Last week I got to visit briefly. This week, I got to visit from (almost) start to finish. (Sadly, my “alarm clock” – a.k.a. cell phone – was left at work and I had to rely on my body to wake me up on time – which it failed to do… Still, I got there sometime between 6 and 6:30!)
I was especially interested in practicing taking birds out of the net, since Emily will be down one technician next week. The first two birds were newly fledged wrens hopelessly twisted in the nets. I tried, but had to give them up to more experienced hands. The third bird was… a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker, which Eric decided was not the best bird for starting out the morning.
As the day went on, though, I did get plenty of practice on a variety of birds big and small. Emily even let Katie, Maggie, and me take turns banding. Maggie and Katie really started getting the hang of Pyles… I am still hopeless… but perhaps trainable? We’ll see…
The most exciting catch of the day was big! We have been seeing lots of Green Herons doing the fly-by thing and spoke about how great it would be if one went into a net. So when we saw something big in net 7, we all thought “Green Heron!” It wasn’t, but it was thrilling just the same: a bird Emily had never banded before: Pileated Woodpecker!
Everyone wanted a chance to be photographed with her.
We also were blessed by the appearance of a Blue-winged Warbler, which somehow, I didn’t manage to photograph. Emily says this is the first at this banding station. The Indigo Bunting was thrilling to see:
One of the last birds of the day was one I kept hearing all morning and wishing would go into the net: Common Yellowthroat. And here is the handsome gentleman:
I’m looking forward to next week! Join us!