Scott WeidensaulUpdates19 Comments

Back in December, when the magnitude of the winter snowy owl irruption was becoming clear and we conceived the outlines of Project SNOWstorm, we set a pretty audacious goal — to tag more than 20 snowy owls this winter with GPS/GSM transmitters. Given that we had no funding and about a week’s planning, it may have seemed more foolhardy than … Read More

Number 20!

Scott WeidensaulUpdates6 Comments

To all the new readers who learned about Project SNOWstorm on NPR yesterday, welcome. We’re glad to have you, even if we were a little worried that the flood of traffic after the broadcast might crash the website. We reached a milestone of a different kind Tuesday evening, when I tagged our 20th snowy owl of the winter. When the … Read More

Two New Faces

Scott WeidensaulUpdates4 Comments

At the start of Project SNOWstorm, we set an incredibly ambitious goal — to tag at least 20 snowy owls with GPS/GSM transmitters this winter. With the addition of two more owls in the past few days, we’re almost there. On March 6, Gene Jacobs tagged an immature female near Marshfield, Wisconsin, about 40 miles northwest of our nearest snowy … Read More

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Scott WeidensaulUpdates25 Comments

I apologize for the lack of updates the past week. It’s been an incredibly busy one, with a few unexpected wrenches and some great news balancing out each other. This will be a long update. The biggest news is that we completed our Indiegogo campaign this week at $36,663 — 183 percent of our original goal. We’re still gobsmacked by … Read More

New supporters

Scott WeidensaulUpdates2 Comments

We’re grateful to several new partners that have joined the SNOWstorm effort recently. The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, through its Wild Resources Conservation Program, is sponsoring a transmitter on an owl in Pennsylvania — the fourth (and likely final) unit in that state. And a collaboration between Black Swamp Bird Observatory, the Kirtland Bird Club and Toledo … Read More

An Indie-grace period

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We’ve been counting down the final hours of our Indiegogo campaign, which we launched Jan. 2, and planned to close March 1. But Indiegogo (which featured Project SNOWstorm earlier this week in its newsletter) has pointed out that our 60-day campaign is actually only 58 days — and has extended our run two days, now ending on March 3. That … Read More


Scott WeidensaulUpdates2 Comments

  We hope you’re enjoying the latest map updates, which were posted last night. We’ll have another batch of updates on Saturday night, but I wanted to give you a sneak peek at one owl that hadn’t checked in during the last cycle: Millcreek. This immature male was banded Jan. 19 at the Erie airport, and for the first several … Read More

Snowy owl myths

Scott WeidensaulUpdates2 Comments

This new video from the Weather Channel must set a new record for cramming the most snowy owl myths and mistakes into less than two minutes. It’s hard to know where to start, but here are two doozies. Far from mostly being skinny and starving, as the video claims, the vast majority of the owls that came south in this winter’s … Read More

Final days for Indiegogo

Scott WeidensaulUpdates2 Comments

There are just five days left in the Indiegogo crowd-funding campaign we launched Jan. 2, and which has been a phenomenal success. We remain stunned and humbled by the incredible support that the birding and conservation community has shown for Project SNOWstorm. Hundreds of individuals and dozens of organizations have made it possible for us to do groundbreaking research on … Read More

Feb. 23 update

Scott WeidensaulUpdates16 Comments

The past week was a busy one for us. Among other things, Dave Brinker and I spent a couple of days on Assateague Island in Maryland, hoping to catch a new female snowy for a transmitter. But while the bird we were targeting gave us a good run, the owl we ended up catching was a diminutive male, by far … Read More