September 10th – There’s A Difference!

When the mosquitoes are swarming and one doesn’t have a bug net…..-DOL

Liam was out bright and early Sunday morning; in fact, he had the nets opened before I even got there shortly before 7:00. You gotta love youthful zeal! And this zeal was rewarded: we banded 63 birds of 13 species, one of our highest totals at the Farm. And it shows (or at least I think it shows – it’s not just a coincidence) that the prairie grass meadow is starting to pay off….for both birds and insects. There was a lot of movement of birds between the meadow and the forest/wetland edge – in both directions. There’s now a LOT of food in the meadow, it’s no longer a soybean desert. This activity was quite noticeable and both Liam and I agreed that we had never seen this level of activity at the Farm before. We’re pretty certain there’s a connection. The brush piles along the edge, made up of the buckthorn that was cut down in the Spring, help a lot too. We can move birds on the edge along toward nets by walking slowly toward them and flushing them from their brush pile hiding places.

Appropriately, a Calligrapher Fly checks out the calligraphy in the log book. -KMP

And it’s not just birds that seem to be benefiting. Karen spent a lot of time roving along the meadow edge and noted (numerous times) that there seemed to be more butterflies and other sorts of insects about (besides mosquitoes – which the Summer rains have produced in droves). It would be interesting to have an “insect person” do an inventory of the field and environs. Anyone out there interested?
We ended up banding 63 birds:
2 Eastern Wood Pewees
6 Red-eyed Vireos
1 Black-capped Chickadee
4 House Wrens
1 Carolina Wren
3 Gray Catbirds
1 Swainson’s Thrush
21 Song Sparrows
8 Swamp Sparrows
1 Nashville Warbler
6 Common Yellowthroats
2 Magnolia Warblers
7 Indigo Buntings

One of 7 juvenile Indigo Buntings banded today. -KMP

ET’s: 42 spp.

Some of Karen’s Pics:

Black-throated Green Warbler -KMP

Crescent Butterfly -KMP

Least Skipper -KMP

Monarch -KMP

Red Admiral -KMP

Crackling Forest Grasshopper -KMP

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