Sunday, November 1, 2009

Hermit Thrushes Return

The morning was looking very promising for bird captures as calls were being heard as soon as we got outside at 5 AM. The dawn chorus was very strong with birds calling on both sides of the river nearly non-stop. Even our first run at 6 AM was good with 5 birds netted.

Then, right after 7AM, all activity halted. Maybe the encroaching cold front played a part as clouds slid in overhead. We caught no birds after 7:30. There was a Cooper's Hawk gliding past the net lanes but other than that no visible signs of predators. The birds just disappeared.

The day was not a total loss. We did band 3 Hermit Thrushes. Last year we did not get a Hermit Thrush until the first week of December.

Hermit Thrush

One more, with feeling: "Tail, tail, tail!". More than one of us was thinking Swainson's Thrush in the predawn light until we turned it around. The reddish tail always gives the Hermit away.

Hermit Thrush

Up and down the river was the sound of Eastern Pheobes. This one was teasing us by sitting on the tree about 15 feet from net 3. Never went in the net.

Eastern Pheobe

Red-bellied Woodpeckers made their undulating flights around the area, as always.

Red-bellied Woodpecker

Once the place went quiet we settled in to study the other sights of Nature. In one net was a dragonfly, ID'd by friend Paul Hueber as a Blue-faced Darner.

Blue-faced Darner

Not in any net was one of the many White Peacock butterflies.

White Peacock

Along the trail is a nice Common Nightshade plant.

Common Nightshade

A bit further down, the Primrose Willow is still blooming.

Primrose Willow

Always something interesting at Lake Lotus!
Next Banding Day: Sunday, November 8th.

We will open nets by 6:15 A.M.

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