April 17th & 18th –

Ruthven Park:
We seem to be in a holding pattern – cruising along at low speed waiting for something to happen. The weather conditions have been iffy at best with fluctuating temperatures (1 degree yesterday at opening and 19 today when closing up) and with enough wind to billow the nets. Still we’re catching birds and the observed totals are slowly inching upwards.

DeKay’s Brown Snakes came out with the first real warmth of the Spring. -MMG

There are other signs of Spring too: yesterday there were a couple of Mourning Cloak butterflies and a Red Admiral and today we saw at least 3 DeKay’s Brown Snakes.

Carol’s goodies – they always brighten up a gray day. -MMG

And there was baking: Carol’s lemon loaf….delicious!
April 17th; Banded 23:
1 Northern Flicker
1 Eastern Phoebe
1 Black-capped Chickadee
1 Eastern Bluebird
2 Field Sparrows
2 Song Sparrows
4 Dark-eyed Juncos
11 American Goldfinches

ET’s: 42 spp.

April 18th; Banded 24:
1 Golden-crowned Kinglet
7 Ruby-crowned Kinglets
2 Hermit Thrushes
2 American Robins
1 Chipping Sparrow
3 Field Sparrows
2 Song Sparrows
1 Dark-eyed Junco
4 Brown-headed Cowbirds
1 American Goldfinch

ET’s: 44 spp. (including a Pine Warbler)

Fern Hill – Burlington

April 17th:
Our day was beautiful in Burlington. Bright blue skies, Tree Swallows were chattering and swooping overhead, seemingly enjoying the weather and checking out our school’s nest boxes. We have begun monitoring our school’s nest boxes, so today I brought our Junior Kindergarten class out to peek inside a box. Last week when I checked it I found a nest that didn’t look like a typical Bluebird, Swallow, or House Sparrow nest (the usual suspects found in our boxes) because it was lined with moss. I thought for this reason it might be a chickadee nest. To all of our delight and surprise, when I opened it up we found a female Eastern Bluebird and three eggs! It seems a bit early but I appreciate her go-getter attitude and I hope the weather cooperates for her little family.

Today we banded 5 birds including:
1 Field Sparrow
2 Song Sparrows
1 House Sparrow
1 Northern Cardinal

Throughout the day, Janice had a total of 40 species [ET’s] including our first sighted pair of ospreys passing through. Last year a pair nested on the nearby hydro towers, so here’s hoping for many more sights to come.

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