Friday, May 22, 2015

Another Way You Can Help Raptors and Wildlife

We have another story to share with you about how you can do small things to help raptors and other wildlife.
 A TRC volunteer was recently called out to assist a recently fledged great horned owl who got stuck in an egressed window well at a house in Minneapolis.  When she arrived, not only did she find the youngster stuck in the well, but both of its parents too!  Apparently, they flew down to bring the youngster food, but once down, could not fly vertically to get out.  The family was trapped.

With heavy gloves and protective gear, the volunteer removed all three owls and transported them  to TRC’s clinic to be checked out.   It was unclear how long they had been in the well and they were all a little dehydrated. After supplying supportive care and re-hydrating them, the entire family was returned to their home site.

We thank the homeowners for calling TRC.  We also want to remind everyone that covering those window wells with lightweight, clear plastic covers will not only keep snow and rain from  your windows, but also ensure that wildlife will not get trapped.  Mice and other rodents might be close to homes in these areas, especially in the cooler spring temperatures.  Owls are important for rodent-control in our shared ecosystem. 

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Peregrine Falcon Chicks Banded in Minneapolis Metro Today

One of the Wells Fargo chicks with bands.

The second Wells Fargo chick after banding.
Peregrine falcon chicks were banded at two sites in the Minneapolis metro area.  Wells Fargo, in Bloomington, had two chicks (both banded as females), and Colonnade, in Golden Valley, had four chicks (one banded female, and three banded as males.)

Two bands are placed on the legs of each chick; one is a federal USFWS band.  The other is a bi-color band, recognized as a project band, and can be read with a scope or binoculars.  Chicks are banded at about 21 days of age (the Wells Fargo chicks are banded a little younger).  The legs are the size they will be as adults, even though the chicks are not their full adult weight.  

The Wells Fargo site has been active since 1997.  Colonnade has been active since 1991.  The female at Wells Fargo, twelve-year-old female b/g 30/E Speedy, hatched at the King plant in Bayport, MN, over-wintered at Colonnade, but was chased off by twelve-year-old female b/g 49/E Loree, a 2003 hatch from the NSP plant in Monticello, MN.

 TRC staff provide leadership, technical advice, and administrative support for the Midwest Peregrine Society, which includes 13 Midwest states and two Canadian provinces.  The history of the Midwest peregrine restoration project, as well as a searchable database for the public to look up individual birds, sites and states, is here. 

B/g 30/E Speedy

Jackie Fallon, of the Midwest Peregrine Society, bands
a Colonnade chick.

Dr. Julia Ponder, TRC's executive director, takes a
blood sample and checks the overall health
of a Colonnade chick.

B/g 49/E Loree

B/g 49/E Loree

The 2015 Colonnade family.


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

The Raptor Center's Spring Raptor Release Newsletter

The Raptor Center's Spring Raptor Release newsletter is now available to download here.  We hope you'll enjoy reading about our continuing commitment to a healthy shared world with raptors.  As always, our popular Tales from the Trauma Center is included, and we have updates on our Education department and other news.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Free Public Workshop on Work in the Galápagos Islands June 3

Dr. Ponder and Galapagos hawk.

The public is invited to a FREE workshop on Wednesday, June 3, 2015, which will give updates and presentations about the ongoing conservation work to address the problem of invasive species in the Galapagos Islands. These informative sessions will be relevant to scientists, graduate students, and anyone interested in the preservation of this unique and incredible World Heritage Site. 

You might remember that The Raptor Center is a partner on this conservation project to prevent extinctions and restore altered ecosystems in the Galápagos Islands by permanently removing damaging introduced rodents from key islands. Already through this work, rodents have been successfully removed from eleven islands in the archipelago and the resulting recovery of multiple endemic species documented.  Dr. Julia Ponder, executive director, and TRC staff focused on the endemic Galápagos hawks.  Dr. Ponder is a featured speaker, presenting on "Invasive vertebrates vs endemics: Who will be voted off the island?"

Information and registration on the website for the event is here

June 3 | 10 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
*lunch served
June 4 | 8 a.m. - noon

1954 Buford Avenue
St. Paul, MN 55108
Parking is available in the Gortner Ramp