May 9th – Still Waiting

Priestley with a lovely male Baltimore Oriole she’ just banded. -DOL

Another beautiful, cool morning. I’ve been finding that the warblers don’t begin to get going until the temperature goes up. And when it did today, there was a fair amount of flitting through the trees but…all the warblers I was seeing were of the “early” variety: Yellow, Myrtle and Palm Warblers. I’m waiting for the bonanza of the long-distance variety, Magnolias, Blackburnians, Blackpolls, Bay-breasted, etc. I have found that their presence tends to coincide with the presence of mosquitoes – those little winged meatballs that fuel their travels. It’s sort of a tradeoff; the wonder of these little migrants vs the aggravation of bothersome insects. Small price to pay I think.

A real highlight of the morning was seeing a furtive Virginia Rail just 3 meters away as it picked its way through the reeds at the edge of the pond. I’m wondering if this bird will nest here – it’s been present for a week now.

Banded 31:
1 Red-bellied woodpecker
3 Blue Jays
2 Tree Swallows
1 Gray Catbird
1 Savannah Sparrow

Savannah Sparrow. This bird was carrying a lot of fat – it wasn’t a local breeder, it still had a long way to go.

1 Lincoln’s Sparrow
2 Swamp Sparrows
2 Baltimore Orioles
2 Red-winged Blackbirds
2 Brown-headed Cowbirds
2 Common Yellowthroats
2 Yellow Warblers
6 Western Palm Warblers
4 Myrtle Warblers

ET’s: 41 spp.

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