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Celebrating 10 Years of Northern Saw-whet Owl Migration Research!

2021 is the 10th year of ORI's Northern Saw-Whet Owl field research.

Please help us to continue this vital project!

Three people in a row, each holding an owl. The photographer's arm, holding a 4th owl, is also visible, so the 4 owls are all in a row.
Four Northern Saw-whet Owls at once! Good thing we had all these volunteers!

Long-term research is key in expanding knowledge of this unique species. Our research helps us learn about longevity of the species, migration routes, patterns, and the habitats they need to thrive. This information is key to effective conservation of saw-whets and all owl species.

Please make a donation today and support long-term research!

Your gift will:

  • maintain our field station

  • support biologists & volunteers

  • host public education events

Researcher holds a northern saw-whet owl while taking scientific measurements at the banding station
Northern Saw-whet Owl in the banding station

Studying northern saw-whet owls is challenging because they are nocturnal, secretive, and have irregular seasonal migrations. For example, males and females will migrate at slightly different times, and will travel different distances to different places. There can also be differences based on age- young birds may not migrate at the same time as adults. While there have been many efforts to study northern saw-whets across North America, much is still unknown about their biology and migration.


Stats from the 2021season so far:

A barred owl held by a researcher.
Barred Owl
  • Number of Northern Saw-whet Owls caught: 135

  • Number of recaptured Northern Saw-whet Owls (owls that were previously banded): 5

  • 1 recaptured owl was originally banded in Saskatchewan, Canada, in 2019.

  • The other recaptured owls were originally banded by ORI in 2017, 2020, and earlier this season.

  • Number of Barred Owls caught: 1

  • Number of Flying Squirrels caught: 2

  • Number of nights the banding station has been open: 30

  • Number of volunteers: 12

Huge thanks to all our banding station volunteers: Judith, Cooper, Lindsay, Pati, Brenna, Tanner, Alex, Elsa, Logan, Justin, Amanda, and Ashleigh.

We couldn't do it without you!

Our Northern Saw-whet Owl banding station runs until the end of October. Follow ORI on Facebook and Instagram for more photos and updates from the field.


New shirts!

Also, check out our BRAND NEW Northern Saw-whet Owl design, commemorating 10 years of banding!

Available in adult sweatshirts, long-sleeve, and t-shirts; and in youth long-sleeve and t-shirts.

Thanks for your support!


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