An abundance of vast, remote forests make the Appalachian Mountains in Fayette, Westmoreland and surrounding counties home to a wide array of wildlife. Whitetail deer, black bears, coyotes and a number of other bird and mammal species thrive in its dense acreage.
Perched high in the trees, or over a carcass, another rarely-seen feathered creature returns to its winter home in the ridges — the golden eagle.
“People don’t know they’re here mainly because they don’t see them,” said Trish Miller, Ph.D, a wildlife biologist with West Virginia University’s Division of Forestry & Natural Resources.
“They tend to stick to forest areas or ridges, often out of site,” she said.
The large birds of prey are about the same size as a bald eagle,…