Powdermill Nature Reserve

Education Programs & Exhibitions

Sunday Lecture Series

Creek Join us in the Parker Room of the nature center on the second Sunday of every month at 1 p.m. for a seasonally relevant nature talk. Weather permitting, each lecture will be followed by a brief foray into the field for an interpretive hike.

Plant and Animal Invaders of the Northeast
June 14
Pennsylvania is host to many non-native and invasive plants, insects and animals. Learn how these invaders disrupt our native ecosystem, and how to identify and responsibly slow their spread.

Summer Woody Plant ID
July 12
A leafy continuation of the wintertime hit “Bare Tree ID”! Even in the summertime, identifying trees can be challenging. We’ll offer some helpful tips and tricks to help you become a more confident observer.

Children's Story Time

Children's Story Time is on hiatus during the summer and will return in September.

NEW! Evening Expeditions

Join us weekday evenings at Powdermill for seasonally relevant interpretive hikes and activities.

All evening interpretive activities are weather dependent; watch our Facebook page (www.facebook.com/PowdermillNatureReserve) for updates, cancellations, or rain dates. There is no fee for attendance. Registration is not required.

For questions regarding academic enrichment or other interpretive programming contact reserve Naturalist Larry Long at 724.593.6105 or LongL@carnegiemnh.org 

The Timberdoodle and its Elaborate Courtship Display
April 15: 7:30 p.m. The American Woodcock is probably North America’s most peculiar shorebird—both in looks and habit. Join us on a foray to locate the Timberdoodle at its Powdermill courting grounds.

Amphibian Hike and Salamander Meander
April 22: 7:45 p.m.
May 20: 8:15 p.m.
Spring is here and it means that woodland pools will be a raucous cacophony of singing frogs, trilling toads, and squirming salamanders.

Amateur Astronomy
May 27: 8:30 p.m.
A full moon means sky-watching at Powdermill.

Evening Entomologists
June 10: 8:45 p.m.
An unseen world of night flying insects exists. From splendid silk moths to seldom-seen spiders. We’ll deploy special equipment to lure and capture the insects of the night.

Fireflies Front and Center
July 8: 9 p.m.
The Laurel Highlands are a firefly hotspot. Join us at Powdermill to see the spectacular light show of summer.

Research News

The Powdermill Avian Research Center has joined efforts with The National Aviary, The American Bird Conservancy, Chatham University, the Audubon Society of Western Pennsylvania, the Green Building Alliance of Pittsburgh, and The Wildlife Center at the Animal Rescue League to form BirdSafe Pittsburgh, a bird collisions monitoring program in the city of Pittsburgh. The monitoring program will provide us with baseline bird-window collision data for the area, allow us to test our scientific protocols before expanding the research area, raise public awareness of bird-glass collisions, and rescue birds injured from collisions (http://www.wqed.org/birdblog/2014/04/04/help-make-pittsburgh-birdsafe/).

Schools & Groups

Powdermill offers a variety of interdisciplinary, hands-on, environmental education activities at the Nature Center. Enhance your environment and ecology curriculum in our natural setting. In addition to our standard activities, we can also design field trips to meet your curriculum needs. For information about school field trips, call 724.593.6105 or email LongL@carnegiemnh.org.

Summer Camps

The Powdermill 2015 Summer Camp programs are now available for registration. Click here to see the available offerings.

Bird Banding

The museum's bird banding station at Powdermill Nature Reserve has been in operation for more than 50 years, and, after calling ahead, you can observe the trained staff as they identify, measure, weigh, and band the more than 200 bird species that have stopped for a rest during their long migration. Banding is seasonal and weather dependent, but is usually in operation on weekends. To schedule a visit, call 724.593.7521. To learn more about our bird migration research, visit http://www.powdermillarc.org.

Educational Improvement Tax Credit

Support from area businesses through the Pennsylvania Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) program supports all aspects of our programming. Click here to learn more about how your business can help.

Adopt A Bird Band 

hummingbird The Adopt A Bird Band program invites nature lovers of all ages to become personally involved in supporting the vital biodiversity and conservation research at the core of Carnegie Museum of Natural History's mission. Adoptions make great gifts for bird lovers, budding naturalists, and conservation enthusiasts, or anyone who wants to celebrate in a unique and special way. Click here to explore the adoption website! 


Powdermill programs are supported by the Mudge Environmental Education Program and the Martha Edwards Lazear Foundation.