More Pictures From Hawk Mountain

Here are a few more pictures taken by student Jerika Volckers from our Mammalogy trip to Hawk Mountain on September 29th.  These pictures show Shea Marino (Biologist with Wilkes University) and myself processing rodents and shrews.  Greats Pics Jerika.

Close up of a Short-tailed Shrew
White-footed mouse climbing up my camo sweatshirt

Ear tag on young white-footed mouse





Late September Hawk Mountain Trip

The Millersville University Mammalogy Class helped Hawk Mountain Sanctuary with their rodent trapping efforts.  Multiple White-footed mice, Eastern Chipmunks and shrew species were captured.  Below are some pictures of students in the field and some of the things they saw. 

Mammalogy students looking at a short-tailed shrew
Red-eft stage of a red-spotted newt





Eastern chipmunk fed de-wormer medicine as part of an effort to analyze impacts of parasitic worms on rodent populations






Fall Bird Walk #2 2012

Went out to check for migrating birds this morning.  Had more students show up this week compared to last week.  We also had an increase in the number of potential migrants moving through the area as well.  Had a nice look at an Eastern Phoebe (see below).  Also below, is our complete bird list.  

Eastern Phoebe Photo(


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

Tundra Swan, Gray Catbird, Belted Kingfisher, Carolina Wren, Carolina/Black-capped Chickadee, White-breasted Nuthatch, Blue Jays, Mourning Dove, Yellow-throated Vireo?*, Tufted Titmouse, Red-eyed Vireo*, Eastern Phoebe, Downy Woodpecker, Hairy Woodpecker, Red-bellied Woodpecker, Eastern Wood Peewee*, Yellow-billed Cuckoo*, Black-throated Green Warbler*, Canada Warbler*?, Black & White Warbler*?, Eastern Bluebird, American Crow, Northern Cardinal, House finch and Common yellowthroat*.  

* Potential Migrants Heading South

? Best guess, about 75-95% sure of identification.

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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