Entrenched high pressure over the mid-Atlantic region for the entire month of September made for slow banding. Winds were constantly out of the east or northeast, but despite only banding 530 birds we had some interesting species from time to time. Below is an adult male Blue-winged warbler banded on Sept. 20.Migrants are likely getting impatient waiting for a cold front to pass so they are moving anyways, although not as many as would get going if there were northerly winds. This Least flycatcher was an unusual capture as we have only banded two others since 2002. Odd, because this is the most likely Empidonax flycatcher to be seen in south Florida during the winter. They are very similar to Traill’s flycatchers, but have smaller bills, shorter wingtips, and a distinct eye-ring.
Black-throated blue warblers are increasing in abundance as we move into October, with 34 banded on Oct. 1. Males of the race that breeds in the Appalachians generally are a darker purple-blue above than males from other areas of the Northeast, and can have black streaks on their backs. Occasionally we get one with an entirely black back, like this guy here.
We heard some Western palm warblers and a Gray catbird today. Winter is right around the corner….right? Riiiight????