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banded mountain plovers request for help

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  • woodshots
    Mountain Plovers will be moving through the state for another 3 months and birders would be doing the scientific community a great favor if they could keep an
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 4, 2009
      Mountain Plovers will be moving through the state for another 3 months and birders would be doing the scientific community a great favor if they could keep an eye out for banded birds and report them. The USFWS temporarily revoked the 2003 decision not to list the plovers. They are reviewing information on this species once again and will need to confirm/reject the 2003 decision by May 2011. Any data from banded bird reports is invaluable and to date no birders have reported banded birds from this state in the past 3 years except me, and that's not bragging. It's because I look hard for them and have access to a lot of private grazing land. The first banded bird I ever saw however was on my first ever Fresno Audubon field trip where Bev Brock spotted one in Panoche Valley and found out who to report it to (Michael Wunder) and that set me on a mission to chase after more the following winter. To date I've found 9 banded birds in Western Madera county and the researchers found banded birds in Imperial Co. last February. Prior to that they found banded birds in 1992-93 at Pixley NWR and the Carrizo Plains, but grazing is no longer allowed at Pixley I understand, hence no more plovers at that location. If you are close enough to a flock to see their upper legs (tibia) as they move around, the bands will be easy to spot since they are usually a combination of two colors on each leg, like white over orange or green over white or some other contrasting color combo. I know there are some out there banded from Wyoming, Colorado and Montana and if you succeed in finding one, please send an email with the info to Michael.Wunder(at)ucdenver.edu and he'll let you know where and when it was banded. I had one 3 weeks ago with yellow over white on the left leg and orange over silver on the right leg. It turned out to be my first Wyoming banded bird and it was captured last summer as an adult near Rawlins. Not only do I get a personal thrill at finding bands and finding out some history about that bird, but I know that it's another important piece of information that might have a big impact on the future status and survival of a unique bird who's numbers are shrinking every year and could use our help. Thanks, and good luck! Gary Woods-Fresno
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