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3070DeBeque Owl Banding Station

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  • Kim M Potter
    Sep 29 3:32 PM
      We will begin our Tuesday evening banding sessions at DeBeque this year on
      September 30th.

      If you’d like to join us please send me an e-mail or leave a message by
      the Monday before.

      We have a campfire but last October the temperatures (from net opening
      to net closing at 10:00 PM) ranged from 52 to 37 degrees. Bring a chair
      to make yourself comfortable. Don’t forget your head lamp-it’s helpful
      if the light has a red lamp option.

      Meet at the SE side of the I-70 interchange at DeBeque on the south
      frontage road @ the intersection with V.0 road. We will be leaving from
      here at 6 PM sharp. If you are riding with me from Rifle we will be
      departing from the Rifle Ranger Station at 5:30 sharp.

      Departure times will change when we begin daylight savings time and as
      the days shorten.

      DeBeque Sunnyside Owl Banding Station History

      Begun in 2002 as an all volunteer effort when Glenn Giroir, Rich Levad,
      (both of Rocky Mountain Bird Observatory RMBO) and Kim Potter USFS (all
      licensed banders) each purchased one 12 meter nylon mesh net with the
      intent to capture and mark migrating Northern Saw-whet Owls during fall
      migration on their own time and dime. We set up a banding station on the
      northwest corner of the Battlement Mesa or the Sunnyside as it is
      called. We captured and banded owls between sunset and 10PM every
      Tuesday evening from September until Thanksgiving. We captured and
      banded owls between sunset and 10 PM every Tuesday evening from
      September until Thanksgiving. Banding a total of 41 Northern Saw-whet
      Owls, 1 Long-eared Owl, and 1 Western Screech Owl over 5 years, we have
      never captured the same bird twice, suggesting that these are indeed
      migrating owls and not just residents. We’ve learned that owl migration
      for Saw-whet Owls begins in early October, peaks around Halloween, and
      usually ends by Thanksgiving.

      In 2007, nets in DeBeque were open for 22 hours during 7 sessions; we
      captured and banded 5 Northern Saw-whet Owls.

      Kim M. Potter
      Wildlife Technician
      White River National Forest
      (970) 625-6860
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