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  • HMANA Research Award

    Melanie Colón

    Offering Support to the HawkCount Migration Monitoring Network


    Currently, many hawk watch sites across North America are struggling to find funding to sustain their counts. This is why HMANA has created the Hawk Watch Fund to offer support to the hawk watching community. The purpose of this Fund is to provide grants to assist watch sites looking for support whether it’s educational materials and displays, construction and maintenance of viewing platforms, hiring hawk watchers, or purchase of equipment. These grants will be made through a competitive application process and judged annually by a committee appointed by HMANA.


    Program Goals and Objectives


    Founded in 1974, HMANA’s mission is “To advance scientific knowledge and promote conservation of raptor populations through study and appreciation of raptor migration.” HMANA provides services to the hawk watching community via HawkCount, its online hawk watch information system and data archive www.hawkcount.org, and the Raptor Population Index program www.rpi-project.org. Initiated in 2011, Hawk Watch Fund seeks to support HMANA’s mission by providing grants to help support independent hawk watches in the Americas.


    The Hawk Watch Fund Grants Program is intended to provide grants of $250 to $1000 to non-profit hawk watch groups for volunteer-based projects that promote the overall goals and objectives of the Hawk Migration Association of North America by supporting the operation of a hawk watch. The number and size of grants will depend on the amount of money available in the Fund each year and the suitability of applications. In 2014, we expect to award three to five grants with a total value of about $2,000.


    Funding for Hawk Watch Fund comes from proceeds of HMANA’s annual spring Raptorthon and from direct donations to the Fund. The more people who take part and raise money in Raptorthon, the more money will be available in Hawk Watch Fund to go to the sites in grants. Additionally anyone can make a direct donation to the Hawk Watch Fund by going to HMANA’s donation page on this website. Be sure to select Hawk Watch Fund from the list.


    Application and Evaluation Process


    Applications will be evaluated by a committee of hawk watchers and raptor experts appointed by the HMANA Board. Members of the committee and their closely-related organizations are not eligible to apply for or receive grants. Decisions made by the committee shall be solely theirs and shall be final.


    Eligible Project Types

    Hawk Watch Fund will support projects involving research, monitoring, education or conservation, such as:

     Educational materials and displays

     Construction and maintenance of viewing platforms

     Hiring of hawk watchers and other staff

     Staff and volunteer expenses related to specific projects

     Purchase of equipment

     Any other activity consistent with HMANA’s mission

    The following projects are generally considered to be a low priority for funding:

     Graduate student research

     Web site design and maintenance

     Publication costs

     Birding festivals/promotions

     Raptor rehabilitation projects

     Construction of artificial nest structures and nest boxes

    Geographic Scope: The Americas.

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