At least we’re getting some exercise . . .

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Friday August 22, 2014:  9 new birds of 6 species,  4 recaps.  No new species.  Bird of the day was Common Yellowthroat with 3  new bands.

The summer doldrums continue as we count down the last days of August.  The Yellow Warblers are gone, the local birds have all learned where the nets are, and there are very few migrants moving through.  A pretty Black-and-white Warbler brightened the day.




Thursday August 21, 2014   10 new of five species and 7 recaps.

At sunrise we experienced a humid, muggy and windless morning that was very quiet bird wise.  The overcast skies gave way to sun and then rain appeared on radar.  We managed to stay dry even though there were sporadic rain showers popping up around us.  Most net checks yielded only a bird or two – mostly hatching year local birds so we gained some experience using the new protocols.  Most numerous species was Gray Catbird (5) followed by Common Yellowthroat (2).    Two visitors arrived just in time to see the last birds of the day processed.

Downy Woodpecker Photo by Jon Dombrowski

Downy Woodpecker
Photo by Jon Dombrowski

Hooded Warbler

Hooded Warbler, Male

Hooded Warbler

Hooded Warbler

(The Hooded Warbler was aged U because of conflicting clues and a lack of consensus on skulling by three banders.  I left to close nets before it was released. But now looking at the retrices in the first photo I think it is a HY bird.)

Jon Dombrowski

Handsome Adult Male American Redstart Makes the Day!

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Wednesday August 20, 2014  6 new and 5 recaps

We had nets full of mosquitoes, and if we were lucky, we had a bird in a net!

Adult male American Redstart Photo by Peggy Keller

Adult male American Redstart
Photo by Peggy Keller


We had a morning chat with Ryan and all is well in Vermont.

We closed up after our six hours, just before the rain started.

Peggy Keller

4 New Species!

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Tuesday, August 19: 21 new birds of 15 species, 7 recaps.  New species:  Hermit Thrush, Ovenbird, Magnolia Warbler, Bay-breasted Warbler.  Bird of the day:  Gray Catbird with 5 new bands.  35 species detected onsite today.

The continuing slow pace gave us the opportunity to spend more time outside compiling our list of daily bird observations.  We were thrilled to see a young Bald Eagle skim the treeline behind the boathouse, Tom and Andrea did their best to identify swallows on the wing, and we all had a devil of a time deciding how many Pewees we were actually hearing.

Banding excitement came from our 4 new species – the Hermit Thrush and Bay-breasted Warbler were particularly neat.

After-hatch year female Hermit Thrush.  This bird had a brood patch!

After-hatch year female Hermit Thrush. This bird had a brood patch!

Northern Waterthrush, Canada, Mourning, & Yellow Warblers Today

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Mourning Warbler Banded Today Photo by Marian Klik

Mourning Warbler Banded Today
Photo by Marian Klik


Monday, August 18, 2014 25 new birds; 9 recaps.

 We started out the day with nice weather, cool and dry.

A third grade teacher guest came in looking into an educational possibility for her class as well as a mother with two boys visiting from the Greece school district.

Terry and Willie hobbled in with a boot on one of their feet from injuries sustained at home and are restricted to scribing for us for several weeks. Andrea, Peggy and Marian ran the net lanes for birds.

The net lanes have been trimmed with a weed whacker but walking lanes are beginning to fill in.

All 32 nets were open for the six hours and birds came in steadily with lots of variety. The typical Gray Catbirds, Song sparrows, Yellow warblers and Black-capped Chickadees were there but a Downy woodpecker, Canada warbler, Northern Waterthrush and Mourning warbler made their welcome appearance.

We scrambled to coax a Green Heron in the driveway into a net but we were unsuccessful. We recorded data on nine recaps. Several others were recaptured and released because of the new release policy for hatch year birds.

Marian Klik

Two Banders Handle the Day

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Sunday, August 17:  24 new birds of 13 species, 15 recaps.  New species:  Ruby-throated Hummingbird.Bird of the day:  a tie between Gray Catbird and Northern Waterthrush!  20 species detected on the study site.

We had a skeleton crew this morning, but the two veteran volunteers were enough on this very slow day.   Since Erin was on hand, we were able to band any hummingbirds in our nets and today we were lucky enough to catch two of them – both older females.  Other highlights included four Waterthrushes and two Eastern Phoebes.

Hatch Year Male Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Hatch Year Male Ruby-throated Hummingbird

This photo is not one of today’s birds, but it’s so gorgeous it bears sharing again!


Opening Day!

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Saturday, August 16 2014:  19 new birds of 8 species, 9 recaps.  Bird of the day was Gray Catbird with 7 new bands.

Hurray!  It’s fall!  A great crew came out to help open the 2014 fall season at BBBO and . . . as expected . . . it was pretty slow!

Fall banding has officially been underway since July 20 (Yellow Warblers start early!), but today was the start of our intensive daily banding season.  In the pre-season, we banded a remarkable 40 species of birds (see the post titled “Fall Pre-season Banding”), and we did not add any new species today.

This fall, our station will be adding point counts and daily observations to our dataset.  Monitoring birds in these alternate ways gives a better number of the numbers of birds, and the numbers of species, actually using our study site during migration.  While the point counts won’t start for a few weeks, we were casually recording birds we saw and heard today.  Overall, 18 species of birds were detected at the station.  We would love for birders (new and experienced!) to come out and help us keep track of our daily bird lists.

Thanks to Chita, Maggie and our Teen Banders for making opening day a success.

Bird of the Day - Gray Catbird.

Bird of the Day – Gray Catbird.

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