Roan Mountain Professional Review and Guide
"The Roan Highlands sit on the border of North Carolina and Tennessee and form the highest of the Unaka Mountains at 6,286 feet. Roan Mountain has several striking features, including the world’s largest grassy bald complex, which stretches for miles from Carver’s Gap to Big Yellow Mountain. The natural rhododendron gardens, or heath balds, covering over 600 acres are the most extensive in the country. The 800 acres of spruce fir forest and additional diversity of habitats yield a high diversity of breeding, migrating, and wintering bird species.
Habitats: Grass balds, heath balds, spruce fir forest, rhododendron gardens, mixed hardwoods-conifers, cove hardwoods, northern hardwoods. Key birds: Summer: Broad-winged Hawk; Alder, Willow, and Least Flycatcher; Veery; Magnolia, Canada, Chestnut-sided, Goldenwinged, Black-throated Blue, Black-throated Green, Hooded, Kentucky, and Worm-eating Warbler; Ovenbird; Scarlet Tanager; Vesper Sparrow; Rose-breasted Grosbeak. Year-round: Northern Saw-whet Owl; Red-breasted Nuthatch; Brown Creeper; Black-capped Chickadee; Red Crossbill."