September 16th – The Cold Makes Things Heat Up

Visiting Yorkshiremen (and women): Len Cusworth, Freda Wright, Jean Cusworth, Clive Wright (l. to r.)

The temperature was truly Svalbardian when I arrived this morning: 2.9 degrees celsius. There was a heavy frost in the low-lying areas, to the point that I had difficulty opening nets 4 and 8X. But there were obviously more birds around and the cold during the night was making them hungry. A conservative estimate of the Cedar Waxwings around the site placed their number at 150. They were going after either the juniper berries in the trees behind the Mansion or the grapes that are found almost everywhere. American Goldfinches also were making their presence felt at the feeders. We caught good numbers of both birds (15 waxwings and 18 goldfinches) which pushed our banding total today to 59. A big improvement over the past several days.

Today marked the return of Eric Bauer.

Long-distance migrants continue to trickle through as well: Gray-cheeked and Swainson’s Thrushes, and 6 species of warblers.

Look carefully - do two sets of bifocals, worn simultaneously, equal "quad-focals"?

We also had a number of visitors so the atmosphere in the banding lab was very congenial – it was a fun place to be. Not to be outdone by Peter Thoem’s innovative approach to data management, new aspiring bander, Rosemary Beaumont came up with an invention of her own to increase visual acuity: “quad-focals”. These are achieved quite simply – put one pair of bifocals directly on top of another and reap the benefits. (And of course we’re not laughing at you…..)
Mac student Birha Zuberi in action

Mac student Birha Zuberi in action.

Banded 59:
4 Mourning Doves
1 House Wren
3 Gray-cheeked Thrushes
2 Swainson’s Thrushes
2 Gray Catbirds
15 Cedar Waxwings
1 Red-eyed Vireo
2 Nashville Warbler
3 Magnolia Warbler
2 Bay-breasted Warblers
2 Blackpoll Warblers
1 Ovenbird
2 Common Yellowthroats
1 Chipping Sparrow
18 American Goldfinches

Retrapped 12:
1 Mourning Dove
1 House Wren
2 Gray-cheeked Thrushes
1 American Robin
1 Common Yellowthroat
1 Chipping Sparrow
1 Song Sparrow
4 American Goldfinches

ET’s: 46 spp

Birds banded per 100 net hours: 41


Leave a Reply