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

Catching Up

Scott WeidensaulUpdates4 Comments

Sorry for the silence the past two weeks — as we’ve said before, all of us at Project SNOWstorm do this in our spare time, and this is a busy season for wildlife folks. I just got back from a 10-day writing and research trip to China focusing on shorebirds, while webmaster Drew Weber was with the Cornell Lab’s Sapsuckers … Read More

Stampede

Scott WeidensaulUpdates2 Comments

The movement north is in full swing, and by last week we only had a handful of owls still on their winter territories. Everyone else was on the move, or (maybe) already out of cell range. The movements have been especially strong in the East, where spring has finally started to make itself felt — but migration timing is only … Read More

Stops and Starts

Scott WeidensaulUpdates4 Comments

The past week was a wild one for weather across much of the terrain our tagged owls are inhabiting. Some places went from summerlike tee-shirt weather one day to whiteout snow squalls the next, while blizzards and ice storms raked still other regions. So it’s not surprising that some owls that had been moving north hung back –but others pushed … Read More

More Heading North

Scott WeidensaulUpdates4 Comments

Last week, we saw the first signs of northbound migration, but over the weekend we had several owls making major movements north in New England, Quebec and the Midwest. Arlington, who began moving a couple weeks ago, actually stopped and reversed course a bit in recent days in Pine County, Minnesota, not far from the “snout” of Lake Superior, and … Read More

Let the Race Begin

Scott WeidensaulUpdates7 Comments

Arlington isn’t waiting for spring. This juvenile male is making serious tracks to the north — the first of this winter’s class of tagged owls to show more than just some late-winter wanderlust. In just the past week he’s moved more than 120 miles (200 km) from south of Eu Claire, Wisconsin, northwest into Kanabec County, Minnesota — and more … Read More

Across the Bay and Off the Ice

Scott WeidensaulUpdates5 Comments

It’s been quite a week since the last update. The low point, obviously, was confirming Hereford’s death, but there’s also been a lot of very cool news from the other owls, and that’s what we’ll focus on this time. We won’t hit every owl (like Stella, whose great photo our friend Dan Lafortune got on Amherst Island recently) but check … Read More

Shaking Things Up

Scott WeidensaulUpdates3 Comments

The days are getting longer, and right on schedule, we’re seeing some restlessness start to appear among this winter’s cohort of owls. But there’s a lot of ground to cover this week, including the second “bomb cyclone” of the winter on the Northeast coast, an ice-queen owl on the Great Lakes, and a turbine-dodging bird on the prairies. Here are … Read More

Weekly Update

Scott WeidensaulUpdates1 Comment

It’s been quite a week, with new owls in five states — but there’s lots happening with the rest of this winter’s cadre, too. Here’s a roundup of where we stand with all 24 of the snowy owls we’re currently tracking. It’s a lot of ground — geographically and metaphorically — to cover. The most intriguing movements this week were … Read More