5 min read

Boston Airport Saving Snowy Owls One Bird At A Time

<p>Flickr, suneko</p>


We've caught 20 snowy owls so far this season at Logan International Airport in Boston. Over the years, we've put satellite transmitters on the owls to see if they make it back to the Arctic, and found a number of them do.
Smith and his colleagues use a mouse or bird in a cage to lure the owls away from the planes, and then release them away from the airport to prevent them from flying into the jet engines -- birds have proved problematic for planes in lots of instances before. This is a change for most airport bird management, which often kills nearby birds, fearing that they will endanger the safety of passengers.

We've caught 20 snowy owls so far this season at Logan International Airport in Boston. Over the years, we've put satellite transmitters on the owls to see if they make it back to the Arctic, and found a number of them do.


Smith and his colleagues use a mouse or bird in a cage to lure the owls away from the planes, and then release them away from the airport to prevent them from flying into the jet engines -- birds have proved problematic for planes in lots of instances before. This is a change for most airport bird management, which often kills nearby birds, fearing that they will endanger the safety of passengers.


UPDATE: While Logan Airport is being praised for saving owls, officials at JFK International Airport in New York have shot down at least two snowy owls and issued an alert to kill any more that are spotted there, according to NBC 4 New York.

The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey issued the shoot-to-kill order for the birds after one flew into a jet's engine while the plane was on a tarmac at Kennedy last week, the source said. Port Authority workers shot two snowy owls with a shotgun on Saturday amid concerns that they would also fly into planes. A wildlife specialist who works for the Port Authority spent 45 minutes chasing one of them down, the source said.Thanks to reader Adam P. Summers for the tip.

The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey issued the shoot-to-kill order for the birds after one flew into a jet's engine while the plane was on a tarmac at Kennedy last week, the source said. Port Authority workers shot two snowy owls with a shotgun on Saturday amid concerns that they would also fly into planes. A wildlife specialist who works for the Port Authority spent 45 minutes chasing one of them down, the source said.