May 10th – a Cold Northern Wind

The almost full moon was going down in the West and the sun was a ways from rising and the wind? The wind was blowing at Force 3-4 out of the northwest – probably the worst direction it could come from in terms of the orientation of our nets. I opened most of them anyway in the hope that I would get something and also baited all the ground traps. The nets were billowing making them quite obvious to the birds…well, to the smarter birds. I have to say that there were a few dumber ones around…thank goodness. The “catch” was not spectacular; in fact, it was barely mediocre – especially for this time of year. There were a couple of ‘new’ birds around though: Peter Thoem picked up a Red-eyed Vireo on census and I had a singing Carolina Wren. A late Common Loon went by – heading northwest, right into the wind. I would have thought it could have picked a better day as it seemed to be labouring. When you gotta go, you gotta go, I guess.

The feeders (and traps below them) were busy as there were very few insects around. The Rose-breasted Grosbeaks were taking full advantage of our largesse – I banded 7 and retrapped 6; my fingers got quite a going over! They were about half and half: traps to nets.

And what’s with the Pine Siskins!? Some Winters we don’t see any. This year there were quite a few around but….don’t you think they should have returned North by now? There were at least 15 at Ruthven again today. I guess they just want to see what neotropical migrants look like…

Banded 28:
1 House Wren
2 Wood Thrushes
1 Gray Catbird
1 Nashville Warbler
4 Yellow Warblers
1 Magnolia Warbler
1 Yellow-rumped Warbler
7 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks
4 Chipping Sparrows
1 Eastern White-crowned Sparrow
3 Pine Siskins
2 American Goldfinches

Retrapped 19:
1 Downy Woodpecker
1 Eastern Tufted Titmouse
1 Ruby-crowned Kinglet (a male; has been around for about 2 weeks – odd; but in good shape)
1 Golden-winged Warbler (yesterday’s female)
6 Rose-breasted Grosbeaks
3 Chipping Sparrows
2 Red-winged Blackbirds
1 Brown-headed Cowbird
1 Baltimore Oriole (originally banded as a SY bird in May 2004 – so 6 years old)
1 Pine Siskin
1 American Goldfinch

ET’s: 59 spp.


One thought on “May 10th – a Cold Northern Wind

  1. I forgot to mention that there was a small flock of 7 male Indigo Buntings feeding on the ground around the traps in front of the Mansion. But never in the traps….Very beautiful!

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