Date: 6/10/18 9:15 am
From: Chris Rimmer <crimmer...>
Subject: [VTBIRD] Mansfield update, better late than never
Although "old news" now, VCE's second field 2018 visit to Mt. Mansfield
took place last Wednesday-Thursday. We set 25 mist nets on the ridgeline
during early evening under calm, cool and partly cloudy conditions. We
immediately started catching birds and had 18 by nightfall, when we closed
our nets. The dusk chorus was robust, and several Bicknell's Thrushes
(BITH) performed their signature flight songs as complete darkness fell.
Nine of the 18 birds we captured were BITH.

Clouds moved in and lowered overnight, with temps dipping into the mid-40s
F, though the wind thankfully stayed calm. Conditions for banding were
chilly and our nets wet, but we managed to have a solid morning, with
several small groups of White-winged Crossbills and Pine Siskins moving
around the ridgeline. Again, not a single Winter Wren was heard, a most
conspicuous absence. As last week, Ruby-crowned Kinglets and Purple Finches
were singing in above-average numbers, and I have never heard as many as
the 5 Am. Robins that were singing within striking distance of the
uppermost parking lot. After last fall's bountiful balsam fir cone crop, it
was truly surprising not to encounter hide nor hair of a red squirrel on
the ridgeline.

Our two-day banding total of 77 birds:

Yellow-bellied Flycatcher 1
Bicknell's Thrush 21 6 new, 11 returns from previous years (1 banded
in each of 2011-2013, 4 from 2016, 4 from 2017), 4 within-season retraps
Swainson's Thrush 6 4 new, 2 returns from previous years (2015 and
American Robin 1
Blackpoll Warbler 7 5 new, 2 returns from 2016
Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) 4
Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored) 8 7 new, 1 return from 2017)
White-throated Sparrow 15 13 new, 1 banded in 2017, 1 within-season
Purple Finch 4 3 males and 1 female with fully-developed brood patch
White-winged Crossbill 3 1 new female + retrap of pair banded last
week on 31 May
Pine Siskin 7 4 free-flying juveniles, 3 adults

None of the long-distance migrants showed evidence of active nesting (i.e.,
no incubation patches), while robins, juncos, W-t Sparrows and PUFIs are
all on eggs, if not tending young nestlings. Both the female crossbills and
siskins showed regressing brood patches, indicating that they had nested at
least a couple of weeks ago, if not earlier.

We'll be back up there on Mon-Tues this week and will try to post a more
timely update.



Chris Rimmer
Vermont Center for Ecostudies
PO Box 420 | Norwich, Vermont 05055
802.649.1431 x202

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