May 18th – Quality Not Quantity

A “skulker” – this Canada Warbler works its way through a juniper. -LI

We weren’t particularly busy today, or, at least, it didn’t “feel” busy. But if you put in the work there were birds to be found. In fact, by the end of the morning we had rung up 79 species. But many of these were in small numbers or were singles. Still, a species is a species and when you’re counting every one adds up. The relaxed pace was ideal for teaching the younger aficionados the skills of extracting and banding and we had a good number of skilled adults to oversee their efforts – so a good morning all round.

Caught on hidden camera, wood pixies frolic in the meadow. -AT

The other day Carol left some feathers for the Tree Swallows so we went out to entice them. What fun! The swallows swoop in to snatch them out of the air. They’ll chase each other until one drops the feather at which point another will tear in to grab it before it can hit the ground. Tree Swallows line their nests with feathers. Over the years we have seen a very strange assortment of them in various nests and they’ve left us scratching our heads as to what kinds of birds they have come from and how the swallows managed to get them.

Throwing caution….and feathers….to the wind. Nesting material for the Tree Swallows. -AT

Banded 44:
1 Mourning Dove

Nola with a Downy Woodpecker she’s just processed. -ELO

1 Downy Woodpecker
1 Yellow-bellied Flycatcher

Usually a bird of the treetops: Great Crested Flycatcher. -ELO

1 Great Crested Flycatcher
1 House Wren
1 Swainson’s Thrush
1 American Robin
3 Gray Catbirds

Brown Thrasher. -MAS

1 Brown Thrasher
2 Warbling Vireo
1 Nashville Warbler

For comparison: female Yellow Warbler on the left, male on the right. -ELO

10 Yellow Warblers
1 Magnolia Warbler

ASY male American Redstart. -JWC

1 American Redstart
2 Common Yellowthroat
6 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks (bringing our total to 70; old record was 61)
1 Song Sparrow
1 White-throated Sparrow

Another “stumpy” – a young male Red-winged Blackbird missing its left foot. The bird was otherwise in good shape. -MAS

2 Red-winged Blackbirds
4 Baltimore Orioles (bringing our total to 93; old record was 51)
2 American Goldfinches

ET’s: 79 spp.
More Pictures:

“Liam, if you hold this Rose-breasted Grosbeak right……no pain. If you do it wrong…..pain…..great pain” -JET

No pain! -JET

Female Red-winged Blackbird in the meadow. -AT

Female Blue-winged Warbler with an aberrant black feather on its head. -ELO

Grey head, white eye ring, yellow underneath…..Nashville Warbler. -ELO

Female Red-bellied Woodpecker. -ELO

Striking male Ruby-throated Hummingbird (well named!). -ELO

Tufted Titmouse. -ELO

Male Magnolia Warbler. -JWC

We have a good population of Yellow-throated Vireos nesting around the site. -JET

Male Chestnut-sided Warbler. -JWC


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