Yesterday was packed with excitement- in the early afternoon of Tuesday, April 9th we received a call from a citizen scientist with the first confirmed 2019 sighting of a loggerhead shrike in Ontario! The individual was spotted near our Napanee release site in the Napanee Limestone Plain.
As if that news wasn’t exciting enough, we also received a call from Long Point Bird Observatory with word that they caught a returning banded loggerhead shrike! The individual was released last season after being raised at African Lion Safari, one of our captive breeding partner facilities, and released at the Napanee field site. Though we’ve seen birds from the conservation-breeding program around Long Point on a couple occasions during fall migration (one in 2004 and another in 2006), this is the first time that one of our birds has been caught at an Ontario banding station in spring.
Hopefully this bird will soon make its way to the Ontario breeding grounds, where our field teams will be scouring the landscape to find and monitor all the shrikes they can. Each returning bird holds the promise of a nest full of young, and a step towards recovery for this endangered species.
It is always extremely inspiring to see our released birds successfully return to Ontario. One thing’s for sure after yesterday’s excitement- the shrikes are back in town for the season!
If you spot a loggerhead shrike in Ontario you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to hear from you!
Did you know? Long Point Bird Observatory (LPBO) is the founding program of Bird Studies Canada and the oldest bird observatory in the western hemisphere. LPBO has been monitoring Canadian bird populations on Long Point since 1960 and is a founding member of the Canadian Migration Monitoring Network. This is the second time LPBO has caught one of Wildlife Preservation Canada’s colour banded shrikes.
Conservation Breeding Coordinator – Eastern Loggerhead Shrike Program
Jane holds a Master’s degree in Animal Biosciences from the University of Guelph, where she studied building collision injuries in migratory songbird species. Jane worked as a rehabilitation supervisor, where she was responsible for the care, treatment, and reintroduction of injured and orphaned wildlife, including many species at risk.