The snowy owls aren't the only avians of interest this winter. Horn and red grebes are leaving the frozen lakes and flying inland in search of open water.
John Fedak, president of the Pennsylvania Society of Ornithology, said the grebes get confused by reflective surfaces inland, such as ice and snow and occasionally land away from water. Their legs and feet are too far back to allow walking on land, making them helpless unless they can swim.
If a grebe is spotted on the ground, there are a number of options. Fedak said the birds will make fierce noises when approached, but if they can be put into a box and transported to water, they will be fine.
A snowy owl is seen flying low to the ground
He noted that the birds should not be rubbed down, as that can remove protective oils from their feathers.
Found birds can also be reported to the Pennsylvania Game Commission,; Scott Stoleson at the U.S. Forest Service's Forestry Sciences Lab in Irvine at 563-1040; Fedak at 723-6903 ext. 1322; or the Tamarack Wildlife Rehabilitation and Education Center at 814-763-2574.