Where it all started (the BIG picture) Project Owlnet
Project Owlnet, literally a network of owl migration monitoring stations, was established to improve the knowledge of Northern Saw-whet Owl (NSWO, Aegolius acadicus) migration in North America. In the beginning, starting with only five banding stations in the east, Project Owlnet encouraged other researchers to monitor the fall movements of the NSWO, and now there are more than 100 migration stations on the map (see below)! Because of these efforts we know that an amazing migration of saw-whets occurs each fall across the nation. Cooperating stations have determined the timing of migration, movement patterns and distances, and documented annual fluctuations in demographics (numbers, age and sex of birds) annually and over time.
Project Owlnet has three primary goals:
- Support expansion of a network of migrant owl banding stations
- Advocate the use of relatively comparable netting protocols
- Improve communication and coordination between owl banding stations in the North America
Fall Monitoring Protocol at the BCCER
|In the very center of this photo you can see a molt limit between the 1st secondary feather (glossier and dark) and the older, browner 1st primary feather.|
Below you can see that some feathers are pinker than others. Just as above, the newer feathers glow brighter pink. All of the NSWO feathers have a pigment called porphyrins. This pigment fades in the older feathers. The bird below is 2 years old, showing two generations of feathers, with the newer, replaced feathers glowing bright pink and the older ones fading near the trailing edge of the feathers.
|This bird had a mass of 90 grams and a long wing chord:|
a female NSWO
|Adios! Released owl photo taken by Mike Fisher|