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a close up photo of frank the curlew

Old transmitter stopped signaling in August 2019

Alpha Flag Code:


Capture date:





The Long-billed Curlew Area of Critical Environmental Concern(ACEC) between Middleton and Emmett Idaho.


Frank and his mate Bethine (2014 to 2017) were named after Frank and Bethine Church. The Church’s are a famous couple in Idaho, known for their work in conservation of Idaho’s wild places. In fact, one of the largest wilderness areas in the lower 48 shares their name: The Frank Church river of no return wilderness!

In 2018, we determined that we would like to catch Frank to remove his transmitter. The average lifespan of our transmitter batteries is around 3-4 years. If we can catch a curlew and remove the transmitter, we’re able to refurbish that valuable transmitter and re-use it to track a new bird! Unfortunately, after Bethine passed away, Frank did not find a new mate in 2018 or 2019. This means that he was not sitting on a nest: the only way we are able to catch curlews during the breeding season. We will continue to look for Frank’s return, despite the fact that his transmitter battery has died, and if he finds a mate we’ll be able to catch him and officially “retire” him from our curlew team by removing his transmitter.

At the time his transmitter gave out, Frank was our longest-tracked curlew on this project (5 years and 3 months)!

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