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Identifying Raptors in Fall Migration in Wisconsin


Join William Mueller, Director Emeritus of the Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory, at the UWM Field Station to learn how to identify and monitor raptors during migration. The course will focus on learning how to identify raptors in flight; that is how we are most likely to see them during their autumn migration. Many field guides are useful for identifying a perched raptor, but birds in flight can look quite different from images in standard bird field guides, and their appearance can be confusing at first.

The course will investigate resources for learning and study (online sources); timing by species and weather conditions; how to participate in a “hawk count” (an “official” count or one you start by yourself); likely locations in eastern Wisconsin for autumn raptor migration (geographic locations and recommended sites); tools, field guides on raptors, and equipment; how raptors appear in various lighting conditions; and how to identify and count the Wisconsin species.

These species are possible in Wisconsin: vultures (2 species possible, 1 species likely), eagles (2 species), accipiters (3 species), buteos (6 species possible, 4 species likely), Osprey (1 species), Northern Harrier (1 species), falcons (5 species possible, 3 species likely), and kites (3 species possible).

Registration is open now. The fee is $35. The course is not available for college credit, 0.3 CEU. Register here:


Location information

UWM Field Station

3095 Blue Goose Road