May 15th – April Showers Bring….Hold It!…This is May

Redbud in bloom - a ray of sunshine in an otherwise dreary day.

I was awoken in the middle of the night by the sound of the wind howling through the trees and the falling of rain on the roof. So I slept in a little but did manage to get to the banding lab by 6:00. The weather was lousy: cold (and getting colder); windy (gusts over 60 km/hr); and wet (7.5 mm. of rain had fallen since yesterday at noon and a light to heavy drizzle was coming down – and continued to come down all morning…until it turned to actual rain). There was no point in even thinking about opening the nets so I set out the ground traps and baited them to see what might happen. As it turns out, Marylene and I were relatively busy handling 50 birds out of the traps. Plus I squeezed in a census during periods of heavy drizzle – not much to report other than a pair of adult Bald Eagles.

Marylene took 5 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks out of one trap (good for us; not so good for her fingers). Three were SY males – one had been banded last year as a Juvenile – and two were females. Makes you wonder if the retrap had lead the others back to this spot….

Banded 15:
2 Mourning Doves
4 Eastern Bluebirds (nestlings from a box across the highway at the old barn)
5 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks
1 Red-winged Blackbird
2 Common Grackles
1 American Goldfinches

Retrapped 35:
1 Mourning Dove
1 Northern Cardinal
2 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks
1 Indigo Bunting
1 American Tree Sparrow
14 Chipping Sparrows
3 Field Sparrows
1 Eastern White-crowned Sparrow
1 Red-winged Blackbird
7 Brown-headed Cowbirds
1 Baltimore Oriole
2 American Goldfinches

ET’s: 46 spp.


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