We aren't used to this kind of weather. The past 2 years have been extremely cold. Last year was super cold with temperatures falling below freezing often, even into late into Winter. This year, we are trending above normal with days this week forecast to hit 80! The trees are all beginning to bloom which will bring in the insects and a transition should be occurring soon as the birds find the insects.
We started off well this morning with 4 recaptures right at dawn. However, things quieted or moved upward into the tree tops as the morning wore on. That quick flurry of birds would be it for the day. Many migrants were still moving overhead. Robins, Goldfinch, and Waxwings traveled in flocks but, like everything else, stayed well above the nets. Still, there was enough to look at today.
Just after sun up, the chilly air reveled the breath of a singing Red-winged Blackbird. They have just begun singing. A welcome sound.
Just beyond the Blackbird a Limpkin settles onto the sandbar after calling since well before sunrise.
It was a bit of a surprise as a Swamp Sparrow jumped up into view near the lake and posed for a few photos as the Sun continued to rise. They are heard more often than seen.
Another bird heard more often than seen are the Common Yellowthroats. They call out every morning but they are rarely seen this time of year while they lurk in the marsh. This female was cruising the river just before it empties into the lake.
Maria brought visitors and found some other creatures along the lanes. like this Lady Beetle that was nicely lit up by the warming light.
One bird that is usually present during the Winter, but difficult to spot at times, is the Yellow-bellied Sapsucker. This female stopped by to work over the snags near the end of the lanes.
Our recaptures included a House Wren, an Ovenbird, a Carolina Wren, and a Northern Cardinal. The latter birds are locals and the former were returning birds. The most often seen bird today was the Barred Owl pair. They often called for one another and joined together before deciding to rest up in the branches above the river by 10 AM. This shot was taken a bit earlier while they were still active.
Insects on the rise. a weak front heading this way Friday. Perfect weather Sunday. Hoping for some good birds next week!
Next (planned) Banding Day: Sunday, January 29th.
All nets will be opened by 6:45 A.M.