Monday, April 19, 2010

Saturday in the Park

What a beautiful day to be out banding at Carver Park. The anticipation was palpable while I drove into the park as I could see all sorts of birds jumping up from the roadside and I could hear even more birds in the trees. I wasn't disappointed. As the crew got set up, the birds started coming into the station. Above you can see itinerant bird researcher Ben at the banding table processing one of the 20 birds we caught during our morning program. A complete list of birds caught will be listed at the end of this entry.

One of my favorite spring migrants is the White-throated Sparrow, Zonotrichia albicollis. This breeding plumaged male really made an impression on the visitors to our program.

Some of our regular residents also showed up such as this Downy Woodpecker, Picoides pubescens. The one skill banders are always improving is their ability to get birds out of mist nets efficiently and without harming the bird. It doesn't help when the bird you're removing is trying to drill a hole in your fingers.

This fellow was pretty cooperative and both bird and bander were none the worse for wear after processing.

We had a 3 woodpecker day including this Red-bellied Woodpecker, Melanerpes carolinus, which is quite a handful, especially when you're trying to get them to pose for pictures.

An unexpected catch was a female Mourning Dove, Zenaida macroura, a real "two hands" bird. Of all the birds we caught this one took the largest band (3A). Measuring a bird this size make all the other birds feel really small.

Totals for the day are below:

Ruby-crowned Kinglet (3)
Dark-eyed Junco (1)
Black-capped Chickadee (1 retrap)
White-throated Sparrow (2)
Downy Woodpecker (2)
Song Sparrow (1)
White-breasted Nuthatch (2 retrap)
Hairy Woodpecker (1)
Brown-headed Cowbird (1)
Red-winged Blackbird (4)
Red-bellied Woodpecker (1)
Mourning Dove (1)

Total Species = 12
Total Individuals = 20
Pretty typical numbers for a spring session.

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