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Council of Trustees Approves Honorary Doctorate for Scott Weidensaul

Scott Weidensaul Photo by Amiran WhiteMarch 2, 2017

KUTZTOWN, Pa. - The Kutztown University Council of Trustees approved the awarding of an honorary doctorate degree today to Scott Weidensaul, which will be presented at the institution's 2017 Spring Commencement on May 13. 

Weidensaul is a Pennsylvania-based naturalist and author. He was a finalist for the 2000 Pulitzer Prize in general nonfiction for his book "Living on the Wind: Across the Hemisphere with Migratory Birds."

Weidensaul, who attended KU, began his writing career in 1978 with a weekly natural history column in the Pottsville Republican.  He became a full-time reporter for the newspaper, a position he held until 1988 when he left to become a freelance writer. 

Weidensaul has written more than two dozen books.  His latest book is the "Peterson Reference Guide to Owls of North America and the Caribbean," which was published in 2015.Weidensaul's writing has appeared in dozens of publications, including Audubon (for which he is contributing editor), Bird Watcher's Digest and National Wildlife, among many others.  He lectures widely on conservation and nature, and directs the ornithological programs for National Audubon's famed Hog Island Center on the coast of Maine.

Weidensaul is also an active field researcher whose work focuses on bird migration.  He is a co-director of Project Owlnet, a collaborative effort among nearly 125 banding and research stations across North America studying owl migration.  He has directed a major effort to study the movements of northern saw-whet owls, one of the smallest and least-understood raptors in North America. 

Weidensaul co-founded Project SNOWstorm, which uses cutting-edge tracking technology to study snowy owls, and is a founder of the Critical Connections project, which is tracking the migration of birds that breed on National Park lands in Alaska.  He is also part of a continental effort to understand the rapid evolution, by several species of western hummingbirds, of a new migratory route and wintering range in the East.

Weidensaul is a long-time board member at nearby Hawk Mountain in Kempton, Pa.

Photo Credit:  Amiran White