Early May Update

Scott WeidensaulUpdates2 Comments

Things are popping, as spring migration rolls along. Only two of our remaining owls — Pickford, up on Prince Edward Island, and Seneca on the (very rapidly) diminishing ice along the northeast shore of Lake Erie — have been stationary this past week. Wells continued moving north through southern Quebec, and on April 29 was just south of Lac Saint-Jean, … Read More

On the Road

Scott WeidensaulUpdates4 Comments

The season is winding down, and fewer of our 2018-19 owls are still in regular contact. Most of those that remain look as though they’re pushing north as well. Plainfield — who has already made a more than 1,280-mile (2000-km) loop from where she was tagged in Wisconsin, up into southwestern Ontario, then south and west through Minnesota — checked … Read More

A Year in the Life of Chickatawbut

Scott WeidensaulUpdates1 Comment

Snowy owls never fail to surprise us, but we really got a shocker this week when Chickatawbut phoned home — almost exactly a year since the last time we’d heard from this particular female. SNOWstorm co-founder Norman Smith, from Massachusetts Audubon, captured her as a juvenile in March 2017 at Boston’s Logan Airport, tagged her and released her at Salisbury … Read More

Stella!

Scott WeidensaulUpdates4 Comments

First off, an apology — the past couple of weeks have been unusually hectic for members of the SNOWstorm team. Mike Lanzone and Trish Miller were in Israel for the Champions of the Flyway birding competition (which raised money this year for African vulture conservation). Steve Huy and his wife had a baby; I moved from Pennsylvania to New England. … Read More

On the Move

Scott WeidensaulUpdates2 Comments

Regardless of what the weather’s been like in your neck of the woods, our tagged snowy owls know that spring is here — and this past week, a bunch of them started responding to the season. In our last post we discussed some hints of the season, including Hardscrabble’s sudden departure from his traditional winter territory in southern Ontario (and … Read More

Chasing Hardscrabble

Scott WeidensaulUpdates5 Comments

Hardscrabble has been one of our most interesting owls, a male that was at least four years old when he was tagged on Cape Vincent, NY, in February 2016. The past three winters he has returned, quite reliably, to the Ottawa River valley near Arnprior, Ontario. But while his transmitter keeps faithfully sending us regular transmissions, a fault in its … Read More

SOARing Away from Trouble

Scott WeidensaulUpdates6 Comments

From the beginning, one of the goals of Project SNOWstorm has been to find ways to keep snowy owls and airplanes apart, for the safety of both. We’ve worked with airport authorities and federal and state wildlife agencies, helping to trap and relocate snowy owls were possible, and tagging some of those relocated birds to better understand their movements after … Read More

A Sigh of Relief

Scott WeidensaulUpdates1 Comment

In the last update we noted how, in the wake of ferocious winds, insanely high waves and “ice tsunamis” on Lake Ontario, we’d been worried that Otter (who had moved out onto the ice at the lake’s eastern end a week or two earlier) hadn’t checked in. Looks like our fears were unfounded, though, because this adult male moved back … Read More

Finger Lakes First

Scott WeidensaulUpdates10 Comments

Thanks to Tom McDonald’s tenacity, we have a new snowy owl to follow — our first ever in the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York, and the second owl tagged with one of CTT’s new cellular/satellite hybrid transmitters. Tom’s had one of the roughest winters of his 30-plus years in snowy owl research, as we’ve detailed here in the … Read More

Farewell, Harwood

Scott WeidensaulUpdates8 Comments

This was supposed to be a long, chatty update about the status of all our tagged birds, the first in more than a week, with apologies for being behind with blog posts. Instead, we have to start with some somber news: we lost Harwood last week. He’s the Billboard Owl, the second-winter male that’s been hugging the margins of I-29 … Read More