October 24th – Movin’ On

Early morning sentinels – our group of 3 Sandhill Cranes. -DOL

It was another gorgeous Fall(?) day: minimal wind, warm (some might say hot) temperatures, and cloudless blue skies. But the number of birds was greatly reduced. I was becoming accustomed to large numbers of sparrows along the edges and kinglets and Myrtle Warblers in the willows but their….well, not absence, but reduction…was quite noticeable. And it makes sense; last night there were light northerly winds, cool temperatures and clear skies – ideal for migration and I’m pretty sure many of the birds that were here left. And they were ready to go. Most of the migrants that we’ve handled over the past several days have had sizeable fat loads resulting in significant weights. For example, the 20 Eastern White-crowned Sparrows we banded between the 21st and 23rd had an average weight of 32.3 g., well above their fat-free weight. The 3 birds that we got this morning (2 retraps – juveniles – and a new adult) weighed an average of 28.1 g. So it didn’t come as much of a surprise; the birds had been putting on fat and waiting for ideal conditions, which they got last night and they moved on. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it, where they might have ended up this morning….

This Tufted Titmouse was easily the highlight of the day – not a rare but certainly an uncommon visitor to the site. -DOL

We still had a satisfying day, sitting at the picnic table basking in the sun. We banded 26:
1 Hairy Woodpecker
2 Black-capped Chickadees
1 Tufted Titmouse
2 Golden-crowned Kinglets
2 Ruby-crowned Kinglets
1 Hermit Thrus1 Purple Finch
3 American Goldfinches
1 Eastern White-crowned Sparrow
3 White-throated Sparrows
5 Song Sparrows
1 Swamp Sparrow
2 Myrtle Warblers
1 Northern Cardinal
ET’s: 29 spp.

It was a pleasure to have Roswitha, a long-time volunteer at the HBO Rock Point Station, join me to do the scribing. -DOL


2 thoughts on “October 24th – Movin’ On

  1. How much territory they cover in a night, does make me wonder. When can we put the go pros on them?

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