The 5th Annual Birdapalooza was held this weekend. It was filled with high, steady winds meaning empty nets for us for the most part of 8 hours. THere was a faint hope of attracting American Robins down if we could. They were streaming into the park as we unloaded to set poles and nets before the festival was officially open for the day.
The inflatable Gator was prepared. Open the gates!
A couple of Pileated Woodpeckers made a noisy entrance and Lynn got some close-up shots.
There were a lot of berries around for all the treetop feeders but not too much for the mi-story and lower.
Becki got a bird in the net just after a couple of large groups were stopping by. This female Northern Cardinal was a recapture. We first banded her here at a festival 3 eyars ago as a hatch year bird. Still doing quite well.
Then we settled in for most of the day pacing the net lane and listening to the roar of airboats as they tore up and down the shore scaring up feeding birds throughout the day. Not too good for attracting birds...
Meanwhile, Richard spent much of the day discussing tips for the landscape and about bird boxes that he makes.
The American Robins were taunting us as they continued to swarm just past the northern fence line 30 yards from the table.
At the table, Becki, Killian, Susan, and Christine took turns explaining bird banding to a steady stream of guest while Andrew stalked the nets.
Other than the airboats, a Bluegrass band occasionally burst into song.
Tanka had no trouble make friend no matter while she sat during the day.
Watching American Robins feeding all day made Andrew make an executive decision to move the end net and place it next to the fence in hopes of catching one. It took about 20 minutes but we did manage to capture one Robin which was excitedly brought back to the table for processing.
Hey, two birds for the day is better than one!
It was not a surprise that there would be fewer birds to catch as the festival is moved deeper into Winter. The excessive winds put the cork on for good. Visitor numbers seem to be pretty good but this might be our last Birdapalooza. Especially if the current plans for the park come to pass. THere will be no where for us to set up nets. We shall see.
For now, we head back to Lake Lotus in the morning.
Next (planned) Banding Day: Sunday, January 22nd.
All nets will be opened by 6:50 A.M.