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Audubon sponsoring owl-banding trips

By Staff | Oct 10, 2014

The Potomac Valley Audubon Society is sponsoring two special nighttime field trips in early November to watch experts catch, band, and release migrating owls.

The first trip will be held Monday, Nov. 3, at an owl-banding station operated by West Virginia birding expert Bob Dean near Hedgesville. It will last from 5 to about 10 p.m.

The second trip will be held Saturday, Nov. 8, at a banding station operated by Maryland birding expert Steve Huy on South Mountain, near Boonsboro. It will start at about 9 p.m. and last until approximately 11:30 p.m.

In both instances, the owls being banded will be Northern Saw-Whet Owls, the smallest owl in eastern North America. These trips offer unique opportunities to see these birds up close and learn about their life history

The trips are family friendly, and everyone is invited to participate.

There is no fee for either trip but a donation of $5 or $10 to the South Mountain owl banding station is suggested. This will help support that station’s work.

Pre-registration is essential for both trips, because space is very limited.

To pre-register and get full information, go to the PVAS website at www.potomacaudubon.org or contact Krista Hawley at adultprograms@potomacaudubon.org or 703-303-1026.

Participants should bring flashlights and be sure to dress warmly.

Owls do not fly if it is raining, so these trips may be cancelled if conditions warrant.