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3-5 March 2017 Houston, Minnesota USA

HomeAdult Programs

Owl Festival Adult Programs

Blakiston's Fish Owl Conservation in Russia

Saturday, March 4, 2017 at 1:30 PM


Dr. Jonathan Slaght with a Blakiston's Fish Owl
2017 World Owl Hall of Fame Special Achievement Award Winner

Blakiston’s fish owl is a globally-endangered species found in old growth, riverine forests of northeast Asia where it feeds primarily on salmon. The Blakiston’s Fish Owl Project was established in 2005 as a collaborative study between the Wildlife Conservation Society, the Russian Academy of Sciences, and the University of Minnesota, and has diversified over the past decade into a wide-ranging conservation project that includes the identification and establishment of “micro-protected areas” within logging concessions, placement of artificial nest boxes in locations where natural nest cavities are absent, and population monitoring. Dr. Jonathan Slaght, the Russia and Northeast Asia Coordinator for the Wildlife Conservation Society, will describe Blakiston’s fish owl ecology and the successes and challenges of fish owl conservation in Russia over the last twelve years. 


Blakiston's Fish Owl Survival in Hokkaido, Japan

Sunday, March 5, 2017 at 11:00 AM


Sumio Yamamoto with a Blakiston's Fish Owl

2017 World Owl Hall of Fame Special Achievement Award Winner

Only seven species of owls in the world primarily eat fish, and the Blakiston’s Fish Owl is the only one to live outside of a tropical region—living in a subarctic climate. The secret to the owl’s success is likely the high concentration of salmonid fish in the area, plus its ability to switch to non-fish prey when necessary. At one time more than 1,000 Blakiston’s Fish Owls inhabited Hokkaido, but because of human development there are now only about 100 fish owls left. 


USA Premiere of "The Secret Life of Owls"

Sunday, March 5, 2017 at 2:00 PM


Join emmy award-winning cinematographer Neil Rettig and his wife Laura Johnson to see this film about Great Horned Owls for its first showing in the United States. Neil and Laura will talk about the making of the film as well as the film's star, as well as answer questions. Thank you to Make Believe Media for allowing us to show this film for the first time in the U.S. at the International Festival of Owls!



No pre-registration is necessary. An admission wristband is required, which can be purchased at the door.
Programs at Houston High School.


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