Fall Bird Walk #1 2012

Went out to check for migrating birds this morning with a few students.  Did not see a lot, but will hope to see more in the coming weeks.  Had a great look at a juvenile female Cooper’s Hawk (below).  Also below, is the bird list.

Large flocks of common grackles, red-winged blackbirds, European starlings and brown-headed cowbirds moving through.  Also saw large groups of American Robins.

Gray Catbird, Carolina Wren, Black-capped Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, Red-eyed Vireo*, Eastern Phoebe, Downy Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Northern Flicker,  Eastern Wood Peewee*, Acadian Flycatcher*, Chimney Swifts, Yellow-billed Cuckoo*, Black-throated Green Warbler*, American Crow, Northern Cardinal, House sparrows and House Wren*. 

* Potential Migrants Heading South


Mammalogy Class at Hawk Mountain

Went to Hawk Mountain on Saturday to do some rodent trapping.  Had no captures.  This has been a very low year for rodent captures.  However, the students did a great job following protocol and they helped conduct a clean-up at one of the trap sites.  We were also able to catch a ‘Birds of Prey’ show before we left.  Here are some great pictures below of a Great-Horned Owl, Red-Tailed Hawk and an American Kestrel by Jenny Garten.




Visit to Kellys Run

So I went out to Kellys run to look over some new land the Lancaster Conservancy had purchased.  Nice site.  Drs. John Wallace and Chris Hardy will be working on conducting a biological inventory of the area.  I have agreed to tag along to survey for mammals, birds and herps.  This will be a great Service Learning project for my Mammalogy, Ornithology and Conservation Biology Class.

Ready to do some birdwatching
Nice view of the Susquehanna River

This blog is dedicated to the students and faculty at Millersville University that are involved in Ecology and Conservation activities.

This blog is updated and edited by me, Dr. Aaron Haines.


Releasing a Ring-necked Pheasant with a Satellite Collar


I am an Assistant Professor of Conservation Biology at Millersville University.   My professional research interests involve working with students to identify more effective approaches to implement on the ground conservation strategies to benefit species of conservation concern.  Conservation strategies may include the use of spatial models to identify priority areas in need of protection or management, habitat restoration projects that benefit multiple wildlife species, and identifying ways to mitigate of poaching activity.


Back at Hawk Mountain

Second day at Hawk Mountain to help with rodent trapping.  Learned that the goal on this long term project is to correlate small mammal diversity and abundance with acorn harvest and parasite loads.  Interesting work.

Eastern Chipmunk with ear tag




Visiting American Toad




One last look before release




Visit to Hawk Mountain

Hawk Mountain

Had a great trip to Hawk Mountain today.  Met with Shealyn Marino.  Shealyn works with Wilkes University as a biological technician.  Shealyn has been working on a long-term small mammal trapping research project.  Below are some of the animals we captured today.  What a great place to take the Mammology class.


White-footed Mouse
Short-tailed Shrew






Eastern Chipmunk
Wood Frog






Conservation Happenings at Millersville University

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