This northern saw-whet owl was captured early in the morning of November 2. We attached a small radio transmitter to its back and we're using an airplane to follow its movements as it migrates south through the Bitterroot Valley. In the hours after its release, it travelled approximately 6 miles south and roosted on the Bitterroot River floodplain. The next night, it travelled approximately 17 miles south to State Land near the Tucker Crossing Fishing Access Area. It was detected in this same location for 3 days, though it moved back and forth across the river. On November 5th I was able to hike in and find it roosting in a dense shrub thicket on the floodplain.
Kate graduated from Middlebury College with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and Conservation Biology in 2000. She pursued a M.S. in Forestry at the University of Montana where her thesis focused on the habitat associations of snowshoe hares on U.S. National Forest land in Western Montana. After completing her M.S. degree in 2003, Kate alternated between various field biology jobs in the summer and writing for the U.S. Forest Service in the winter. Her fieldwork included projects on small mammal response to weed invasions, the response of bird communities to bark beetle outbreaks and targeted surveys for species of concern like the black-backed woodpecker and the Northern goshawk. Writing topics ranged from the ecology and management of western larch to the impacts of fuels reduction on riparian areas.
Kate coordinates bird-related research at the MPG Ranch. She is involved in both original research and facilitating the use of the Ranch as a study site for outside researchers. Additionally, Kate is the field trip coordinator and website manager for the Bitterroot Audubon Society. She also enjoys gardening and biking in her spare time.