Farewell, Harwood

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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

Plainfield Joins the Flock

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While Coddington continues to recuperate from is close encounter of the manure kind, we have a new owl in central Wisconsin — Plainfield, an adult female relocated from an airport for her safety, and tagged by Gene Jacobs and released on the Buena Vista grasslands, where she’s been ever since. In fact, Plainfield is occupying almost exactly the same territory … Read More

Low on Luck on Amherst

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There’s been a lot going on, and the fates have not always been with us. That’s the way wildlife work goes, sometimes — you take the bad with the good. For example, one of our major goals this winter was to deploy up to five transmitters on snowy owls on Amherst Island, to continue our multi-year look at how the … Read More

Ice-riding Around PEI

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A week or so ago we shared the news that Pickford had come zooming back into range, migrating southeast from James Bay, where she’d been since May, to northern New Brunswick. Well, she kept on moving, and her latest positions — sporadic, because her battery is still recharging from the drain it took to send almost 11,000 GPS points, and … Read More

Pickford Phones Home

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Pickford — a female we tagged last winter as a first-winter immature last season on the Upper Peninsula of Michigan — has been playing hide-and-seek with us for months. The last time we heard from her in the spring was May 29, when she was heading north along the western shore of James Bay. Her transmitter connected with a cell … Read More

Heading for the Line

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I often tell groups to whom I’m speaking about Project SNOWstorm that virtually every one of the owls we’ve tagged has surprised us in some fashion. And that’s certainly the case now, as we watch two owls in the same general region heading in opposite directions. After more than a month and a half near Melfort in central Saskatchewan, Pettibone … Read More

Out on the Prairies

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Some wander, some stay; that’s always the pattern every winter with our snowy owls, and it makes our work interesting. Woodworth, the second-year male tagged earlier this month by Matt Solensky in eastern North Dakota, has been on a bit of a walkabout. On Dec. 14 he began moving north from his capture location near his namesake town in Stutsman … Read More

Woodworth Joins the Flock

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One of our goals this winter is to get more movement data on snowy owls in the Great Plains, to complement the larger data set we have for the Great Lakes and Northeast — which is we’re especially pleased that our colleague Matt Solensky just tagged the first owl of the 2018-19 season in eastern North Dakota. “Woodworth” — named … Read More

Two More Back South

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Two more previously tagged owls are back south, having uploaded more than 12,000 GPS points showing where they’ve been over the past eight months — Wells and Island Beach, who went in dramatically different directions over the summer. Wells is an adult female, originally trapped in 2017 by USDA Wildlife Services at the Portland (Maine) Jetport, tagged by SNOWstorm collaborators … Read More

First Across the Finish Line

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This is the time of the year when we’re on heightened alert for the first signs of snowy owls, both new birds coming south from the Arctic, and the first returning tagged owls from previous winters. As we noted a week or two ago, this year there has been an unusually early surge of snowies, and we’d gotten a brief … Read More