Despite a busy set of radar images suggesting that birds are on their way, it was pretty quiet on the ground today. There were no animal sounds while setting nets. Not even frogs. However, Andrew captured our first bird while opening Net 16. A feisty (and stinky) red morph Eastern Screech Owl. Need to order new size 5 bands since we seem to be catching more of these little owls lately.
Our last couple of Screech Owls captured were rather sluggish upon release. This bird was super alert, tuning into every sound in the woods and flew off after a gentle push into the air. It flew towards Net 2 but perched on some branches instead of being trapped again. Maria got a shot of it resting before heading off again.
This is the 3rd week in a row that we have captured 5 Carolina Wrens. Most of them juveniles and some are the same birds we banded back in early August but there are adults being caught, too. This is one of the juveniles told by the buffer brown eye bow and missing spots on the wings.
All sorts discarded items appear after heavy rains. We found a cassette tape in the area we know a Porsche was chopped long ago since we have found a lot of the ancillary pieces left over. What were you listening to in 1985?
It could be a migrant of a secretive resident. Either way, it is nice to have a female Common Yellowthroat at Net 21.
One of our adult Carolina Wrens was originally banded over 3 years ago as a juvenile. As Chris said, "Good data!".
Nets 16 & 17 saw most of the action today and the crew found a Veery in Net 16.
Veerys and other thrushes show tan edges on their coverts during their first year, making this a juvenile bird. The feather become a continuous brown once they get their adult molt the following year.
Banders become birders the moment it is slow. One of the best spots to search this time of year is the marsh at the edge of the lake.
During this search, the gang spied a Prothonotary Warbler in the distance. Wonder if it was one we have banded in the past?
Foraging in the branches was another Carolina Wren sporting a band from an earlier encounter.
We did find a Prairie Warbler in the area today but Chris got a great shot of one on his trip out to Lake Apopka later in the morning.
A couple of Cardinals and a Blue-gray Gnatcatcher were also captured today. Unfortunately, the camera battery ran out of power before those close-ups could happen.
We are nearing migration peak in a couple weeks. Now it is all up to the weather.
Next (planned) Banding Day: Sunday, September 18th.
All nets will be opened by 6:40 A.M.