As regular CFZ-watchers will know, for some time Corinna has been doing a column for Animals & Men and a regular segment on On The Track... particularly about out-of-place birds and rare vagrants. There seem to be more and more bird stories from all over the world hitting the news these days so, to make room for them all - and to give them all equal and worthy coverage - she has set up this new blog to cover all things feathery and Fortean.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

High tech bird count: Radar used to track raptors

AWENDAW, S.C. (AP) — Bird counters usually head into a field or forest carrying binoculars and a pad to record what they see. But a South Carolina center went high-tech this fall, using radar in its annual count of falcons, eagles, hawks and other raptors flying along the coast.

Officials at the Center for Birds of Prey say it's thought to one of the only places where modified marine radar is being used to help count raptors. And they say it should help increase the number of birds sighted by watchers on the ground.

The survey has been taken from mid-September through mid-November for the last 15 years as volunteers head into fields at the 150-acre center northeast of Charleston.

"We know that by counting migrating raptors and watching patterns over time we pick up trends," said Stephen Schabel, the center's director of education. "One of our missions is to monitor what is happening out there in the environment and its potential effects."

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