This is a region of rivers systems, and located at its heart is the second most populated city in Pennsylvania. Pittsburgh extends over much of Allegheny County. Downtown Pittsburgh sits at the confluence of three major rivers. Together, the south flowing Allegheny River and the north flowing Monongahela River join to form the Ohio. Bald eagles have begun colonizing this region, but many miles of streams do not yet host a pair of eagles. This region probably has the greatest potential for nesting eagle population growth and has the potential to provide many locations where eagles can be viewed easily.
The rivers and their tributary creeks and streams sculpted the region’s topography. Short steep hills, U-shaped valleys and deeply cut hollows branch out and eventually give way to uplands and broad valleys to the north and east with woodlands, scattered farmland and even grasslands covering reclaimed strip mines.
To the south, the Youghiogheny cuts through the Laurel Highlands. Its tributaries rush and tumble through damp, rhododendron shrouded ravines with a mix of eastern hemlock, oaks, beech and maple. The mountainous terrain yields to rolling farmland.