Our first bird of the morning was a male Northern Cardinal. We capture this bird every few weeks. His territory with a female runs directly across where Net 9 is placed and he ends up in the same spot in the net time after time. He is nice and healthy. Maybe we can band some of his brood this year.
A wintering Hermit Thrush is still hanging out near the banding table.
Our first new bird of the day was an adult Gray Catbird.
Up and down the net lanes we are getting many clumps of blooming Innocence (Houstonia procumbens). There is a large patch right under Net 2.
Before the clouds begin to burn off, a Ring-billed Gull circled Lake Lotus in the gray morning. We see a lot of Forster's Terns but few gulls here.
An interesting recapture from Net 16. An Orange-crowned Warbler. This is the first Orange-crowned we have recaptured.
Not far away, a recaptured Swamp Sparrow joined the tally sheet.
Another frequent visitor. We keep catching this same White-eyed Vireo this season. I think we would know it was the same bird by its feisty demeanor even if there were no band on it!
Time to check the lake for any water birds. Not many. Instead, our attention is drawn to the dew collecting in the center of broad, green leaves of the dasheen in the marshy areas.
The various droplet configurations can mesmerize you as you search for the perfect arrangement and direction of light to make them sparkle all the more.
While studying the droplets, another very interesting sight snaps us back into curiosity mode. Out here in this marshy mess is something unexpected. A caterpillar.
Researching (and finally breaking down to check with Mary and Randy) the closest we can come is that this is a species of
Greg gets a Carolina Wren and heads back to the table to process the data.
Our final bird was our other new capture. A young male Ruby-crowned Kinglet. Notice the couple of orange-red feathers in the crown.
We have now had several weeks of mornings where we don't catch the same species twice (except for last week when we had two Catbirds) which makes the mornings more interesting. Not that we wouldn't mind a Sunday full of Yellow-rumped Warblers or Cedar Waxwings...
Next (planned) Banding Day: Sunday, January 20th.
All nets will be opened by 6:50 A.M.
The Great Backyard Bird Count for 2013 is February 15-18th.
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