May 25th – Whew! Another Hot One

Yellow-billed Cuckoos have shown up only in the last couple of days.

Man, it was already 21 degrees at opening time (5:15) and it just went up from there until it had reached the high 20’s/low 30’s by the afternoon. Summer weather. And Summer birds….almost. We did catch and band 1 Wilson’s Warbler
and 1 Gray-cheeked Thrush, two species with still many kilometers to go yet, but these were the only birds around that I would consider to be ongoing “migrants”.

Grey-cheeked Thrush - a favourite of mine.

I was particularly pleased to get the Gray-cheeked Thrush. And I’m not sure why. I think it has a little to do with the almost mystic vision I get of their long-distance migration, an enormous feat that can take some of them from the Yukon or Alaska all the way to the jungles of South America. There is some research to suggest that these western-nesting birds actually fly southeast in the Fall (to our area) before turning south. Is the bird we caught today (an ASY bird – ‘4’ fat, 38 g.) on its way to the NW? Where will it finally end up? But no matter how you look at it, this is an amazing bird!

SY male Orchard Oriole - note the greenish yellow plumage and the black "bib".

So, we have one week of Spring banding left – we finish on Friday, June 1st. (It’s hard to believe it’s drawing down!)
What will this week hold? Loretta Mousseau just passed on this tantalizing tidbit that certainly gets one wondering:

Hi Rick
I’ll bet anything wanting to move north is hopping on this train!


The train is at the station, let’s see what it brings.

Wing feather detail of a SY male Orchard Oriole.

Banded 28:
1 Mourning Dove
1 Yellow-billed Cuckoo
2 Traill’s Flycatcher
1 Great Crested Flycatcher
1 Tree Swallow
1 Gray-cheeked Thrush
1 Gray Catbird
2 Yellow Warblers
1 Wilson’s Warbler
3 Indigo Buntings
1 Song Sparrow
2 Brown-headed Cowbirds
1 Baltimore Oriole
2 Orchard Orioles
8 American Goldfinches

ET’s: 58 spp.

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