Saturday, May 16, 2009

Wind and Sparrows - Banding on 5/16

The constantly blowing winds of the past 3 days did not make us feel as if the banding session on Saturday at Carver Park in Victoria, MN would be very productive. Just finding spots to put nets that were out of the wind proved to be frustrating. However sometimes you just have to do your best and Mark did manage to find "the spot". In spite of 2 of the nets being in the open, exposed to the wind and fully lit up by the sun, they were the best set of the day.

For the middle of May we had an unexpected number of sparrows and only one warbler. So today I'm going to show off the sparrows we handled like this nice Lincoln's Sparrow, Melospiza lincolnii.

The soft buzz buzz of the Clay-colored Sparrow, Spizella pallida alerted us to the presence of this fellow.

The most numerous sparrow of the day was the Chipping Sparrow, Spizella passerina. We banded 11 of these guys and they can be heard giving their "sewing machine" call just about everywhere.

Field Sparrow, Spizella pusilla was the 4th species on the sparrow list today. I love that pink bill and when I have students in the field they get a kick out of the Field Sparrow's call which sounds like a ping-pong ball bouncing on a table top. That descending whistle is easy to ID.

Sparrows weren't the only birds we caught but I'm saving a couple of cool surprises for later. Tomorrow it's back out into the field for another day of banding. This time it's to Ritter Farm Park in Lakeville, MN. where there is a special event day put on by the city. Maybe tomorrow will be a "warbler day".

1 comment:

dAwN said...

Thanks for posting these great pics of the sparrows.i find them difficult to Id...