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Local Researcher Looking For Volunteers

Scott Rashid photo

As fall approaches birds begin their migration south. As you have noticed, most of the bluebirds and hummingbirds have already left the Estes Valley. Well, there is a much lesser known species moving through the valley right now. This species however, moves after dark. Theses little birds are Northern Saw-whet Owls. This adorable little owl moves through the area from late September through the middle of November.

Since 2006, we have been trapping and banding these little owls during the fall. The birds are captured, banded, measured, weighed and released in the hopes of gaining more insight into the species natural history and movements.

In 2006, 2007 and 2008 trapping here in Estes Park, we captured and banded 11 owls each year. In 2009 we trapped in Pinewood Springs and caught 33 owls, and last year, here in town, we caught 43 owls.

I am looking for nature oriented volunteers willing to assist with the setup and takedown of the traps and sound system along with note taking. The project schedule is Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday evenings beginning before dark and continuing for several hours each night. Most evenings you will be awake until midnight or later. The trapping and banding will continue until the second week in November.

If anyone is interested in assisting with the project please contact: Scott Rashid at (970) 577-1794.


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