8/19/2006

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Fall Migration at TTPBRS-Aug 12-18, 2006


The second week of fall migration at TTPBRS began on August 12 with some strong early morning movement of warblers, mostly Yellows and Myrtles. The vast majority of the birds were found in the tops of birch trees throughout the study area which meant that our surveys were far more productive than the mist-nets were. An unusual daily occurrence throughout the week was the observation of substantial flocks of Red-winged Blackbirds passing over just after dawn which we normally don't encounter until later on in October and November. A total of 17 birds were banded on the 13th which included 2 Black-throated Blue Warblers. Other noteworthy observations from the day included an Osprey, and several of both Cape May and Tennessee Warbler. South winds on the 14th and 15th likely held birds back as bird migration was generally lacking. August 16th was very interesting as both the diversity of species and overall abundance was high for August at Tommy Thompson Park. A total of 16 warbler species were recorded including an estimated 60 Myrtle, 5 Black-throated Green, 9 Blackburnian and 8 Northern Waterthrush. Common Loon, Veery, Philadelphia Vireo and Mourning Warbler put in first appearances for fall 2006 on the 17th. What we have found at TTPBRS over the course of the first four years is that early fall migrants tend not to linger in the area very long as indicated by high turnover and low recapture rates. This was much in evidence on the 18th as just 9 birds were banded from a full compliment of net hours. Despite this there were some "new" birds around which included 6 Cape May Warbler, the first high flying Bobolink of the fall and over 170 Red-winged Blackbirds. August 2005 was very atypical at TTPBRS due in large part to the remarkable abundance of Yellow-rumped "myrtle" Warblers which consisted of moulting juveniles and adults. This may not be as odd as we thought as we are seeing even more of this species in 2006! Over the course of the next few weeks we can look forward to more and more warblers, the arrival of vireos and thrushes and what is looking to be a most impressive Monarch Butterfly migration!

HIGHLIGHTS

Banding

Aug 12
3-Blackburnian Warbler
Aug 13
1-Swainson's Thrush
2-Black-throated Blue Warbler
Aug 15
5-Myrtle Warbler
Aug 16
6-Traill's Flycatcher
Aug 17
1-Veery
Aug 18
2-Ruby-throated Hummingbird

Observations

Aug 12
25-Eastern Kingbird
45-Yellow Warbler
1-Slate-coloured Junco
160-Red-winged Blackbird
Aug 13
1-Osprey
17-Warbling Vireo
3-Cape May Warbler
1-Bay-breasted Warbler
1-Blackpoll Warbler
4-Wilson's Warbler
Aug 14
1-Sharp-shinned Hawk
Aug 15
4-Blue-winged Teal
Aug 16
2-Red-breasted Merganser
60-Myrtle Warbler
6-Black-and-white Warbler
Aug 17
1-Common Loon
1-Philadelphia Vireo
42-Yellow Warbler
7-Chestnut-sided Warbler
8-Northern Waterthrush
Aug 18
1-Bobolink
172-Red-winged Blackbird

Season Banding Total
06-248
05-246
04-341

Season Species Total
06-90
05-96
04-86