Thursday, May 28, 2009

Southwest winds overnight produce the birds!

Another day in paradise! Paradise is usually the tropics where it rains everyday and the humidity is high, right? That was the situation today with high humidity and showers. To add to the paradise, winds remained out of the SW last night and into most of this day. The wind shifted to the west at almost 5 PM on the dot. There were birds around to be seen! Lots of variety to add to the paradise experience. How about a female Kentucky Warbler or a male Hooded this late for NW Ohio? Or would you like to be serenaded by a spunky Yellow-breasted Chat for most of the morning? They are the coolest bird with their grunts and whistles. I guess you have to hear it for yourself to determine the goodness of his quality singing. How about another Connecticut Warbler to add to the list? Or an OROR—stands for Orchard Oriole? I say this day could not be much better for this time of May! Definitely a good bird day! Yes, of course there were flycatchers everywhere and their compatriots the Red-eyed Vireos.

Sixteen species of warbler were captured with an additional 3 species observed or heard. These include Tennessee (a male was singing like crazy!), Yellow, Chestnut-sided, Magnolia, Black-throated Blue, Bay-breasted, Blackpoll, Black-and-white, American Redstart, Prothonotary, Ovenbird, Northern Waterthrush, Connecticut, Mourning, Common Yellowthroat, Hooded, Wilson’s, Canada, and Yellow-breasted Chat. Before the rain shut us down, we netted 186 new birds with 25 recaptures. Tomorrow with a forecast of NW winds should not affect us as much as a direct north or east wind. I expect a good day again tomorrow especially if the winds remain out of the west longer than forecasted.

Top 6 species:
Traill’s Flycatcher – 47
American Redstart – 17
Yellow-bellied Flycatcher – 15
Mourning Warbler – 15
Red-eyed Vireo – 11
Swainson’s Thrush – 10

The next south wind looks like Monday and I believe it will be the last push of most of the songbirds going north. We are catching a lot of female Yellow-bellied Flycatchers and other female warblers. Females may make life challenging. I am talking female birds, here. The female warblers sure have a beauty all their own with the subtle colors they wear.

Enjoy this look at this female Kentucky Warbler. How do I know it is a female? Because it had adult wing plumage (no worn or abraded coverts-you yourself can see the primary coverts and alula feather are edged with green-they look nice!) and it lacked the intense black on the head as a male would have.
To give males some show time here is a second-year male Orchard Oriole. Note: it is trying to be an adult with a few rust feathers coming in on the breast. Also note the two colored bill like all orioles have.

Have a good weekend!

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