Wow! What a morning….migrating birds everywhere! We started counting as soon as we got there (8 AM) and didn’t finish until early afternoon. During that time we encountered 52 species. What was particularly notable was the number of waterfowl: 18 species! This included: 1,127 Tundra Swans, over 130 Northern Pintails, and 3 species that are new to Ruthven: Long-tailed Duck, Canvasback, and White-winged Scoter.
As well as waterfowl the usual early migrants were moving in full swing: Killdeer, American Robins, Red-winged Blackbirds, Common Grackles and even the first Eastern Phoebe of the year. Surprisingly, though, Sparrows and finches were few and far between.
April 1st and the start of the Spring migration monitoring season (our 24th) isn’t very far away so between observations we began to put up the nets. We completely replaced Net 2 (it was on its last legs due to UV damage) and put up Nets 5 & 7. We hope to get most of the others done on Tuesday.