Western Great Lakes Owl Monitoring

Greetings Owl Monitoring Volunteers,

Many of you have been inquiring about the status of the Minnesota Owl Survey for this year, which we’ve been in much discussion about. We have truly appreciated your commitment to this citizen science project! Here’s an update for you about the future of the project in Minnesota.

As many of you are aware, this program has been in limbo since funding for coordination was discontinued in 2014. It was determined a new research effort was needed for surveying rare owl species vs common. We decided to continue to maintain the volunteer coordination side of this project until we could investigate other research options and partners. However, we feel we have learned all that we can, given the resources we have available for this project. We are currently working to get the previous data entered and analyzed, and we are preparing a final summary report for the project through the 2018 season. When completed, we will definitely share this summary with you and other volunteers!

We are asking volunteers that are still interested in participating this year to please do so, but to contribute their findings via eBird.org. Ryan Brady with the Wisconsin DNR mentioned that there are a few owl routes remaining in neighboring Wisconsin (particularly Douglas County). If you are interested in helping with that survey, please visit Wisconsin Owl Survey for those available routes.

We’ve truly appreciated the effort from all and know that the results of the MN portion of the Western Great Lakes Owl Survey have impacted Minnesota’s Breeding Bird Atlas among other things. We hope to move those citizen-science efforts on towards other future bird-related research projects, potentially as soon as late summer or fall this year. Stay tuned for updates on these efforts through our Hawk Ridge e-news (to subscribe – simply send an email with “Subscribe” in the subject line to jlong@hawkridge.org).

Thank you so much again for your participation and we look forward to connecting with you soon!

P.S. We invite you to visit us during the spring at our West Skyline Spring Count and/or attend our Spring Migration Celebration coming up April 26-28!

Annual Reports

Image Credits: Debbie Waters