In preparation for this post, we were saddened to learn of the passing of CNDDB contributor Dr. Laurence Resseguie in 2017. We are grateful for Laurie’s tremendous contributions to Swainson’s hawk research in California.
Between 1998 and 2013, Dr. Resseguie submitted an incredible 1,695 field survey forms and reports to the California Natural Diversity Database; the vast majority of them for Swainson’s hawk (Buteo swainsoni), a state threatened species. This data was used to map 492 SWHA occurrences across 42 quads and 6 counties. Laurie’s field work increased our understanding of the northern limits of the breeding range of SWHA in California.
Dr. Resseguie’s dedication to his work was unparalleled. He came out of retirement to assist CNDDB with updates for Swainson’s hawk records in 2013, driving down from his home in Washington State to locate nest sites with CNDDB staff member Rachel Freund. Rachel recalls Dr. Resseguie marveling at the determination of the nesting hawks as the birds attempted to shade their eggs from the glaring summer sun and 100-plus degree heat. Clearly, Laurie possessed a wide streak of that same determination.
Laurie’s legacy is an example of how one individual’s observations can make a great impact on wildlife conservation in California. Leave your mark today by submitting rare species detections through the CNDDB Online Field Survey Form!
If you’d like to nominate an individual for CNDDB’s Contributor Spotlight, please email Rachel Freund at Rachel.Freund@wildlife.ca.gov.