The Western Asio Flammeus Landscape Study (WAfLS) is a citizen science project designed to gather information to better evaluate the population status of the Short-eared Owl. In partnership with multiple entities across the west (Owl Research Institute, Nevada Department of Wildlife, Klamath Bird Observatory, HawkWatch International, Washington Department of Fish and Game, University of Wyoming Biodiversity Institute), the California Department of Fish and Wildlife is leading the WAfLS volunteer survey effort in California during the breeding season, March thru mid-May.
A series of randomly grids have been selected throughout CA. Within each grid, volunteer surveyors will select the optimal route along the public road system where point counts will occur. Volunteers can visit project website to obtain the protocol, data sheets, maps, reports, and to view a series of training videos.
You do not need to have expert identification skills to participate, only a keen interest in the project. A good pair of binoculars helps too. To sign-up, visit the website at http://www.avianknowledgenorthwest.net/citizen-science/short-eared-owls. Contact Carie Battistone at Carie.Battistone@wildlife.ca.gov if you have any questions.