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5/07/2007

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Migration Monitoring at TTPBRS- April 29-May 5

Banded White-throated Sparrow (©Seabrooke Leckie)

The week began with light north winds and a moderate passage of migrants. The highlight of April 29 was the first appearance of Northern Waterthrush this spring and high numbers of Myrtle Warblers. Migrants were grounded overnight by passing showers, which led to several new arrivals on the 30th including American Pipit, Wood Thrush, Great Crested Flycatcher and our earliest spring record of Bobolink. While many birds were around that morning, the winds were rolling out of the north at 70+kph, which made it very difficult to find them! The first day of May was a quiet affair as just 16 birds were banded, although Cliff Swallow, Ruddy Duck and Spotted Sandpiper were observed. We were eagerly anticipating the arrival of some new warbler species on the 2nd, however the study area was distinctly more "April-like" with kinglets and Hermit Thrushes dominating. A total of 40 birds were banded on May 3, which included a Northern Waterthrush and the first Veery of the spring. Calm conditions overnight set the stage for a busier morning on May 4. It felt a little more like May on this morning with sightings of Rose-breasted Grosbeak, Least Flycatcher, Ovenbird and several Yellow Warblers. The day belonged to the White-throated Sparrows as 82 were banded and over 180 tallied. Baltimore Oriole, Gray Catbird and Swainson's Thrush added some diversity to the mobs of White-throats on May 5th. Overall it was a good week at TTPBRS with new species arriving on a daily basis and a reasonable amount of activity to keep us busy!

NEWS AND NOTES

The Winged Migration program for schools has been running daily during the week at TTPBRS and the kids were especially fascinated by in--hand views of Common Grackle, Black-and-white Warbler and Ruby-crowned Kinglets!

Don't forget that Saturday, May 12 is our official Baillie Birdathon day coinciding with the Spring Bird Festival at Tommy Thompson Park. It's not too late to lend your support to keep TTPBRS going. You can sponsor Mark Cullen online by clicking here: http://www.bsc-eoc.org/bat/donate.jsp?number=92904

TTPBRS volunteers have begun a new monitoring program in Pickering at Duffin's Marsh. The program will establish a baseline index of avian communities in the marsh and will continue tracking the restoration of the wetland on an annual basis.

Although the spring migration season is only half completed, we are beginning preparations for our summer breeding bird work across the GTA. Year two of Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship at Claireville Conservation Area will begin in early June and nest records are already being logged at Tommy Thompson Park.

HIGHLIGHTS

Banding

Apr 29
11-Ruby-crowned Kinglet
Apr 30
2-Nashville Warbler
May 3
1-Veery
2-Brown Thrasher
1-Northern Waterthrush
May 4
1-Least Flycatcher
1-Eastern Phoebe
5-Brown Creeper
1-Blue-headed Vireo
1-Ovenbird
82-White-throated Sparrow
May 5
1-Least Flycatcher
1-Wood Thrush
1-Savannah Sparrow
3-Lincoln's Sparrow
6-White-crowned Sparrow
1-Gambel's White-crowned Sparrow

Observations

Apr 29
55-Ruby-crowned Kinglet
90-Myrtle Warbler
1-Northern Waterthrush
1-Purple Finch
Apr 30
7-Common Loon
1-Great Crested Flycatcher
1-Wood Thrush
5-Bobolink
May 1
216-Tree Swallow
1-Ruddy Duck
1-Cliff Swallow
May 2
4-Lesser Yellowlegs
May 3
1-Turkey Vulture
2-Spotted Sandpiper
7-Slate-colored Junco
May 4
13-Golden-crowned Kinglet
65-Hermit Thrush
5-Yellow Warbler
1-Black-throated Blue Warbler
1-Rose-breasted Grosbeak
1-Lincoln's Sparrow
185-White-throated Sparrow
May 5
1-Semipalmated Plover
60-Bonaparte's Gull
1-Swainson's Thrush
3-Gray Catbird
7-American Pipit
1-Baltimore Oriole

Season Banding Total
2007-1085
2006-1113
2005-873
2004-672

Season Species Total
2007-125
2006-125
2005-110
2004-129