Thursday, May 6, 2010

May 1st, 2nd

In spite of a dire weather forecast, Saturday proved to be ideal for banding, with overcast skies and light southerly least until a thunderstorm struck mid-morning. There was lots of birdsong, and a number of new species were added to my year list. I'm still lagging behind Brett, who is at 180 species for 2010, but I have at least crossed the 100 mark at last. By Sunday, I'd reached a meagre 115. On the other hand, I have a job, so "twitching" for the list is not much of an option!

The first Yellow Warblers of the season made their appearance, with seven new ones banded, and three retraps from prior years, two from May 24th 2008, and one fom May 30th 2009. The weather again caused early closing on Sunday, with the arrival of rain showers around 9:30am, just as things looked like they could get interesting. All in all, a little disappointing numbers wise, but clearly, migration is now underway in this area, with both numbers and species diversity increasing. The final weekend total was 27 birds of 12 species:

American Goldfinch 2
American Robin 1
Black-capped Chickadee 1
Brown-headed Cowbird 1
Hermit Thrush 1
House Wren 1
Myrtle Warbler 2
Red-winged Blackbird 6
Ruby-crowned Kinglet 1
Swamp Sparrow 1
White-throated Sparrow 3
Yellow Warbler 7

This week's picture is in honour of my good friend Peter Fearon. Between us, we came up with many corrupted bird names, just for the fun of it. Many, wellactually most, cannot be repeated here, but Peter, here's a "Helmet Thrush" just for old time's sake. Thanks once more to Georg Hentsch for photographs (and post banding beer!!).

There will be one more update after this weekend, before Grace and I disappear on our holidays, visting Poland, Spain and England.....volcano permitting!