The short-eared owl is on PA's endangered species list, but has been seen at the Refuge during its migration.
The John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge is considered one of the top “bird” destinations in the East. So why not take one of their guided bird-watching tours or just bring a camera and make friends with some of our avian tourists!  

More than 300 species use the Refuge as a migratory stopover... and 80+ species have been recorded nesting here!
The John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge protects a variety of habitats for birds in the highly urbanized landscape of Greater Philadelphia. It has also been designated as an Important Bird Area by the National Audubon Society.

The periodic drawing down of the impoundment and the presence of tidal mud flats provide some of the best stopover habitat for migrating shorebirds in Pennsylvania. In addition, many types of waterfowl, wading birds, waterbirds, and landbirds utilize the impoundment. The area serves as a wintering ground for over 20 species of waterfowl with 1,100 to 1,400 individuals observed per day between September and March.


State endangered species such as the least bittern are known to breed at the refuge. Other Pennsylvania endangered species that have been observed during migration, include: the yellow-crowned night-heron, common tern, black tern, king rail, short-eared owl and loggerhead shrike.

Bald eagles, a former federally listed endangered species that has recovered and been de-listed, have historically utilized the refuge for hunting and roosting. The first known bald eagle nest on the refuge was built in 2009 with the first two refuge eaglets successfully hatched in 2010. The pair has returned to breed on the refuge every year since.

Pictured left the Hairy Woodpecker and on the right is the Red-shouldered Hawk.

Check out their e-Bird Tracker at the link below!  See how many and what types of birds were sighted each day. On April 26th alone, more than 60 species of birds were sighted there, including the Hairy Woodpecker and the Red-shouldered Hawk pictured above!
Heinz Refuge Daily Bird List

For those interested in guided tours of all kinds, visit Refuge Calendar of Events & Guided Tours

LOCATION: ON THE RIVERSIDE
John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge at Tinicum
8601 Lindbergh Blvd., Philadelphia, PA 19153
215-365-3118 office
215-365-2846 fax
John Heinz National Wildlife Refuge Website