Saturday, June 1, 2013

Visit to Auburn Bird Banding Project III

Spring migration is almost over, and the bird banding project is winding down.  This may be their last weekend.  I didn't want to miss a chance to see what they might be banding, so I was up early and in Auburn at some ungodly hour of the morning after a rotten night's sleep.  I'm so tired now I can't remember what time it was.

Common Yellowthroat (female)

Cedar Waxwing


This is the only close-up view I've had of the red part of the wing, the part for which the Cedar "Waxwing" gets its name.  The red tips look like wax!  Cool!

Eastern Phoebe (collecting food for its nestlings)
Notice that it is a banded bird (see its right leg has the tiny band on it?)

Common Yellowthroat (male)

Yellow Warbler

Baltimore Oriole (female)

Gray Catbird

Tree Swallow

A man was weed-whacking just outside of this Tree Swallow's nesting box, so it was peeking out trying to figure out what the heck was going on.

Tree Swallow

American Robin

Mark B was showing us the male reproductive organ (called cloaca) of this male Robin.  Blowing on the feathers exposed the cloaca, which is swollen for about a month during mating season.  For females, they look for a bald spot in this same general area, which is a brooding patch for keeping eggs warm in the nest.

This may have been my favorite bird, albeit a common Robin, because I got to hold it before it was released.  I was afraid to do it and didn't have as good a grasp up by its body as I should have of its legs, so I let it go from my grip, rather than placing it on my open palm.  But, at least it was a strong, tough Robin and I didn't hurt it.  That was my first experience holding a bird, and I hope to try it again another time.

Northern Cardinal (female)


Red-Eyed Vireo

Eastern Bluebird

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