Sightings of interest from the past month:

10/30 – Don observed a handful of late season butterflies including an American Lady, Cabbage White, Sachem, Common Buckeye, and about 12 Monarchs.

11/7 – Don observed 2 Brown Creepers, Dark-eyed Junco, Golden-crowned Kinglets, Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, and a Yellow-rumped Warbler. A Beaver was spotted swimming in the lake early in the morning by Josh Rudd.

Beaver (Photo by Josh Rudd)


11/10 – Lance saw Ring-necked Ducks* and Buffleheads* on the lake.

11/14 – Don observed Greater Scaup* (1 male, 3 female) and 3 male Mallards.

11/15 – Lance observed Gadwalls* (1 male, 1 female).

11/16 – Don observed 1 male Gadwall.

11/19 – Don observed Gadwalls (2 male, 3 female), a Pine Siskin, and Yellow-bellied Sapsucker.

11/20 – Don observed 2 Pied-billed Grebes and a Brown Creeper.

11/24 – Lance saw a Double-crested Cormorant.

*First of the season


Lance Jessee


Sightings of interest from the past month:

9/25 – Don saw a Cooper’s Hawk.

10/4 – Lance saw a Cave Salamander and Slimy Salamander in Quarry Cave.

10/9 – Don saw a very friendly Black Rat Snake in Hemlock Hollow on a guided walk.

10/24 – Don observed a Yellow-rumped Warbler.

10/25 – Don observed a hairy Woodpecker and Monarch Butterfly.

10/26 – Don observed Purple Finches, a Ruby-crowned Kinglet, and a Monarch.


Lance Jessee

Sightings of interest from the past month:

8/15 – Lance saw a Snowberry Clearwing moth feeding on the Butterflybush.

8/17 – Lance observed a Monarch butterfly depositing eggs on Common Milkweed in the butterfly garden.

8/21 – Don observed:

Birds: Green Heron, Baltimore Orioles

Butterflies: Harvester*, Monarch, Great Spangled Fritillary, Summer azure

Dragonflies: Swift Setwing, Blue-faced Meadowhawk* (Don’s second park record dragonfly this summer)

8/25 – Lance observed 4 Monarch caterpillars, a Velvet Ant, and Bald-faced Hornets.

9/2 – Jeremy spotted a Black Swallowtail in the butterfly garden.

9/21 – Don observed an American Redstart.

9/22 – Lance saw a Monarch chrysalis on the Nature Center porch.

Monarch chrysalis (Photo by Lance Jessee)


*First of season

Lance Jess

Sightings of interest from the past couple of weeks:

7/25 – Lance saw Blue-winged Wasps and Double-banded Scoliid Wasps.

7/27 – There was a dinoflagellate bloom in the lake (reddish-brown streaks in the water, probably Ceratium species)

7/28 – Don saw a Beaver.

8/8 – Jeremy and Lance saw a Northern Copperhead, the park’s only venomous snake and an uncommon sighting in the park. Although venomous and potentially dangerous due to their proximity to humans, Copperheads are generally shy and quiet snakes, often going unnoticed. Relying on their excellent camouflage, they tend to lie still or slowly slither away when encountered. However, like many snakes, they may strike or vibrate their tails when provoked.

Northern Copperhead (Photo by Lance Jessee)


8/10 – Don and company saw numerous insects during his dragonfly walk including:

Dragonflies: Ruby Meadowhawks, Blue Dashers, Dragonhunter, Slaty Skimmers

Damselflies: Ebony Jewelwings, Violet Dancer, Blue-fronted Dancer, Spreadwings sp.

Butterflies: Carolina Satyrs, Northern Pearly-Eye, Eastern Comma

Ruby Meadowhawk (Photo by Robin Feierabend)


Around the Nature Center, Lance saw a Softshell Turtle, Snapping Turtle, Velvet Ant, Sand Wasp (Bicyrtes sp.), and a Potter Wasp carrying caterpillar prey to feed its larvae.

Sand Wasp (Bicyrtes sp.) (Photo by Lance Jessee)


8/11 – Lance and campers saw Dobsonfly larvae, Fishfly larvae, Mayfly larvae, Stonefly larvae, Caddis fly larvae, Water Pennies, Riffle Beetles and larvae, Leeches, Crayfish, and Salamander larvae during stream macroinvertebrate surveys at camp. A Pandora Sphinx moth and a Dragonhunter carrying Ebony Jewelwing prey were also spotted by campers.


Lance Jessee

Sightings of interest from the past month:

7/10 – Don observed a Black Vulture, Softshell Turtle, Painted Turtle, and Yellow-bellied Slider.

7/11 – Don heard a Robinson’s Cicada*. Lance saw Catalpa Sphinx Moth caterpillars, False Milkweed Bugs, and a Milkweed Leaf Beetle.

Milkweed Leaf Beetle (Photo by Lance Jessee)


7/12 – Don saw a female Clamp-tipped Emerald (dragonfly)*, which is a park record.

7/18 – Lance and campers saw Dragonfly larvae, Stonefly Larvae, Mayfly larvae, Caddisfly larvae, and Scuds in Steele Creek during insect camp as well as a Spotted Lady Beetle and Dragonhunter near the stream. Jeremy saw an American Woodcock* in Hemlock Hollow.

7/19 – Lance and campers saw 2 Monarch butterfly caterpillars and a Disteniid Longhorn Beetle.

7/20 – Lance and campers saw a Wheel Bug, Red Milkweed Longhorn Beetle, Dragonhunters, Queen Snake, Softshell Turtle, and Double-crested Cormorant.

Wheel Bug (Photo by Lance Jessee)


*First of season


Lance Jessee

Sightings of interest from the past week:

6/25 – Don and campers saw an Eastern Garter Snake and Northern Rough-winged Swallow fledglings.

6/26 – Don and campers observed 2 Skunks. Lance photographed a Slender Meadow Katydid and also observed Honey Bees* and June Beetles*.

Slender Meadow Katydid (Photo by Lance Jessee)


6/27 – Don observed a Double-crested Cormorant.

6/28 – Don observed Appalachian Azure caterpillars tended by ants on Black Cohosh flowers, Blackberries, Dewberries, Wineberries, and Black Raspberries in fruit.

6/29 – Lance saw a Hummingbird Clearwing Moth and Blinded Sphinx Moth. Don saw a Scarlet Tanager bathing in the creek, a giant Carp, Dusky Salamander, dead Skunk, Prince Baskettail, and a Spot-winged Glider.

Blinded Sphinx Moth (Photo by Lance Jessee)


7/1 – Don saw a Fawn and Double-crested Cormorant (juvenile).

7/2 – Lance saw a Swift Setwing* and Eastern Musk Turtle.

Eastern Musk Turtle (Photo by Lance Jessee)


7/4 – Lance observed a Slender Flower Longhorn Beetle, Locust Leaf Miner Beetle, Swift Setwing, Eastern Amberwings*, Slaty Skimmers, Widow Skimmers, Blue Dashers, Eastern Pondhawks, and an Eastern Musk Turtle.

7/5 – Don observed a Warbling Vireo, Eastern Wood-Pewee, Yellow-throated Warbler, and Swamp Cicada.

7/6 – Lance observed a Canada Goose chase, catch, and eat a June Beetle. Don observed Silvery Checkerspots, Summer Azures, Sachems, Eastern tiger Swallowtail, Blue-ringed Dancer, Stream Bluet, Dragonhunter, Yellow-billed Cuckoo, and Orchard Oriole.

*First of season


Lance Jessee

Sightings of interest from the past week:

6/11 – Lance saw a Japanese Beetle*.

6/13 – Campers spotted a Fawn Darner* during nature camp.

6/14 – Campers spotted a Ruby Meadowhawk dragonfly*. Lance photographed a Small-eyed Sphinx Moth.

Small-eyed Sphinx Moth (Photo by Lance Jessee)


6/15 – Two Monarch butterfly caterpillars were seen on Swamp Milkweed along the lake edge during nature camp.

Monarch caterpillar (Photo by Lance Jessee)


6/18 – During camp, there were Red Milkweed Beetles (a species of Longhorned Beetle) on Common Milkweed, a Monarch caterpillar, and a Dragonhunter.

Red Milkweed Beetle (Photo by Lance Jessee)


6/19 – Lance and campers saw 6 Cave Salamanders in Quarry Cave.

Cave Salamander (Photo by Lance Jessee)


*First of season

Lance Jessee