The Motus Wildlife Tracking System has revolutionized how we record animal movements in nature. To learn more about this emerging technology, see the “Motus Wildlife Tracking” section of our Research webpage. The Powdermill Avian Research Center, as part of the Northeast Motus Collaboration, will host biannual workshops focusing on Motus technology.
Motus Workshops are offered in two parts: first, a virtual lecture series taking place over two days will provide baseline and background content designing projects using Motus Wildlife Tracking technology, managing data, and the structure and funding of a network array of Motus receiving stations. Second is an in-person technical portion held over seven days in the beautiful Appalachian Mountains of Southwestern Pennsylvania designed for those planning to install stations of their own. The in-person technical portion will discuss equipment planning and preparation, field installation techniques, and participants will have the opportunity to be part of two station builds. Installation days are long and labor intensive, come with proper work footwear and clothing, shorts and sandals are not recommended.
Virtual workshop registration is $300 for professionals, $150 for students and Latin American professionals. In-person workshop registration is $2,300 and includes meals and shared housing in modest cabins on property (bring your own linens). If you wish to stay elsewhere, standard accommodations are available at several nearby hotels for approximately $100 per night. Participants will be responsible for their own transportation.
OUR NEXT MOTUS WORKSHOP:
What to expect if you are registered
We will send reading materials in advance of the workshop start date, including papers related to Motus technology, a tentative itinerary, menu, and map. Workshop activities will begin Saturday evening at 5:00 pm with an opening talk outlining what to expect during the workshop and social time to get to know each other. Saturday activities will include equipment manipulation and preparing for field installations. On Sunday, workshoppers will gain first-hand experience installing a Motus receiver station by watching Powdermill Motus technicians rebuild a site nearby Powdermill. Later in the week workshoppers will be taken to a location to install a new receiver station by themselves with Powdermill technicians standing by for guidance. We plan to stay in local hotels near the sites and not at Powdermill for the entire week
About the area
Powdermill Nature Reserve is somewhat remote and sits in the valley between two ridges with a lot of surrounding state park and forest lands (i.e., lots of opportunities for hiking, exploring, etc.). If you wish to extend your stay before or after the workshop, places worth visiting include Linn Run State Park (4 mi), Forbes State Forest (5 mi), Laurel Summit State Park (10 mi), Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater (25 mi), and Ohiopyle/Ohiopyle State Park (30 mi). Barb’s Country store in Rector (3 mi) is the closest place for a few essentials or delicious deli sandwich. Ligonier, about 8 miles away, is the closest town and has plenty of shopping, restaurants, and a grocery store. A short drive farther west on Route 30 (~15 minutes) will take you to Latrobe, the closest city with large shopping centers and medical facilities.
What to pack
- Layers (warm/hot days can start with considerably cold mornings)
- Sleeping bag or sheets, pillowcase, blankets, towels and washcloths (the cabins do not come with linens)
- Soap and personal items
- Boots and rain gear – come prepared for the weather and walking/working outside
- Notebook and pen/pencil
- Water bottle
- Drinking water (OPTIONAL – tap water is tested and good to drink, but smells a bit metallic)
Still have questions?
Please read through the FAQs below. If you can’t find your answer there, please email our Workshop Coordinator, Jonathan Rice at firstname.lastname@example.org.