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By: Adrian Binns

On February 16, PA Young Birders ( guided the annual Great Backyard Bird Count at Heinz Refuge, with wonderful results. Brendan was thrilled to add Rusty Blackbird and Horned Grebe to his life list. Julia’s second look at Saw-whet Owl was just as magical as the first. Bo spotted the first Brown Creeper. Sam and Sophie were amazed at the size of the Bald Eagle nest (with an eagle inside it!). Lucas followed the Red-shouldered Hawk circling over our heads. The boys from Wolf Pack 44 watched shovelers dabbling with pintail ducks. A collective “WOW!” rose up from everyone when a Great-blue Heron sailed overhead and landed on a nearby tree limb. The final report listed 40 species and 348 birds. The enthusiastic energy, impressive engagement, and amazing experience with these young birders are captured only in vivid photos and special memories. Thanks to PA Young Birders, volunteers, and Heinz Refuge for inspiring and connecting kids to birds with this wonderful citizen-science activity! The full photo album is featured on the PA Young Birder’s Facebook page



U.S. Representative Curt Weldon, at podium, presents copy of signed legislation allocating nearly $2.5 million to the Heinz refuge to Greg Mallon, executor for the estate of Antonio Cusano, who willed the money to the Refuge. Friends of Heinz Refuge is a non-profit organization that supports the mission of the refuge and is funded in part by donations from people like you. Are you interested in becoming a member of the Friends of Heinz Refuge? Join today!


Heinz Refuge celebrates its 40th anniversary with a collection of articles, stories, and images from the Refuge archives. We hope you enjoy this trip down memory lane featuring 40 years of collaborative efforts to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats. Read more reflections in our archive. If you have a memory or story to share, please email it to We’ll be gathering as many as we can for a special retrospect.

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