Sunday April 18, 2021. 85 new bids of 7 species; 32 recaps. New species: Blue Jay, Golden-crowned Kinglet, Northern Cardinal, and Yellow Palm Warbler. Bird of the day was Black-capped Chickadee with 77 new bands.

The march of the chickadees continued unabated today, with flock after flock making their way east to west down the hedgerow, from the driveway towards Rose’s Marsh. We cautiously opened only 2/3 of our nets at sunrise, and the first three nets runs were relatively quiet. We were encouraged to be able to open the back net lanes but almost as soon as we did so, the maurading hoardes appeared and we were kept busy for the next several hours. They quieted down again shortly before we were set to close – a bit of consideration we appreciated quite a lot.

Yellow Palm Warbler

Although the dee-dees continue to be the big story, we did have a delightful visit from an early Palm Warbler. Palms breed in the boreal forests of Canada, and spend the off-season in Florida and the Gulf Coast, the Caribbean, and teh Yucatan Penninsula. There are two subspecies that move through our area. The Western Palm Warbler is the most common, and we’ll see them in good numbers next month. The name “Western” in this case may sound misleading, but they are definitely western in comparison to the other subspecies we sometimes see. The Yellow Palm Warbler usually migrates on a path much closer to the Atlantic coastline, and they tend to migrate earlier than their Western counterparts. When we get really bright yellow Palm in early spring, we know we have something unusual!

Thanks much to today’s awesome crew. Barb W. has been a lynchpin of the Sunday crew for many years, and she is joined by Lydia and Cindy C. as our experienced anchor team. After a pandemic hiatus, Danielle and Robert returned to the station today, and we welcomed new crew member Jules. With three high-school students and three moms now staffing our Sundays, this is a young but incredibly talented crew.

— Andrea Patterson