My name is Annika. I am working on a wildlife project as a junior member in my 4H club. If I do a good job, I will earn a blue ribbon at the fair. The project I am doing is to help with banding Saw-Whet Owls in Colorado.
Bird banding is important to ecology and conservation. Birds are caught in mist nets and then a small numbered "bracelet" or band is placed on one of their legs. Data about each bird is recorded and uploaded to a national database. Healthy birds are immediately released once the data is collected. Although rare, unhealthy birds are taken to a rescue and reabilitation facility until they are well enough for release. Monitoring various bird species not only gives an indication of population numbers, health and migratory habits, but it also ties in with indicating the overall health of other species within the habitat.
I will use the funds raised here to purchase a wireless night vision camera system to monitor the mist nets at the banding station. The nets are set just before dusk and are then checked every half hour until an owl is caught and then they are checked every 15 minutes. We wait inside a building so as not to scare off the owls. An owl could possibly be in the net for 29 minutes before we go out to get it. If we could view the net area remotely we could retrieve the owl immediately once it gets in the net. This would shorten the amount of time the owl would be stressed. I hope you will help me reach this goal. It will make for some very happy owls.