Winter raptor surveys

Jeff Fleischer

Hi Everyone,

My name is Jeff Fleischer and I am project coordinator for the Winter Raptor Survey Project sponsored by the East Cascades Audubon Society chapter based in Bend, OR.  Our 17th season of survey work, 10th in Idaho, is about to begin and the reason for this message is to offer a chance to participate in this project if you have an interest.   Last winter we ended up with 392 active routes throughout OR, WA, ID, and extreme northern CA covering nearly 25,000 miles of transects each month and surveyed by a cadre of over 300 primary volunteers, it is an extensive citizen science project!  

Following is a list of routes in Idaho that are currently available for ownership, they average between 50-70 miles in length and designed to be completed in one day:

1.  Winchester                              
2.  Nezperce                                
3.  DeSmet - Tensed                    
4.  Churchill - Oakley                    
5.  Rupert North                           
6.  Rupert East - Minidoka.          
7.  Burley SW                                
8.  Burley SE                                 
9.  Paul
10.  Minidoka NW
11.  Heyburn
12.  American Falls SW
13.  American Falls - Rockland
14.  Arbon Valley
15.  Pocatello - Inkom
16.  Inkom - McCammon
17.  Virginia - Downey

We ask our project volunteers to commit to one survey per month during the primary months of December through February, additional opportunities are available in November and March, both optional months with usually a 50 % coverage.  You can select the day that you want to do your surveys based on your own life schedules.  Volunteers should have a good working knowledge of at least the more common raptor species in your area and of course be willing to learn more about this great family of birds :). You should have at least a pair of binoculars and if you have a spotting scope even better but not required.  You should also be comfortable with winter driving conditions, our project has a super driving track record.  

If this sounds like you would be interested in becoming a part of, please get back to me as soon as possible with your route choice, I will be filling them first come first served.  I will provide you with pertinent materials, including a survey protocol, to get you prepped for what you will be doing this winter on these surveys.  For a more detailed account of the project, I prepared a power point presentation that can be found on the ECAS website at:   that will provide a comprehensive history of all aspects of this project.  It is a large program with 227 slides most of which have audio information tracks.  It is chock full of hundreds of wonderful photos of the 31 species of birds of prey that have been found on our surveys to date, check it out :)

Okay, hope to hear from you soon, this is a wonderful way of spending some time in the field during the winter months while helping gather extensive wintering data for these birds. I might add that all of our data is provided to The Peregrine Fund for inclusion in their large international data base of birds of prey in hopes of being used for research by various scholastic and governmental agencies. Thank you,

Jeff Fleischer
Project Coordinator
Winter Raptor Survey Project
East Cascades Audubon Society - Bend, OR

My email address:    raptorrunner97321@...

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