06-25-13 Bird Field Note

Block title

06-25-13 Bird Field Note

June 25, 2013

Eric Rasmussen, Raptor View Research Institute, and the Avian Science Center share observations on osprey transmitters, banding efforts, and a bear encounter.

Image icon Download (177.02 KB)

This Cooper’s hawk dropped a young cottontail. It returned for the partially consumed prey when I left.

The common poorwill blends with the surrounding earth. In the evening, they seek warmth from gravel roads.

A fawn lays motionless. This strategy helps protect them from predators. As I approach, this dusky grouse also remains still. The bird’s repose isn’t a defensive mechanism. It suffered an attack.

The golden eagle nest in Davis creek is unoccupied. A support branch may have fallen, causing the nest to slump. Hopefully, further investigation will provide answers.

I surprise a black bear sow with cubs as I round a corner in Davis creek. A cub scurries up a tree, and a second one follows moments later. Mother crashes off through brush, but does not go far. The cubs come down after the sow gives low barks.

Black bear cub.

Black bear cub climbing.

Only the wings remain on this tiger swallowtail.

s butterfly looks plain from above. An elaborate pattern is revealed underneath.

A young elk in velvet grazes on ninebark.

Eight coyote pups lounge at their den site.

This pup stands sentinel for the group Osprey Trapping- Raptor View Research Institute (RVRI) On 18 June RVRI captured an adult female osprey at the North Center Pivot nest. She is the fifth adult captured since last breeding season as part of RVRI’s osprey tracking project. The female that occupied the nest last year presumably died 6 September, 2012. All four adult osprey with nests on MPG now have transmitters.

Before attaching the trap, RVRI biologists carefully place the live eggs in an incubator and replace them with decoy eggs.

When the female attempts to land on the nest the trap catches her.

RVRI outfits the female with a unique color band and a GPS satellite transmitter. A blood sample tests for heavy metal concentrations. The osprey flew towards the Bitterroot River after processing, and stayed there for several hours.

Avian Science Center Songbird Banding and Geolocator Retrieval

Megan and Sharon recaptured this female grey catbird outfitted with a geolocator in 2012. The geolocator and harness fit well and the female did not seem limited by the device. Upon inspection, researchers saw signs of recent egg laying. Sharon later located her nest and four eggs. Sharon also deployed another geolocator on a new female.

Previous Field Note

06-18-13 Field Note