Owl - photo by Alex Lamoreaux

Sunday was this year’s date for the State College Christmas Bird Count. This was my second year running the Bear Meadows and Rockview Property routes. Last year Drew Weber, Steve Brenner, and I birded the route together but this year it was me and Josh Lefever. My goal for last year was to find 50 species, but we were only …


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Failed chase, waterfowl, and a dark Rough-legged Hawk

Alex Lamoreaux|

A dark type adult Rough-legged Hawk hovering near Taylor Hill Rd. (Photo by Alex Lamoreaux)

My friends and I were bummed that we had missed out on a very chase-able Eurasian Wigeon during the spring and thought we had lost our chase to get that species for our PA state lists. That was until last week, when a male Eurasian Wigeon was reported at Yellow Creek SP, which is about 1.5 hrs from State College. …


Winter Raptor Survey Results for PA – 2012

Alex Lamoreaux|

Greg Grove sent out the following message concerning the results of this past winter’s PA winter raptor surveys (WRS). Greg has allowed me to post this on his behalf – Record coverage and mild weather led to several record high counts this year. Given that hourly rates were not notably (or at all) higher than usual (with one exception) – most …


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10 Reasons to visit the Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey Area right now!

Alex Lamoreaux|

A Prairie Falcon (adult male) having fun along the cliffs below Dedication Point - Photo taken in Idaho by Alex Lamoreaux, 2011

Among raptor fanatics, the Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area is not only a mouthful of words but also a world-famous site for viewing lots of raptors representing lots of species, at close proximity. In 1993, about 485,000 acres of public land along 81 miles of the Snake River in southwestern Idaho, was declared a national conservation area. …


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Winter Raptor Survey – Snow Shoe, PA 2012

Alex Lamoreaux|

In Pennsylvania, the birding is pretty slow this time of the year but raptors can help add some excitement. Winter Raptor Surveys are an excellent way to get out on a cold winter day and do some birding. Drew Weber, two of our friends, and I conducted our own Winter Raptor Survey in the strip-mined areas north of Snow Shoe, …


State College CBC wrap up

Drew Weber|

female light type Rough-legged Hawk

Yesterday was the State College CBC which I have been looking forward to participating in for weeks now. I covered a lot of territory this year, starting at Bear Meadows and Alan Seeger Natural Areas with Alex and Steve. These higher elevation sites have extensive conifer stands so the hope was to find some less common species such as Ruby-crowned …