Journal archives for June 2022

07 June, 2022

Renew IPNRM for 2022?

@masonmaron @cgates326 @peterolsoy @the-catfinch @jnelson @uta_stansburiana @andybridges @philkahler @brodiecasstalbott @nightjar09 @kenchamberlain @benmeredyk @er-birds @peregrinetracy @sydnianajones @josegarrido @hkibak @rlfg @bwana28 @eliloftis @craigjhowe @docprt @danithedeer @flammulated @chrisleearm

If you are one of the mentioned people above, that means that between July and December since 2019, you are one of the top observers for "raptors" for Oregon and Washington counties east of the Cascade Mountains. All raptors observed within this time frame was automatically added to a project I managed called the Inland Pacific Northwest Raptor Migration. The idea was to observe all 35 expected species of raptors, starting from the breeders (July/August) to migrants (September/October), to wintering species (November/December). It was also supposed to document as many individuals as possible.

The reason why I'm tagging you is because I'm wondering if I should renew the project for the 2022 season. This August, I will be moving to Wyoming, which means I will personally have little participation in the project. I'm worried that if I do create the 2022 project, it will have a very low outcome of observations since a third of all the reports are my own:

Now I understand some of you don't live within the project perimeters, all I'm searching for is public opinion on how the project went. If it is something you enjoyed and was looking forward to, then I'll get started on the 2022 project. If it was of minimum importance to you or you don't really care, then it's apparent a project for this year will just fizzle out. I just want to hear what you have to say.

Posted on 07 June, 2022 16:16 by birdwhisperer birdwhisperer | 3 comments | Leave a comment

18 June, 2022

Welcome to WRS!

@aiyanamiller @jay @alorenz @toadfish @ilee1112 @bcvi @staes @cbadwebs @kris307 @kslwombat @paulknoepfler @bbunny @codystricker @jdmelee @erikamitchell @isaacthelord @ki6h @zaccota @christophermayhew @jamesjarrett00 @mikelesnik @nhwinterrose @johnrosford @cecilie75 @cporter @frodejacobsen

If you tagged above, then you are one of the top observers of "raptors" in Wyoming. If you do not live in Wyoming, or you do not plan on visiting the state within the next 6 months, then forego this message.

Raptors are species belonging in one of the four following groups of birds; Cathartiformes (vultures), Accipitriformes (osprey, eagles and hawks), Strigiformes (owl) and Falconiiformes (falcons). They all share unique traits that distinguish them from other "birds of prey" like herons or pelicans. They all exhibit flesh-tearing beaks and talons to capture prey.

The Wyoming Raptor Survey is based off of my predecessor project, the Inland Pacific Northwest Raptor Survey, which covered eastern Washington and Oregon. Now that I'm going to be a Wyoming resident, I see no reason to not continue this project into the new state I'm living in. It seems like a good idea too because I looked at the raptor stats for iNat. Those following statistics are listed below:

Cathartiformes = 97 observation from 1 species
Accipitriformes = 1,771 observations from 13 species
Strigiformes = 215 observations from 10 species
Falconiiformes = 160 observations from 4 species
Total = 2,243 observations from 28 species

All I can say is, yikes! To put this into perspective, I ran the Inland PNW survey from 2019-2021, and I do plan on renewing it for the 2022 season. We have 3,248 observations... in 18 months. And that is excluding iNat observation submitted before 2019 and observation submitted in the first six months of the year. Let me throw out some more stats. The state of Oregon had 2,728 observations submitted below July and December in 2022, and Washington had 1,923 observations in the same time frame. Coastal Washington and Oregon got 3,450.

What does this mean? Wyoming is slacking! I understand that this is the least populous state in the country, but with Yellowstone, I was expecting quite a few more observations. I believe a project like this can really help boost those iNat numbers. The project is designed to do the following:

  • Submit verifiable observations of as many raptors as possible between July and December 2022.
  • Designed to get as many species as possible; July-August for breeders, September and October for migrants and possible vagrants, November and December for wintering species.
  • If there is no selective photography (ex. driving down a backroad and photographing a Bald Eagle on a telephone pole, then skipping the Red-tailed Hawk on the next pole), we can use this data for population dynamics.
  • Wyoming has what I would 3 major ecosystem; Yellowstone, the Great Basin and the Great Plains. This means that Wyoming is in the crossroads for geographic variation, so we get a variety of subspecies. Identification to these subspecies can help us understand distribution better.

Below is the Wyoming state list for raptors, and the subspecie(s) expected or possible in the state.

  • Cathartiformes
    -- California Condor -- Rare
    -- Black Vulture -- Rare
    -- Turkey Vulture -- Common (Summer/migration) to rare (winter)

  • Accipitriformes
    -- Osprey -- Common (summer), uncommon (migration) and rare (winter)
    -- White-tailed Kite -- Rare
    -- Swallow-tailed Kite -- Rare
    -- Golden Eagle -- Uncommon
    -- Mississippi Kite -- Rare
    -- Northern Harrier -- Common
    -- Sharp-shinned Hawk -- Uncommon
    -- Cooper's Hawk -- Uncommon
    -- Northern Goshawk -- Uncommon
    -- Bald Eagle -- Common
    -- Harris's Hawk -- Rare
    -- Red-shouldered Hawk -- Rare
    -- Broad-winged Hawk -- Occasional (migration)
    -- Swainson's Hawk -- Common (summer/migration) and uncommon (October)
    -- Red-tailed Hawk -- Common
    -- Rough-legged Hawk -- Rare (July-September) and common (October-December)
    -- Ferruginous Hawk -- Uncommon

  • Strigiformes
    -- Barn Owl -- Occasional
    -- Flammulated Owl -- Occasional (summer/migration)
    -- Western Screech-Owl -- Rare
    -- Eastern Screech-Owl -- Occasional
    -- Great Horned Owl -- Uncommon
    -- Snowy Owl -- Rare
    -- Northern Pygmy-Owl -- Occasional
    -- Burrowing Owl -- Occasional
    -- Barred Owl -- Rare
    -- Great Gray Owl -- Occasional
    -- Long-eared Owl -- Occasional
    -- Short-eared Owl -- Occasional
    -- Boreal Owl -- Occasional
    -- Northern Saw-whet Owl -- Occasional
    -- American Kestrel -- Common
    -- Merlin -- Occasional (summer) and uncommon (migration/winter)
    -- Gyrfalcon -- Rare
    -- Peregrine Falcon -- Uncommon (July-September) and rare (October-December)
    -- Prairie Falcon -- Uncommon

Species with Multiple Subspecies in the State

Red-tailed Hawk

-- Western Red-tailed Hawk (calurus) -- This should be the expected subspecies throughout the state.
-- Eastern Red-tailed Hawk (borealis) -- Likely breeds (and likely intergrades with calurus) in the Great Plains east of the Bighorn and Laramie Mountains. Possibly vagrants to central Wyoming. Few eBird reports and all very close to state borders.
-- Harlan's Hawk (harlani) -- Winters throughout state.
-- Northern Red-tailed Hawk (abieticola) -- Distribution unknown in Wyoming (no accepted eBird reports), but likely winters in eastern half of the state.

Great Horned Owl

-- B. v. lagophonus -- Probably Yellowstone and Grand Tetons
-- B. v. pinorum -- Unknown, recently described subspecies, but probably Great Basin south and west of Wind River Mountains.
-- B. v. subarcticus -- Winter in northern Wyoming (warning: can be easily misidentified as Snowy Owl!)
-- B. v. virginianus -- Possibly eastern Wyoming.


-- Prairie Merlin (richardonsoni) -- Expected subspecies. Breeds throughout state and seen in all seasons.
-- Taiga Merlin (columbarius) -- Winters throughout state.
-- Black Merlin (suckleyi) -- Rare vagrant

Peregrine Falcon

-- North American Peregrine Falcon (anatrum) -- Expected subspecies
-- Tundra Peregrine Falcon (tundrius) -- Rare vagrant throughout state

Ok, I think that covers everything for you. If you can participate in the project, I would be great. The project officially starts on July 1st, so only a week and a half from now. Good luck and good birding!

Posted on 18 June, 2022 17:42 by birdwhisperer birdwhisperer | 2 comments | Leave a comment