Overview and Activities

Quick Look

Next Bird Walk / Field Trip: 8 am Saturday, 18th May, Cedar Woods Farm near OxfordCancelled due to weather forecast

Next Meeting: Monday 20th May, Australia: Diverse, Beautiful, Deadly!


Unless indicated otherwise, all SMAS Programs are held at the Adams County Agricultural Resource Center, 670 Old Harrisburg Road, Gettysburg, PA at 7:30 pm (refreshments at 7 pm). A room number for the SMAS meeting will be posted on the front lobby entry inner door.

Bonnie Portzline (profile - courtesy of The Gettysburg Times) is happy to give her presentation ‘Birds with a Gettysburg address’ to interested parties. The presentation is based on her wonderful photographs of local birds.

Bird Arrivals and Departures

Spring migrants are starting to appear. If you want to hear what Society members are observing join the email discussion. You can join at any time. If you are interested contact Mike Bertram at 717-809-3911.

Local Bird Sightings in 2023

The high point of the year was the recently created beaver pond next to Devil's Den in Gettysburg NMP. The first sighting of a Lesser Bittern in Adams County was at the pond, as was the first breeding record of a Virginia Rail. Other notable sightings in the county were of a Golden Eagle, Orange-crowned Warbler, and Connecticut Warbler.

In the grasslands IBA we had the first records of an Eurasian Collared Dove and a Northern Saw-whet Owl.

The only notable sighting in the South Mountain IBA was a Herring Gull, the previous record was from 2016.

Meetings and other Activities

Saturday, May 18 (8:00) - Cedar Woods Farm on Plum Run Road, near New Oxford; Meet at 8 AM. Someone will be standing along the road to direct you to the grassy parking location. Hiking boots are recommended and insect/tick repellent is suggested. The address is 141 Plum Run Road, New Oxford.Cancelled due to weather forecast

Meeting, Monday, May 20th Larry and Fran Armstrong from the York Audubon Society

Australia: Diverse, Beautiful, Deadly!

A look at the ecology, geology, flora, and fauna of Australia from Sydney in the east to Perth in the west with a stop at Uluru in between. From Darwin in the north (105°) to Tasmania (32° with snow) in the south with a stop at Kangaroo Island in between. From deserts to tropical rainforests and from mountains to coastal beaches, there is something for everyone.

Saturday, May 25 (7:00 start) - Oakside Park, Biglerville. The park is on the right side of route 794 a mile outside the town. Leader: Mike Bertram. Call 717-309-8911 if you have any questions.

Saturday, June 1 (8:00) - Devil's Den, Gettysburg NMP; More information will follow.

Meeting, Monday, June 17th Dr. Ryan Kerney, Associate Professor of Biology, Gettysburg College

Diversity in Amphibian Development - Growing up in a Changing World

Dr. Kerney will discuss his research on the development of salamanders and frogs. His presentation will cover his work with common species in the local area and also take us to other parts of the globe. Most of all, Dr. Kerney hopes to leave the group with a greater knowledge, understanding, and appreciation of these fascinating organisms..

Annual Picnic, August - details to be added.

Saturday, September 21 Slyder Farm Loop at Gettysburg NMP. More information will follow.

Saturday, September 28 South Middleton Park. More information will follow.

The South Mountain Audubon Society aims are to conserve and restore natural ecosystems, focusing on birds, other wildlife, and their habitats for the benefit of humanity and the earth's biological diversity focusing on Adams County, PA.

The Society works towards those aims with meetings, birding trips, and conservation activities.

There are 2 Important Bird Areas locally:

Click here to join National Audubon and the South Mountain Audubon Society. Please select U17 as the Chapter code from the drop down menu on the form.

If you only want to join the South Mountain Audubon Society only then sign up at the next event you attend. The annual membership is $15.

The Society can be contacted in the following ways:

email: the2nomads@gmail.com

Tel.: 717-809-3911

Mail: SMAS, P.O. Box 3671, Gettysburg, PA 17325.

Educational Initiatives

South Mountain Audubon sponsors educational efforts on natural history in the local schools. This year it financed the purchase of books by the Bermudian Middle School.

Bermudian not found

Bermudian not found

Field Trips

FIELD TRIPS - Field trips will be planned on an annual basis and a tentative list will be sent in late December to those on our email list. Details for day trips will be announced in the monthly email blasts, and details for overnight trips will be announced a few months in advance. Also, information can be found on this website. Each monthly email will list a contact person and a meeting place and time for the upcoming events. If you are not on our email list, you can contact Mike Bertram at the2nomads@gmail.com or call 717-809-3911 (please leave a voicemail) if you have questions or need other details. Field trip cancellations will be announced by email as soon as possible and also on this website.

Bird Walk

On Thursday, the 30th March, SMAS undertook a bird walk along the Taneytown Road, Gettysburg NMP. 46 species were observed.

Hanover Watershed

On the 14th of April South Mountain Audubon birded at Hanover Watershed WMA. 39 species were observed.

Red-shouldered Hawk image not found

Red-shouldered Hawk

Hermit Thrush image not found

Hermit Thrush

Photos by Evan Vaeth

Hashawha Environmental Center, Carroll County, MD

On Saturday, 27th April, a group of SMAS members visited the Hashawha Environemental Center in Maryland. 40 species were observed.

Canada Geese image not found

Canada Geese family

Eastern Bluebird image not found

Eastern Bluebird Dad feeding youngster

Photos by Evan Vaeth

Battlefield Bed and Breakfast

On the 8th May SMAS visited Battlefield Bed and Breakfast on Emmitsburg Road, Gettysburg, and walk around the grounds, seeing 51 species.

Catbird3 image not found
Gray Catbird

Photo by Linette Mansberger

International Migratory Birds Day

On Saturday, the 11th May, which was International Migratory Bird Day, SMAS took its annual walk around the Spangler's Spring area of Gettysburg NMP. An amazing 74 species were observed.

ScarletTanager3 image not found
Scarlet Tanager catching insect

YBC6 image not found
Yellow-billed Cuckoo
Notice the insect in its beak

Photos by Linette Mansberger