The Pull of the North

Scott WeidensaulUpdates4 Comments

Breaking, and very unwelcome news: As I was preparing to post this update, we learned that Roc, the adult female tagged by Tom McDonald’s team at the Douglass-Greater Rochester (NY) airport earlier this winter, was found dead along on off-ramp from I-390 close to the airport, the apparent victim of a vehicle collision. We’re grateful to the Monroe County Sheriff’s … Read More

On the Move (Direction, um…Uncertain)

Scott WeidensaulUpdates9 Comments

The past couple of weeks have seen some pulses of late-winter warmth into the Northeast, and along with longer days, it’s definitely having an effect on some of our owls. This is the time of year when we expect breeding-age adults especially to get antsy, and several of them have indeed begun moving in a noticeable way — though in … Read More

One, Two, Three New Owls

Scott WeidensaulUpdates8 Comments

This winter has been dominated mostly by news of our many returning snowies, with only three newly tagged owls, all relocated from the Montréal airport — Aimé, who immediately returned to the airfield and was killed by the back-blast of a taxiing jet, and Nicolet and Odanak, both of whom also returned to the airport but have thus far mostly … Read More

Here, or There?

Scott WeidensaulUpdates7 Comments

To stay, or go: That is the question. Stella, one of our transmittered alumni, was originally tagged four years ago, in January 2018 on Amherst Island on the northeastern edge of Lake Ontario. She was a juvenile then, having hatched the previous summer. When she migrated north that spring, she swung wide to the west, up the western shore of … Read More

Late Yul-tide Greetings

Scott WeidensaulUpdates6 Comments

The last gift of Yuletide came a little late this year for Project SNOWstorm. On Sunday evening, Jan. 9, we were surprised and delighted to see that Yul — an adult female originally captured at the Montréal airport in November 2019, and named for that airport’s international code, YUL — had just made a late return from the North. What’s … Read More

Columbia and Fond du Lac: An Update

Scott WeidensaulUpdates2 Comments

While we’re excited about our two new Québec owls, Nicolet and Odanak, we’re also keeping a close eye on our returnees from past winters, especially two in the upper Midwest, Columbia and Fond du Lac. Columbia, you may recall, returned Nov. 25 and uploaded part of her migration data from last spring, then went dark while her battery recharged. Two … Read More

The Worst News, and Some Good News

Scott WeidensaulUpdates9 Comments

I hate writing this kind of update; even after eight years it doesn’t get any easier to lose an owl, and I’m afraid we lost Aimé, our most recently tagged snowy, on Monday afternoon, Dec. 13. As we noted over the weekend, even though she’d been moved 80 km (50 miles) and across the wide St. Lawrence River, she quickly … Read More

Welcome, Aimé (and an Update from Fond du Lac)

Scott WeidensaulUpdates2 Comments

Our first newly tagged snowy of the 2021-22 season has already demonstrated she’s a stubborn owl. Aimé — an adult female trapped at the Montréal-Trudeau Airport in Québec by Falcon Environmental, and tagged by Dr. Guy Fitzgérald at the University of Montréal, was relocated about 80 km (50 miles) across the St. Lawrence to farmland near the town of Saint-Aimé … Read More

Two More Returnees!

Scott WeidensaulUpdates3 Comments

Snowy owls have been making headlines this past week, as more and more have been appearing in the upper Midwest, around the Great Lakes, throughout the St. Lawrence River valley and down the Northeast coast to Long Island. One showed up last week on the roof of a school in Goochland, Virginia, just west of Richmond, where snowies are extremely … Read More

Attaboy, Otter!

Scott WeidensaulUpdates1 Comment

This time of year, we can see some really dramatic changes — and that certainly has happened within the past week or so. We’ve gone from 15 owls in regular contact to just six, as most of the rest have apparently migrated out of cell range. Perhaps not surprisingly, two of the owls that wintered farthest north — Pettibone in … Read More