21 September, 2012

South (Island Girl Ready to Begin Migration)

Lucky for all of us, Island Girl's transmitter is still functioning. Thank you Microwave Telemetry!

She spent another summer on Baffin Island near the same location as last year. We are assuming that this was her nest site or "eyrie" and hope she had a successful season raising young. To my knowledge, no one actually visited her site so we can't know for certain what transpired but peregrines being peregrines, that was why she was there.

As we approach the autumnal equinox, 22 September, Island Girl is preparing to depart her northern range for the long migration south to Chile. Hopefully, she will complete yet another southbound migration andcomplete her fourth migration since we put on her transmitter. That would make it eight north/south trips that we know of. Not sure but his may be a record for a satellite-tagged tundra peregrine.

It is likely that she is well fed and fat and ready to go. Since the independence of her young (assuming she had young), all of her time can be spent resting and laying in fat reserves for her upcoming epic journey south.

Island Girl has traditionally started her migration on 21 September, i.e. today. Don McCall has now officially retired from his position with Boeing and is currently on vacation but watching for the data to come in, so we will let you all know when she departs.

I'll be heading to South Padre Island, Texas, tomorrow for a week to trap and band migrant peregrines with Gregg Doney and the crew, so I will be reporting from there. The Padre study usually runs from 25 September through 25 October.

I think it is appropriate here to reiterate what many of you have written to me....."Go Island Girl!"


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