It is with some sadness that I must admit the purely fun part of my thesis research at Boise State University’s Raptor Biology program is now deceased. I ask: what could be more enjoyable than standing outside all day counting birds of prey? Unfortunately the only answer I have for that is writing, writing, and more writing! Perhaps I am being a bit dramatic, as this is the part of my research experience where I find out exactly what all that winter raptor data I collected means. I will continue updating this blog with my research findings, and other fun tidbits (such as a photographic ID to aging and sexing Rough-Legged Hawks!) as they come along.
For those who don’t already know, I will eventually be looking to see how winter raptor numbers have changed in southwest Idaho over the last 20 years, and how these changes have been affected by habitat and climate change. Until then, here are the raw count totals from November 15, 2011 – February 28, 2012 inside the Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area. And some photographic highlights from the last month and a half!