Conserve Wildlife Blog

Project RedBand Alumni Update!

July 8th, 2016

Osprey 44/C re-sighted at Island Beach State Park!

by Ben Wurst, Habitat Program Manager

Project RedBand Osprey 44/C was re-sighted by Shayna Marchese on Island Beach State Park on July 3, 2016.

Project RedBand Osprey 44/C was re-sighted by Shayna Marchese on Island Beach State Park on July 3, 2016.

Really exciting news. For the first time this year, a (live and well) red banded osprey was re-sighted! 44/C was banded as a nestling on July 12, 2014 and photographed by Shayna Marchese on July 3, 2016 at Island Beach State Park. Young ospreys spend two years on their wintering grounds before returning to their natal areas. This is the first year that 44/C has returned to New Jersey. 44/C appears to be a male, and males have a higher level of site fidelity than females do, so they are more likely to return to the same area that they originated from. We aren’t surprised that one of our first red banded birds to be re-sighted in New Jersey was at Island Beach State Park, just outside Sedge Island Wildlife Management Area. For anyone who is not familiar with Sedge, it is the state’s most densely populated osprey colony in New Jersey. Around 30 pairs of ospreys nest at Sedge which is less than 3 square miles.

Project RedBand is a Barnegat Bay citizen science based osprey re-sighting project that aims to engage the osprey watching community in their long term conservation. At the same time, us biologists can learn a lot about their life history through these re-sightings, including their life span, site fidelity, nest site selection, foraging habits, and turnover in the population. Red bands are an auxiliary band and are much easier to read then the federal USGS bird bands. 

Banding a young osprey at a nest on July 1, 2016. Photo by Northside Jim.

Banding a young osprey at a nest on July 1, 2016. Photo by Northside Jim.

Join Shayna and when outdoors this summer, pick up some binoculars, a telephoto lens or a spotting scope and keep an eye out for red banded ospreys! We hope to get more sightings of 44/C and other Project RedBand ospreys this year and in the future. So far a total of 95 were deployed in 2014 and 2015. This year 16 have been deployed on young ospreys.

Special thanks to Northside Jim for donating to support Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ’s efforts to monitor and protect Barnegat Bay’s ospreys through Project RedBand!

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2 Responses to “Project RedBand Alumni Update!”

  1. Bonnie Delaney says:

    Awesome! Was 44C the only chick banded in that nest? Or was 45C also banded from that nest. Glad he was spotted back at Island Beach! Great Program! And thanks for Northside Jim’s help with Project Redband!

  2. Ben says:

    Yes. 44/C was the only nestling produced at this nest in 2014.

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