Today's banding session at the Lowry Nature Center near Victoria, Minnesota was slow and actually quite disappointing for the month of March. With the warmer temps earlier this week we were hoping for some migrants to have moved into the area but it appeared as though stuff left but nothing moved in behind it. There is a truism in banding though that one good bird can wipe away any disappointment and make the whole day worthwhile. This was one of those days. While we sat and watched our traps remain empty and saw our net blowing in the breeze we weren't prepared for the arrival of a Pileated Woodpecker (a second year female) that flew straight into the net and was quickly in hand. Exciting! Noteworthy! Unusual! But dangerous??? Check out the photo below to see what happened to my hand as I held the bird so people could get a photo before we released it. Blood spilled in the name of science. Wounds to wear with pride. Bring on the Grosbeaks!
A couple of photos of the culprit.
It takes 2 to band a Pileated Woodpecker.
Photos aand video courtesy of Susie Henderson.