Thursday, July 23, 2015

Day 16: The NeverEnding bird banding

Chippewa Nature Center has dried up so that mud remains and some trails look like the swamp of sadness from The NeveEnding Story.

The remaining feathers of an unfortunate waterfowl added to the affect.

Today we caught two new birds of the summer:

House wren

Cedar waxwing- we've been waiting to catch one of these for awhile because they're seen flying around often.

Named for their red wax like wing tips.

New catches aren't the only exciting birds. Sometimes it's fun to have bird facial hair show downs. 

Juvenile cardinal five-o-clock shadow

Adult beard

Even the ladies, like this female American redstart- have great whiskers. 
That juvenile with the pubescent facial hair was caught earlier this summer, At the time he had less coloration and a prominent line on his tail feathers that exhibited a period of malnutrition


Today I learned that dragonflies have five eyes and that you can determine if one is newly hatched. Their bodies and wings will feel squishy as opposed to older, fully hardened dragonflies. 

Ornithologists bet on birds. We guess at how many species and individuals we will catch with Price Is Right rules. I stick to 11 and 27, which is over optimistic. But today with 12 species and 21 individuals I got the closest I've been this summer. 

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