Each fall, millions of raptors—hawks, eagles, condors, falcons, etc.—migrate south. They face numerous threats along the way and many parts of their routes are unknown to science. While there are several monitoring sites elsewhere in Central America, information is limited in Nicaragua, Central America's largest country. To safeguard the migratory pathways of these incredible birds, we must learn more about their migratory behaviors and protect their key resting areas. As a step toward this, you can provide key funding to support our second year of raptor monitoring as our team works to create a permanent raptor monitoring program. Your help is needed and will make a difference.
We have a great site. Last year, our team found a major migratory pathway and documented an estimated 1.29 million raptors in just 3 weeks. The average number of raptors counted per hour was 6,117! The most common species were turkey vultures (Cathartes aura), Swainson's hawks (Buteo swainsoni), and broad-winged hawks (Buteo platypterus). Our team included brilliant Nicaraguan ornithologist Luis Díaz Chávez. He tragically passed away from COVID-19 this summer (read a memorial article about him here). We hope to honor his memory with this work and name a permanent raptor monitoring station after him.
With your help, following strict health protocols, this fall's team will start in late September and monitor continuously for two months. Your donation will help protect raptors, contribute to worldwide migration knowledge, and support and protect more brilliant homegrown ornithologists like Luis. Please give today.
Other raptor photos taken by Vincent Romera during the 2019 raptor monitoring
1: Part of the 2019 raptor team, by Marlon Sotelo. Luis Díaz Chávez is in the center.
3: Turkey vultures (Cathartes aura) spotted during the 2019 raptor monitoring, by Vincent Romera
4: Raptors in flight spotted during the 2019 raptor monitoring, by Vincent Romera
5: Luis Díaz Chávez during the 2019 raptor monitoring, by Marlon Sotelo
6 & 7: Juvenile and adult Swainson's hawks (Buteo swainsoni) spotted during the 2019 raptor monitoring, by Vincent Romera
8: Part of the 2020 raptor team, by Oswaldo Saballos. Help them today with a donation!