Field Season in Full Swing

Updated: Oct 18, 2018


Photo by Jim Gindorff

Welcome to the Red-headed woodpecker Research and Recovery blog! Our 2018 field season came fast and furious this year as many of our birds at Cedar Creek began courtship and nesting 3-4 weeks before the 2017 breeding season! It has been an extremely busy spring and early summer and we're finally coming up for air... to get the blog out and provide a quick update on our work this summer. Our team has been closely monitoring 38 nest cavities - many of which now have eggs or nestlings. A number of nestlings have recently fledged, and we're excited to share details on their movements and behaviors as the season progresses. One of our major tasks this summer has been to recapture the 20 adult woodpeckers we marked with pinpoint GPS units last summer. Recapturing them will allow us to remove their GPS devices and download the movement/migration data that the device collected over the last year. We've recaptured five of these individuals and we're working hard to find any others that are at Cedar Creek this summer. It's still unclear if some or all of these birds overwintered at Cedar Creek or if some left and came back this spring. Stay tuned for more on that! We're also tracking 14 adults using radio-telemetry equipment to collect home range and habitat use data. Many of the birds we're tracking are in the bison enclosure, so it's been a daily adventure to collect our data and keep a safe distance from these amazing mammals.


Check back soon for more updates and Happy Fourth of July!




© 2018 Elena West

All rights reserved. Images used with permission.