Overview and Activities

Quick Look

Next Bird Walk / Field Trip: Saturday, March 16 on Knorr Road just west of Gettysburg on 116.  More details soon!

Next Meeting: Monday 18th March, Bird Carving


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

There are still some late leavers and arrivals for the start of the winter but activity will now be slow until the start of the spring migration. You can join at any time. If you are interested in participating or just want to know what is going on 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

Next Bird Walk / Field Trip: Saturday, March 16 on Knorr Road just west of Gettysburg on 116.  More details soon!

Meeting, Monday, March 18 - Bernice Culver - bird wood carver. Details to follow.

Meeting, Monday, April 15 - Campbell Plowden - executive director of the Center for Amazon Community Ecology based in Camp Hill. Presentation about native communities, forest conservation and artisan families in the Peruvian Amazon.

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. In March it finacnced the purchase of books by the Montessori School.

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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.

Eisenhower Farms

Sixteen people birded at the Eisenhower National Historic Site on the chilly morning of November 11.  Twenty-six bird species were tallied, including a lengthy observation of a Northern Harrier that was hunting over the fields.  We were thrilled to have a family with 3 daughters join our group, and the girls were very enthusiastic and involved. Our "Little Birder in Red" had a pacifier and a pair of binoculars - proving that it's never too early to start a rewarding lifelong hobby! 

Big Spring Walk

On Saturday, the 27th January, SMAS walked down Big Spring run and observed 35 species.

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Bald Eagle

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Red-shouldered Hawk
Photos by Linette Mansberger

Strawberry Hill Nature Preserve

On the 10th of February South Mountain Audubon birded at Strawberry Hill Nature Preserve. 29 species were observed.

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Common Raven nest building

Photo by Evan Vaeth

Battlefield B & B

On Saturday, 24th February, SMAS hiked around the Battlefield Bed & Breakfast property. 30 species were observed.

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Juvenile Bald Eagles

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Swamp Sparrow

Photos by Linette Mansberger