Sunday, September 27, 2009

Racing the Wind and Rain

I woke up this morning to the sound of wind blowing through the trees in the yard and seriously debated turning over and catching a few more hours of sleep. However, I know that the migrants aren't going to be here for much longer and even if it's windy my net lanes are fairly sheltered. Because I'm set up in a bit of a low spot my nets are often protected even in a strong wind. Figuring I had to go get my poles today anyway I dragged myself out of bed and got out to my site. It turned out to be not bad at the lanes so I went ahead and set nets planning on spending most of the time grading papers for school.

I was pleasantly surprised when this Swainson's Thrush was the first catch of the day. The thrushes may be around for a while yet.

A harbinger of fall is the Ruby-crowned Kinglet. I'm always amazed at how small these birds are and how thin their legs are. Handling these guys takes a light touch.

Nicest catch of the day was this Blue-headed Vireo (forever to be Solitary Vireo to me). It was a feisty bird, making sure it gave me a few "bird kisses" before I let it go.

I really love how colorful birds can be even in the fall. I think this guy was really posing for this shot.

The rains came just as I was making my last net run of the day. Got all the equipment in and headed home. This was a great weekend for banding with a total of 24 birds of 12 species. Hopefully, I can have a few more weekends like this before the nets get put away for another season.

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