Buckeye’s Bonanza

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One of the most exciting developments this winter was the unexpected reappearance on Feb. 22 of Buckeye, our first Ohio snowy owl, tagged last winter after being relocated from the Detroit airport. Her transmitter quickly uploaded a new configuration designed to maximize battery power and speed the download of her stored data — and that has worked spectacularly well. In … Read More

Spring is in the Air

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If you live in the Northeast, you didn’t need much of a hint that spring is coming early this year — it was T-shirt weather across much of the region this week. Here in Pennsylvania, where I live, sheets of migrant tundra swans, Canada and snow geese were papering the skies the past few mornings, and spring peepers and wood … Read More

Buckeye’s Back!

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Here in the northern hemisphere, the days are getting noticeably longer — and that’s having an effect on birds of all sorts, including snowy owls. The past week or two we’ve started seeing some significant movement — not migration, and not necessarily northbound, but a sign of seasonal restlessness setting in. And with predictions for dramatically warmer weather across much … Read More

Baltimore: The Rest of the Story

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Of all the owls we’ve tagged since Project SNOWstorm started, perhaps the most exciting has been Baltimore. He’s now wrapping up his third winter on our radar, and his second with a transmitter — and he’s produced what is arguably the most detailed record ever of the movements of an individual snowy owl. As a juvenile on his first migration, … Read More

Owls, West to East and in Between

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It’s been an exciting week with our two new owls, Hardscrabble and Casco, but of course we still have a lot going on with our other tagged snowies — so let’s get to the update. Starting out West, Dakota continues to shift between her northern and southern hunting areas in the northeastern corner of Stutsman County, North Dakota, this fascinating … Read More

Ice Owls

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If there’s been a theme that was missing so far this winter — one that had been nearly constant in previous years — it’s been ice. Snowy owls love ice. For example, researchers with Laval University in Quebec (including our SNOWstorm colleague Jean-François Therrien from Hawk Mountain in Pennsylvania) have documented how some adult snowies leave the breeding grounds in … Read More

All Roads Lead to Amherst

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We’ve been talking all winter about how Amherst Island in Ontario has a reputation as an internationally famous owl mecca — and the fact that three of our tagged snowies have been wintering there only confirmed that distinction. Well, make it four. This week Tibbetts, who had been wandering around the New York side of the St. Lawrence near Chaumont … Read More

The Three Amigos, and Other Owls

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It’s always a little thrill when the cell phone vibrates and the text messages start coming in: “CTT Data Update: Unit #27236551 (Salisbury 4Y Male) has checked in.” And then another, and another, until we have the weekly report from our far-flung tribe. The three amigos (well, two amigos and an amiga) were back together on Amherst Island this past … Read More

Weekend Update: Jan. 30

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It was a pretty quiet week for our tagged owls — though one of them was courting danger, briefly back at an airport we’d really hoped he would avoid. We’ll start with Flanders, who remained on the north shore of Lake Ontario, having ambled back southeast of Napanee, Ontario, to the farmland around Hawley, just a few kilometers from the lakeshore. After … Read More

Three’s a Crowd?

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Most winters, Amherst Island is one of the best places to find snowy owls, and that’s certainly the case this year — especially if you’re looking for a snowy owl with a Project SNOWstorm transmitter. Two of our owls, Flanders and Baltimore, have been on Amherst for the past month or so. And although Flanders moved off the island last … Read More