Avian Research

Hawk Color Banding

I live in Marin County, California, and do my work primarily in rural Marin and Sonoma Counties. I capture adult red-tailed and red-shouldered hawks and place special color leg-bands, also known as vid bands on the right legs of these adult birds, in addition to the standard Fish and Wildlife Service bands on the left leg. The vid bands each have a unique two-digit code for each bird, such as A over A, A over B, etc. and these codes allow me to identify individual birds with a spotting scope without the need to handle the birds again.

Thus, I am able to study annual survivorship, fidelity to territory and mate, migratory status, and territory use of these birds. This is a relatively new study, and to date I have color banded approximately 50 red-shouldered hawks and the same number of red-tailed hawks.

Additionally, I use standard Fish and Wildlife service bands to band juvenile hawks that I am able to capture in a wider area of about ten counties around San Francisco Bay. And I band with Fish and Wildlife Service bands adult raptors of all species in areas where I do not have sufficient time to properly look for colorbanded birds.

I would like to expand my work to also band nestling raptors, as I do encounter and track a number of nests, but I do not have the personal wherewithal to climb the very tall eucalyptus trees that local raptors commonly nest in! If someone with excellent tree-climbing skills would like to visit and volunteer some time in climbing trees to band nestling raptors, please feel free to contact me!
Stan Moore
P.O. Box 341
San Geronimo, CA
(415) 662-2617
email at gabboon@pacbell.net or hawkman11@hotmail.com

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