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Joel Jorgensen

Joel Jorgensen is a Nebraska native and he has been interested in birds just about as long as he has been breathing. He has been NGPC’s Nongame Bird Program Manager for eight years and he works on a array of monitoring, research, regulatory and conservation issues. Nongame birds are the 400 or so species that are not hunted and include the Whooping Crane, Least Tern, Piping Plover, Bald Eagle, and Peregrine Falcon. When not working, he enjoys birding.

A Peregrine death in the family

We received a call on Friday of a dead Peregrine Falcon found on the roof of the First National Bank tower in Omaha.  The bird was banded with the auxiliary marker (the color band with the letter/number combination in a large font) 98/H.   This particular band combination is familiar; 98/H was banded at the Nebraska State Capitol on 2 June 2009.  The Peregrine was given the name “Niobrara” as a result that year’s name-the-chick contest. The dead Peregrine Falcon’s …

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Peregrine Falcons will be back in 2013!!

Some of the bugs and details are being worked out, but the Peregrine Falcon webcams will be up and running again this year. In fact, they are up and running right now.  All we need is some spring weather and a couple of birds.  The Peregrine Falcons are around, they apparently overwintered at the Capitol again this year. Thanks to Troy Kroeger for his work on this project and also thanks to our collaborators down at the Nebraska State Capitol …

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Eagles at Wanahoo appear to have eggs

Early March is a decisive time for Bald Eagles in Nebraska. If a pair is serious about nesting, they are at or have surpassed the egg-laying stage and have hunkered down for the month-plus-long incubation period. Sometimes, likely young pairs, may “play house” and build a nest but never follow through on actually nesting. Lake Wanahoo’s Bald Eagle nesting pair is established so it does not come as a surprise they appear to be on eggs. I visited the nest …

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Glaucous-winged Gull photo gallery

Finding rarities is just one of the great joys of birding.  A few photos are below of a near adult or adult Glaucous-winged Gull which Carlos Grandes and I found at Lake Ogallala on 16 February 2013.  Glaucous-winged  Gulls are a west coast species and, if accepted, this would be a fourth state record.  All photos are by Carlos Grandes.

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Salmonellosis suspected in eastern Nebraska – clean your bird feeders!

I received a report Monday morning of a few sick and dead Pine Siskins observed at up to three sites in eastern Nebraska.   Pine Siskins are small finches similar to American Goldfinches.   Siskins occur in flocks and will frequent bird feeders and this has been a particularly good winter for siskins in some parts of Nebraska.  Salmonellosis is a bacterial disease that is in the salmonella family and birds commonly contract the disease at bird feeders.  Pine Siskins tend …

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Eagle watching prime time

Even though they are increasingly numerous, people still like to watch Bald Eagles.  From a general standpoint we have now entered the best period for eagle watching in my view.  Yes, during the depths of winter there are the ol’ standard viewing locations such as Lake Ogallala/Lake McConaughy, the J-2 Hydro-electric plant near Lexington, and Gavin’s Point Dam.   Those sites are very good, don’t get me wrong.  However, we are now in February and with winter’s grip loosening over the …

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Nebraska BBS opportunities – 2013

As some may already know, the Breeding Bird Survey (BBS) is a long-term, volunteer-driven bird monitoring program conducted throughout North America. BBS data are used widely by wildlife agencies, researchers and in conservation planning. More information can be found here. Recently, I took over as the state BBS coordinator and perhaps my principal duty is identify individuals that may be able to fill vacant routes. Currently, there are four available routes in Nebraska, these are shown on the map below …

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