Here are some of my favorite photos from this past school year! Some involve animals and others involve students, but I think it's fair to assess that all of these are wildlife in some capacity!

These are my top 10 favorite photos from the year in no particular order:


This morning's unseasonably warm day made for the birdiest morning of 2017! Winter birding is generally slow on the Nature Trail at BSES, but today's conditions broke the streak and produced an absolutely spectacular!

I hadn't even made it out of the parking lot when I observed Eastern Bluebirds perched in a tree on the lot's perimeter. I even heard them singing their springtime song that they use to attract a mate, and upon my arrival, it seemed the male wa...


The American birding community was in a frenzy recently when a mega-rarity showed up right here in Pennsylvania! The bird is a Black-backed Oriole, a species so rare to the United States that it's not listed in any of the field guides in my classroom! This species is endemic to central Mexico, meaning it is only found in that region of the world. You can see through their eBird species map where they predominately occur. It's mind-boggling that th...


Cold conditions provided a frosty backdrop for this mornings walk! With yesterday's snowfall and day off, the trail was snow covered and icy, but that didn't seem to impact the birds! Birds were very vocal and could be heard from the parking lot singing on the trail before I even arrived. Once at the trailhead, I observed lots of Carolina Chickadee and Tufted Titmouse activity in the treetops. Also, there were steady streams of mixed flocks of blackbirds ov...


This year's Nature Exploration for 3rd, 4th, and 5th grade students was another smashing success! Last year's Nature Exploration brought a snow-covered experience for the students, but this year's conditions were mild and welcoming!

We began in the classroom discussing possible bird species we would find and practicing how to hold and use binoculars. Once we were all up to speed, we rushed out to the trail to make the most of our afternoon.

Wildlife highlight...


Mild winds and cold temperatures made for a very dry morning on the Nature Trail. Upon my arrival, bird activity was quiet: too quiet. I wandered on my usual walk down the main trail but was met with only flyover birds: American Crows, American Robins, and Common Grackles. After a few Northern Cardinals chipping to announce their presence, I decided to mix up my morning walk!

I walked from the trailhead to the east side of campus to explore the Francis Harve...


 With 100 people in attendance, the Trailblazers Owl Celebration was the biggest event we've ever had!!! At the event, families were treated to a live owl presentation from the Elmwood Park Zoo in addition a talk on birding on the Nature Trail at BSES! For many, I think the highlight was the appearance of Snow White, the Elmwood Park Zoo's Snowy Owl! For those who missed it, check out some photos from last night's event below.

Special thank you to Mr. Piasec...


This morning’s walk tallied fourteen species of birds! Birds were very active today with lots of Canada Geese coming in to land on our ball fields. As the day goes on, I’m willing to bet more geese will arrive, too! We have had counts of approximately 100 Canada Geese throughout the week on nearly a daily basis feeding on the ball fields. Songbirds were also active this morning! White-throated Sparrows were singing their springtime song, and Carolina Chicka...


Part two of my MLK weekend of birding picked back up on Monday with a visit to my native Chester County to one of my surprisingly favorite spots - Southeastern Chester County Refuse Authority in West Grove, PA! This location, known affectionately as SECCRA, is a landfill that is one of the best spots in the county to look for gulls! I have been going to SECCRA for years to search through large groups of gulls in order to find rarities, and the best time to...


With an extra day off from school this weekend, I made some big birding plans to pick up some rarities that I hadn't seen this year in addition to trying to find something new. By Monday evening, I would say this weekend was a great success!

I began late Saturday morning with a return to John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge in Philadelphia. The second Philadelphia county record of Black-headed Gull was still being seen there, even after a short absence when t...

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