September 13th – Malevolent Leaves

Male Chestnut-sided Warbler in 'basic' plumage. - B. McCreadie

A stiff SW wind blew throughout the night and all morning. When I arrived to open I could see leaves dropping from the trees, silhouetted by the full moon, like big snowflakes. You would think that their final location would be a random one, explained by quantum mechanics or string theory. But you would be wrong. These little suckers are searching for any net that they can throw themselves into. Fortunately, I am aware of their vagaries and, so, I opened only those nets that I figured would be the least accessible to them due to their sheltered location. Today I think I won this little cat and mouse game – I only had to pick out about 500 leaves from the nets I had open. I don’t think I’ll be so lucky in the future. (I can remember Elaine Serena and I taking over an hour to pick out the leaves from just one double net!)

Red-eyed Vireo with a brown eye = young or Hatch Year (HY) bird. - B. McCreadie

It was extremely slow today. We banded only 9 birds; had only 21 species on census; and only 42 species for the day. And none of them were exceptional. Interestingly, Net #2, the double net by the parking lot feeder complex, and which is easily our ‘best’ net in terms of numbers captured, has only caught 2 birds in the past 2 days. We need a change in the weather! A cold front to move through, pushing birds down out of the north. My understanding is that this will happen Wednesday evening, bringing with it colder temperatures. I certainly hope so.

Banded 9:
1 Black-capped Chickadee
1 House Wren
1 Swainson’s Thrush
1 American Robin
1 Red-eyed Vireo
1 Chestnut-sided Warbler
1 Blackpoll Warbler
1 Common Yellowthroat
1 American Goldfinch

Retrapped 7:
3 Black-capped Chickadees
1 Northern Cardinal
1 Common Yellowthroat
1 American Goldfinch

ET’s: 42 spp.

Birds banded per 100 net hours: 14

Pictures from Yesterday:

Stylurus Clubtail on Peter Thoem's shoulder. R. Mueller

The anomolous Rose-breasted Grosbeak. - P. Thoem

Connecticut Warbler banded on September 12th. - P. Thoem

Connecticut Warbler; note the large feet. -P Thoem

And another view. - P. Thoem


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