Curlew Crew members Stephanie and Joni were out near the Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area checking nests and found that one of the nests we had been monitoring had failed. After continuing their survey around the area of the nest, they discovered that the mother curlew had been freshly shot. Based on the bullet holes, they found that she had been shot straight through her wing and into her body. This means that she was poached while doing nothing but sitting perched on the ground.
Unlike some curlews, who seem to be shot while aggressively defending their nests, this female was simply shot because she was there.
Illegal shooting is a pressing local issue
We often think of poaching as an issue far away, in exotic locations like Africa. But poaching is alive and well in our own back yard. Please help us spread the Idaho Bird Conservation Partnership message that random shooting of protected species like this is illegal. Share this story with as many as possible. It could save the life of a curlew and its family.
What can you do?
Become a curlew ambassador! Wear your curlew t-shirt loud and proud, and tell others about these amazing birds. Get your shirt here.
While we work with local agencies like the Bureau of Land Management and Idaho Department of Fish and Game to improve enforcement of existing laws that protect curlews, we are also working on outreach to help prevent this from happening again. If you are interested in contributing to our outreach efforts, visit this link, and set the designation to “IBO Long-billed Curlew Satellite Tracking Project” https://give.boisestate.edu/ibo Even $5 goes a long way toward helping us reach school children, hunters education classes, and adult public land users.