I’m thrilled that a new chapter of Geography Club has started up in my current town. We have been meeting semi-regularly to exchange ideas, share our projects, and go to events and talks. It’s been great to connect with people here and to get to nature nerd out with folks who share a similar critique of naturalist rhetoric.

The photo featured here is of a Northern Saw-Whet Owl. I was volunteering with the Rocky Point Bird Observatory this year, helping with song bird and owl banding. In the mornings migratory song birds are caught, from sparrows to kinglets to warblers. I learned to extract birds from the nets, and banded several song birds. In the evenings Saw-Whet Owls are the focus, and I spent one evening in particular guarding the nets so that barred owls wouldn’t prey on the smaller owls once they were caught.

It is a pretty neat thing to hold a small bird in your hand, but I did’t take the work lightly. There is much to be considered when iterrupting the life of a small creature. The information that is being gathered does not have a specific application just yet, much of it is banking the info so that once enough of it is compiled it will reveal patterns that are helpful to support programs and legislation to help birds.

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