DOZER is back! (Long-billed Curlew from Idaho)
Remember DOZER, the banded and satellite-tagged Long-billed Curlew from Idaho, who, with his buddy Neil, were the first-ever curlews from the Intermountain Bird Observatory’s Curlew Project to migrate directly from Idaho to the Central Coast in 2020 and spent nine months here (June 21, 2020 - March 21, 2021)?
Well, DOZER is back!
On July 12, 2021 Dozer was at Morro Strand State Beach, in the dry sand in front of the Alva Paul Creek mouth/lagoon.
Sadly, Neil died this spring. When he was in the Morro Bay area, he liked to alternate between the sand-spit and the bay.
Carol Comeau, a local volunteer curlew tracker, had traced Dozer’s recent route back from Idaho:
· June 27, 2021- started migration back to coast - went to eastern Oregon
· June 29, 2021- northern Nevada just off 95 north of Rebel Creek- in agricultural fields
· July 6, 2021 - near Merced, CA
· July 8, 2021 - back in Morro Bay
In late June Carol tracked Mimi, Dozer’s mate, first to agricultural fields just east of the Salton Sea, then to Sonora, Mexico, Reserva la Bios near the Colorado River.
Unlike in 2020, Dozer had a successful nest in 2021 with at least three chicks with his mate Mimi, the latest transmittered Curlew added to the study flock in 2021.
Research Biologist Heather Hayes reports:
“I didn't get a chance to see the chicks, but when I walked out to the nest to check they were mobbing me like crazy which suggests the chicks were on the run:-) There was one unfertilized egg left in the nest cup that appeared to have been predated on. - This makes my heart so happy that he has arrived back in Morro Bay!”
Heather Hayes is always looking for volunteer curlew trackers, who can commit to checking a bird once a week for at least six months. More information here: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1XFMnhNO4S4IBQnBFSQstPV6qxUqsNditqNbgSSFRrHw/edit#gid=1399634109