Date: 5/7/20 5:26 am
From: John Fussell <jofuss...>
Subject: what's the deal with Common Grackles??
Throughout spring and early summer, Common Grackles are common in the upland
maritime forest and interlying swales of swamp forest and shrub swamps in
the Theodore Roosevelt Natural Area (Bogue Banks, Carteret County). It
seems that some are always within hearing or sight. And, usually when I
pish to bring some in closer, often 50 or more will almost immediately move
in to protest loudly.

I never see any nests. I confess that I haven't looked real hard for them,
but I do look some, and in many of these habitat structures I would think
that any nests would be easy to spot.

Are there typically non-breeding bands of Common Grackles that habitually
wander around without nesting? What's the deal here? Has anyone else
experienced this phenomenon? Does anyone have any answers?

I might add that this is something I've noticed every spring and early
summer that I've spent time in this park.

I will add that this same situation exists with Red-winged Blackbirds, but
to a much lesser extent.

John Fussell
Morehead City, NC

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