October 6th-10th: Getting Back On Track

Turkey Vulture taking in the sun. -KMP

My apologies…but I’ve been pretty rushed over the past several days and something had to give….the blog. But here’s recap of the last few days with pictures to go with it.
October 6th; Ruthven Park:
We got a bit later start due to some early rain. The rain caused a fallout of Pipits, many of whom chose to stay home in bed…and miss a pretty good morning.
Banded 42:
1 Mourning Dove
1 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
1 Eastern Phoebe
3 Golden-crowned Kinglets
7 Ruby-crowned Kinglets
1 Gray Catbird
1 Red-eyed Vireo
1 Tennessee Warbler
1 Nashville Warbler
1 Magnolia Warbler
1 Song Sparrow
2 Swamp Sparrows
16 White-throated Sparrows
5 American Goldfinches

ET’s: 42 spp.

October 7th; Ruthven Park:
We had rain during the night starting around 4 AM. This resulted in a fallout of a different sort as we had some pretty interesting birds. We banded 2 Blackpoll Warblers that were carrying BIG fat loads and weighed in at 18.4 and 20.4 g respectively – well over their fat-free weight of about 10 g. I think these particular birds were into a very long-distance flight (maybe all the way to South America) when they ran into the rain and came to ground.
Banded 61:
1 Eastern Phoebe
3 Golden-crowned Kinglets
6 Ruby-crowned Kinglets
1 Gray-cheeked Thrush
1 Hermit Thrush
1 American Robin
1 Gray Catbird
6 Cedar Waxwings
1 Red-eyed Vireo
1 Tennessee Warbler
1 Magnolia Warbler

Male Black-throated Blue Warbler. -DOL

1 Black-throated Blue Warbler
11 Myrtle Warblers

This Blackpoll Warbler weighed 20.4 grams! -DOL

2 Blackpoll Warblers
1 Indigo Bunting
1 Chipping Sparrow
1 Field Sparrow
1 Swamp Sparrow
12 White-throated Sparrows
8 American Goldfinches

ET’s: 42 spp.

October 7; Fern Hill Burlington:
Hi Rick,
We had really nice day at our school with a nice variety of birds for the students during morning, recess, and throughout my Field Studies classes.

Katherine’s feather collection. The wispy one is from her boa….. -KAP

We banded 9 birds of 6 species:
1 American Goldfinch

Brown Creeper. -KAP

1 Brown Creeper
1 House Wren

White-throated Sparrow. -KAP

2 White-throated Sparrow
3 Song Sparrow

Blackpoll Warbler –KAP

1 Blackpoll Warbler

We recaptured 1 Song Sparrow. Between net rounds and throughout the afternoon, the students chose locations for, and worked on planting our winterberry, summersweet, chokeberry, and spicebushes we are planting around the Field Station and close to the nets

October 8th; Ruthven Park:
Once all of the nets are opened (a half hour before sunrise) we start the paperwork and the tallying of our observations (both by sight and sound) throughout the morning. The first net round is always exciting with an anticipation of a busy day and today’s first round had a nice mix of large and small species. The business of net rounds may continue throughout the morning or after the first couple of net rounds the number of birds handled may diminish. We handled a total of 55 birds today that included the first Eastern Towhee’s banded for the season. There was a retrap Red-eyed Vireo that weighed 18.7 grams when it was banded on September 29th. Today, with a fat score of 5, it weighed 24.5 grams!

Banded 47
1 Yellow-bellied Sapsucker
1 Tufted Titmouse
1 Brown Creeper
1 Golden-crowned Kinglet
3 Ruby-crowned Kinglet
4 Hermit Thrush
2 Gray Catbird
1 Cedar Waxwing
1 Blue-headed Vireo
1 Tennessee Warbler
9 Yellow-rumped Warbler
1 Blackpoll Warbler
1 Common Yellowthroat

Male (left) and female Eastern Towhees – uncommon at Ruthven. -NRF

2 Eastern Towhees
2 Song Sparrow
1 Swamp Sparrow

Brilliant White-throated Sparrow. -KMP

9 White-throated Sparrow
6 American Goldfinch

ET’s: 38 species


October 8th; Fern Hill Oakville:
We had a pretty slow day. Interestingly, we did not see/hear ANY Ruby-crowned Kinglets, Myrtle Warblers, or White-throated Sparrows – common migrants at this time of year. Our only consolation was the banding of a Dark-eyed Junco – which Ruthven hasn’t seen yet. Oh…and we tagged a Monarch Butterfly; their numbers have really thinned out.
Banded 9:
1 Downy Woodpecker
1 Hermit Thrush
1 American Robin
5 Song Sparrows

Dark-eyed Junco. -KAP

1 Dark-eyed Junco

ET’s: 21 spp.

October 9th – Ruthven Park
The gorgeous fall weather continues …. Early morning temperatures are still cool and this morning there was a light frost and the fingers felt a little numb after opening. Temperatures quickly changed and it warmed up once the sun cleared the horizon. The first net round was productive, with small hits of White-throated Sparrows and then, it was pretty quiet with the sunny / clear / warm weather.

Banded 28
1 Yellow-shafted Flicker
1 Winter Wren
1 Golden-crowned Kinglet
1 Hermit Thrush
1 American Robin
1 Gray Catbird
1 Chipping Sparrow
5 Song Sparrow
2 Swamp Sparrow
14 White-throated Sparrow

ET’s: 44 species

October 9th; Fern Hill Oakville:
Beautiful weather but, again, not many birds and NO White-throated Sparrows, kinglets, or Myrtle Warblers. We did get a Blackpoll Warbler that weighed in at 18.4 g. and we tagged 5 more Monarchs.
Banded 6:
1 American Robin
1 Blackpoll Warbler
1 House Finch
3 Song Sparrows

ET’s: 23 spp.

October 10th; Ruthven Park:

Only half of the first round this morning. We netted 59 birds on that go alone. -MMG

We had a Big Day despite the weather – which was just beautiful. Must have been a lot of birds on the move last night as the place was hopping at first light. We netter 59 birds in the first net round! And had birds in everynet – we termed this as “hitting for the cycle” – a baseball term.
We finished the day off with an apple pie…a nice finish to an excellent morning.

Our Flock of Seven is still on the go and very nonchalant about sharing the place with us….except for Karen. -CAJ

Karen claims that the Flock of Seven “charged” at her this morning. -KMP

Banded 101:
1 Black-capped Chickadee
3 Winter Wrens
1 Golden-crowned Kinglet
10 Ruby-crowned Kinglet
6 Hermit Thrushes
5 American Robins
2 Gray Catbirds

Brown Thrasher with a bill anomaly. -MMG

Another look. -MMG

1 Brown Thrasher
2 Blue-headed Vireos
1 Red-eyed Vireo
7 Myrtle Warblers
2 Common Yellowthroats
6 Chipping Sparrows
4 Field Sparrows
10 Song Sparrows

Lincoln’s Sparrow. -KMP

1 Lincoln’s Sparrow
3 Swamp Sparrows
31 White-throated Sparrows
5 American Goldfinches

This Red-tailed Hawk hung around the grounds for an hour or so this morning. Didn’t seem too concerned about us. -KMP

ET’s: 48 spp.

Karen’s Kreeping Korner:

The Butterfly Hunters. -ELO

Tagged Monarch. -ELO

Painted Lady. -ELO

Common Eastern Bumblebee. -KMP

Giant Leopard Moth caterpillar. -KMP

Banded Garden Spider. -ELO


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