No blog post this week, but we mist netted a total of 50 birds on VCE's ridgeline study site Wednesday evening and Thursday morning. Vocal activity has subsided somewhat, with most birds now on nests with eggs or young (all females showed incubation/brood patches that were either fully-developed or in early stages of regression). Conditions were cool and windier than they have been, which kept captures down. We again slept under the stars, enjoying a low volume of human activity overall. With the toll road opening tomorrow, that will change during future weeks' sessions, but we'll look forward to some physically-distanced visitors.
Outside our nets, notable encounters included a pair of Broad-winged Hawks over the ridgeline on Wed. evening and a flock of 8 White-winged Crossbills calling in flight Thursday morning. The Smuggler's Notch raven family entertained us raucously throughout. We had our first 2 Swainson's Thrush captures of the season, while 'PUFIgeddon' diminished, with only 2 males heard singing and only 2 new captures (11 last week).
Our two-day capture total:
Sharp-shinned Hawk -- 1 new male, in same net as last week's bird Brown Creeper -- 1 female with regressing brood patch Ruby-crowned Kinglet -- 1 male Bicknell's Thrush -- 12: new SY male and female, 2 2019 returns (one banded as a hatching-year bird on 18 Sept), 8 within-season recaptures Swainson's Thrush -- 2 females, first captures of year American Robin -- 2: new female with regressing brood patch, return male from 2017 Purple Finch -- 2 new SY males (2020 banding total = 23 individuals) Dark-eyed Junco (Slate-colored) -- 8: 4 new, 4 within-season recaptures (1 male, 3 females) White-throated Sparrow -- 5 new bandings (3 males, 2 females) Black-and-white Warbler -- 1 SY male; unusual on ridgeline in June Blackpoll Warbler -- 6: 2 new males, 4 within-season recaptures Black-throated Blue Warbler -- 1 SY male Yellow-rumped Warbler (Myrtle) -- 8: 5 new bandings, 1 return male from 2016, 2 within-season recaps