Important Bird Areas

St. Anthony's Wilderness - SGL 211

Pennsylvania

This is a large, mountainous and forested area 5 miles north of Harrisburg. Most of the area is state game land, but a smaller portion is a municipal watershed and reservoir, along with some private property. There are several clearings where food plots have been created for wildlife. The terrain is steep and rugged over most of the area. The valley floors of Stony Creek and Clark's Creek have numerous vernal/autumnal ponds where salamanders and wood frogs spawn. Unusual/rare species found here include Eastern Woodrat, Woodland Jumping Mouse, American Holly, Naked-fruit Rush, Running Strawberry-bush, and Painted Trillium. The name "St. Anthony's Wilderness" has been used for the area since 1770. It is still largely wilderness unbroken by habitation or roads.

{link:For conservation plan, click here|http://pa.audubon.org/IBA_Consplans/IBA43.pdf}

{link:For fact sheet, click here|http://pa.audubon.org/Sites/Site43.pdf}

Ornithological Summary

The size and integrity of this forest at the southeast edge of the Ridge and Valley Province make it valuable habitat for interior forest species. Openings in the forest provide breeding habitat for additional species such as Golden-winged, Prairie and Blue-winged warblers, Yellow-breasted Chat and Prothonotary Warbler.

Conservation Issues

There is a threat of increased clear-cutting by the Pennsylvania Game Commission for timber sales. Acid mine drainage from old coal mines is also a threat. An abandoned railrode right-of-way is sometimes open to snowmobiling.

Conservation measures include a forest management plan for DeHart Reservoir, clearings and plantings of herbaceous vegetation for food/cover, and nest boxes for bluebirds (which have been highly successful). Within the state forest area there are also plantings for wildlife and wildlife management. The value of St. Anthony's Wilderness is enhanced by several bordering land tracts. They include Lykens Reservoir and watershed and State Game Lands 229.