The 2015/2016 Montezuma Winter Raptor Survey season will begin November 18th. 
Surveys have been conducted annually at Montezuma since 2010, and will be 
conducted weekly on Wednesdays, one half hour before sunset to one half hour 
after sunset. Surveyors follow an established protocol. We need veteran 
surveyors who are able to identify raptors who frequent our area. If you are an 
inexperienced surveyor, or even new to birding, you are welcome to attend and 
you will be assigned to accompany a veteran surveyor. The more eyes we have at 
each site the greater our chance of spotting raptors. Our work generates 
important data for use by the Montezuma National Wildlife Refuge and Department 
of Environmental Conservation in managing habitat. Accurate data collection is 
our number one priority. Our work is important, and I assure you that it will 
be appreciated. 

Approximately 20 sites at the Greater Montezuma Wetland Complex are surveyed. 
Species of particular interest are the Short-eared Owl (SEOW), which is 
endangered in N.Y. State, and the Northern Harrier (NOHA), which is threatened. 
All raptors are counted and their specific activity recorded.The surveys also 
provide an opportunity to sharpen ID skills, enjoy watching raptors conduct 
their deadly serious efforts in search of food under difficult climate 
conditions, and, experience the solitude of Montezuma in the winter. You will 
visit parts of Montezuma that are normally closed to the public, and learn more 
about what attracts raptors to the complex in the winter season. We meet at the 
Refuge Office at the times listed below where you will receive a briefing, 
obtain assignments, and pick up materials for the survey. Surveyors will return 
to the office after completion of the survey to turn in data and exchange 
information about experiences.

The meeting times for November and December are:

Wednesday, Nov. 18, meet at 3:25 pm 
Wednesday, Nov. 25, meet at 3:20 pm
Wednesday, Dec. 2, meet at 3:20 pm
Wednesday, Dec. 9, meet at 3:20 pm
Wednesday, Dec. 16, meet at 3:20 pm
Wednesday, Dec. 23, meet at 3:20 pm
Wednesday, Dec. 30, meet at 3:25 pm

The survey season runs through March. The survey dates and times for January, 
February, and March will be announced in mid-December. Surveyors must sign up 
to attend a survey no later than the evening before the survey date. If you are 
interested, please e-mail me, David Marsh,  at , put 
“Raptor Survey” in the subject line, and I will add you to the surveyor list. 
You will then receive weekly summary reports of the survey results. 

David S. Marsh
Canandaigua, New York

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