Migration is slowing down as we head into November, which is typical for this location at this time of year. Most of the Neotropical migrants have passed through, and it is too early for large numbers of wintering birds such as Yellow-rumped warblers to arrive. This week’s front passed on Sunday with little fanfare, although it cleared out some of the Gray catbirds waiting around for a favorable departure wind, and we had a noticeable influx of Western palm warblers and Yellow-rumped warblers. Today it was too windy to open any of the nets, and the forecast is for the wind to stay high until Thursday. This is the first time we have had to stay closed due to weather for the entire field season, which is unusual. No tropical storms or hurricanes came anywhere near us in 2013.
This male Golden-winged warbler was a real late treat on Nov 1, since we usually see these in September. He was in very good condition with enough body fat to carry him all the way to Colombia. Hopefully he is there today!
This is only the second hawk we have captured this season, another female Sharpie. In past years we have caught on average a dozen hawks, mostly Sharp-shins and Cooper’s, but a Red-shouldered hawk and a couple Broad-winged hawks have also ended up in the nets. Hawks usually escape from our nets because the mesh size is more appropriate for smaller birds.
Fly! Be free! Live long and prosper!
Nico and Lucas are both great students of banding and have learned a lot about the birds and our methods. Nico has learned how to take the birds out of the net himself; at least the ones in the lower shelves.
Lucas with a Common ground-dove. He will also make an excellent extractor when he gets a little older!
Everybody gets muddy feet when they go to check net 20; it’s usually worth it as that is our best net!