The last regular session of MAPS work took place on August 4 in very warm and humid weather. A total of 13 birds were banded with 2 intra-season recaps. New species was American Kestrel.

It was not the temperature as much as the humidity that led to the heat index in the later hours (5 and 6) increasing to the point that net checks were made every 15 minutes.

There was quite a bit of meadowlark activity throughout the day with birds observed airborne and also several contact calls heard. A meadow net (8) continued to be productive with two unbanded Eastern Meadowlarks found at the 2 hour in panel 1.

American Kestrel Eyeing the Nets?Photo by Tom Klotzbach

American Kestrel Eyeing the Nets?
Photo by Tom Klotzbach

An AHY male American Kestrel was captured in the same net, and there was a female flying nearby.  Increased AMKE activity has been noted during the last two weeks and on August 5, an AHY male American Kestrel was found ~1.5 miles from the MAPS station along a roadway unable to fly, the probable result of being clipped by a car (the bird was taken to a wildlife rehabilitator and has soft-tissue damage but no broken bones).

American KestrelPhoto by Tom Klotzbach

American Kestrel
Photo by Tom Klotzbach

Several Northern Mockingbirds feasted on Red Osier Dogwood (Cornus sericea) fruit on the west side of Net 7, with several of these birds coming within 18 inches of the net. Killdeer were plentiful in the plowed field (formerly a meadow) to the north of Net 8. A hatch-year Wood Thrush was found in Net 2 and banded. Later at hour 5, an Eastern Meadowlark banded on July 29 was re-captured in panel 2 of Net 11. This bird was perhaps one that was hatched in the nearby nest.

Hatch-year Eastern Meadowlark RecapturePhoto by Tom Klotzbach

Hatch-year Eastern Meadowlark Recapture
Photo by Tom Klotzbach

On Wednesday, August 8 Nets 4 and 5 in the South Meadow were opened to make up for missed effort this period. As expected, no birds were banded. The woods are growing quieter as fledging birds leave the area – a solitary Gray Catbird was heard, where two weeks ago several catbirds were mewing. Eastern Meadowlarks were on the move again, with two groups of 3-4 flying over and more heard off in the South Meadow. A male and female AHY American Kestrel were perched in some pines close to the location of Net 8 – perhaps the same male that was banded on Saturday, August 4.

Thank you very much to Gary and Marian for braving the warm day on Saturday and to Shelby for net setup!   Tom Klotzbach