August 16th – Banding Update

Hey Rick,

 I went out to Ruthven again this morning. It was another productive day. I banded for about 4.5 hours, then it got really sunny, windy and hot.

 The highlight was recapturing a female American Goldfinch that was originally banded as an adult bird in 2006! So cool when we get these records.


Juvenile male Eastern Bluebird. -M. Timpf

Diversity was much higher today. The bluebirds and gnatcatchers were both family groups that were caught in the net all at once, which made it nice to compare adult and juvenile plumages.

Juvenile Scarlet Tanager - a male (note the black secondary coverts) -M. Timpf


New Birds = 27

 Eastern Tufted Titmouse – 1

Eastern Bluebird – 3

Gray Catbird -1

Blue-gray Gnatcatcher – 5

Northern Waterthrush – 1

Trail’s Flycatcher – 2

Black-capped Chickadee – 2

Eastern Wood-Pewee – 1

House Finch – 1

Song Sparrow – 2

Swainson’s Thrush – 1

Scarlet Tanager – 1

Wood Thrush -1

Baltimore Oriole – 1

American Robin – 3

Hairy Woodpecker -1

 Recaptures = 12

 Northern Cardinal – 2

Warbling Vireo – 1

Eastern Tufted Titmouse – 2

White-breasted Nuthatch – 1

Blue-winged Warbler – 1

*** American Goldfinch – 1

Eastern Bluebird – 1

Common Yellowthroat – 1

Gray Catbird – 1

Chipping Sparrow – 1

 Daily ET = 44 species

Summer Season Banding Total = 260

YTD Banding Total = 2500

 I’ve attached 3 pictures I took today. One is on the backside of a juvenile bluebird. The really weird one was an adult Swainson’s Thrush undergoing a complete moult. The one with the black is the HY male Scarlet Tanager.


Adult Swainson's Thrush going through a complete moult. -M. Timpf

This raises an interesting question: normally this species does not breed in our area and, usually, adult passerines undergo a complete moult (that includes flight feathers) in the breeding area. So…did this bird breed in the area or did it migrate to our area and then stop to moult before carrying on?







1 thought on “August 16th – Banding Update

  1. SWTH is a molt migrant. Just as NAWA, TEWA, and many others. They leave the boreal forest late July and come south to molt. We’ve banded over 10 SWTH since August 1st at McGill Bird Observatory, all molt migrants.

    Have a good day,


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