The Earl Poole award is presented annually to a person or persons who have made significant contributions to Pennsylvania’s ornithology. This may be in the form of research, volunteer efforts, publications, field work, or any other pursuit that has increased our knowledge and understanding of the birdlife in Pennsylvania.
This year’s recipient is Scott Weidensaul.
Scott has been involved in ornithology since his childhood, and it has pretty much consumed most of his adult life. He is a licensed raptor, songbird, and hummingbird bander and is an active field researcher. At the Ned Smith Center, he has guided and inspired 90+ volunteers in its Northern Saw-whet Owl Migration Program for the past 21 years.
He is a cofounder of Project SNOWstorm, a collaboration of scientists, researchers, and organizations studying the irruptive migration of wintering Snowy Owls in North America. He is also involved in researching wintering hummingbirds in Pennsylvania.
Scott is an author and naturalist and has written over two dozen books, including Living on the Wind, a Pulitzer Prize finalist; Mountains of the Heart; The Peterson Reference Guide to Owls of North America and the Caribbean; and Of a Feather: A Brief History of American Ornithology. He serves on the boards of Hawk Mountain Sanctuary and the Ned Smith Center for Nature and Art.