April 15th – The Not-So-Majestic Turkey

It was cool, clear, and windless as the sun came up this morning. Fabulous conditions to listen for birds – their songs sound crisp and travel long distances. While enjoying the calls of Song Sparrows, an Eastern Tufted Titmouse, and a Field Sparrow, I could only laugh as the not-so-majestic Wild Turkey decided to chime in. 

The day was made even more pleasant by the visit of Elaine Serena and her friend Margaret. It was great to have the extra help (Elaine is very skilled at extracting birds). The homemade muffins and hot coffee were perks as well. And later in the morning, Dr. Oliver Love (a professor at the University of Windsor and my supervisor for my Master’s project) visited to begin teaching me how to take and store blood samples. By taking this type of sample from the Tree Swallows I am studying, we will be able to study a variety of traits including stress hormones and immune function.

Though the total number of birds handled wasn’t terribly high, it was a good day in terms of banding new birds. Of the 35 individuals caught, only 6 were retraps.

Banded 29:
5 American Goldfinches
1 Ruby-crowned Kinglet
1 Field Sparrow
7 Chipping Sparrows
2 Dark-eyed Juncos
1 Downy Woodpecker
1 Hermit Thrush
2 White-throated Sparrows
1 Song Sparrow
3 Brown-headed Cowbirds
1 Tree Swallow
3 Red-winged Blackbirds
1 Mourning Dove

Retrapped 6:
1 Downy Woodpecker
1 House Finch
1 Black-capped Chickadee
1 Chipping Sparrow
2 Dark-eyed Juncos

ET’s: 35 spp.


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