Time for our annual all-weekend banding stint. Typically, this is the weekend the dam bursts and the bird flood in. Peak migration. For the first time in memory, this did not happen.
A front draped itself across the northern Gulf stretching to the Atlantic. Not a huge amount of storm energy but enough to close the door our peak birds use on their ways south. Birds in motion now are using the route through Texas.
However, we did capture some birds that made it through. One of the species returning right on time is the House Wren. We started catching them on Saturday.
We have been hearing Brown Thrashers for weeks but they have been able to avoid the nets. Until now. We recaptured this bird that we first banded last year.
Common Yellowthroats are still in the area but not much of anything is flying this weekend. We captured a few over the weekend.
Surprise of the day was catching another young Painted Bunting in the same spot we caught an even younger bird a couple weeks ago. There must be a nesting pair right around us somewhere.
Sunday was just about as quiet as Saturday. We were joined by Nancy and Bill LaFramboise who wanted to check out out operation. Nancy recently acquired her banding permit and will be starting a station in Stuart, FL. we let her sit in for a few birds and we provided information about birds we have discovered over the years.
We captured another young male Cardinal.
This bird was undergoing a tail molt which you can see nicely in this shot.
As we were trying to figure out what was flying up in the oaks at one point, a Gnatcatcher basically fell into the net in front of us.
A nice female American Redstart joined us for a short visit. Looks like she could use some fresh tail feathers.
The White-eyed Vireo we caught was a very young bird. It loved to nip. Here is a little behind the scenes view of our typical photo sessions.
And here is the view from the other camera.
Still collecting Ovenbirds throughout the morning.
The day ended with a Swainson's Thrush, most of which have been down in net 8 which is located in the pine area of the lanes.
We will watch a slow moving front this week and hope that it clears enough to allow better migration traffic for next weekend.
Next (planned) Banding Day: Saturday, October 7th.
All nets will be opened by 6:50 A.M.