Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Hawk Ridge Banding Report, October 1-10, 2014

Passerine Banding Report

October blew in hard, and summer birds have moved on through, changing the look of the passerine banding season from large numbers of warblers to the later season birds: kinglets, thrushes, Brown Creepers, Winter Wrens and sparrows. 121 passerines were banded between October 1-10 of 19 species banded during 4 days. Promptly on October 1, the first Fox Sparrow of the season was banded and 4 more on the 6th. Ruby-crowned Kinglets with 30 caught, as well as 8 Golden-crowned Kinglets have dominated the nets during this period. 

Passerine banding for the public at the overlook took place on Oct. 5th, yielding 28 birds. Most of these were caught in the first run or two of the mist nets before high winds necessitated closing the nets and switching to walk in traps. 13 White-throated Sparrows were banded along with 3 Fox Sparrows, 1 Black-capped Chickadee and 1 Yellow-rumped Warbler.
Blue Jay (Miranda Durbin)

Hairy Woodpecker (Nova Mackentley)

Margie Menzies
Hawk Ridge Passerine Bander/Naturalist

Owl Banding Report

The owl migration has certainly picked up during this period and seems to be in full swing now. Owl monitoring sites in eastern Canada and the northeast states have all reported slow starts to the migration as well. Between October 1-10, a total 286 Northern Saw-whet Owls were banded which brings the season totals to 420. The peak nights thus far were on the 6 and 10, October with 69 and 100, respectfully. Currently the age ratio of hatch-year birds is 57%  for the season.

Long-eared Owls are also picking up now with 5 banded during the period and bring the season total to 8. All have been hatch year birds. 

Northern Saw-whet Owl - second year (Miranda Durbin)

Long-eared Owl (Madison McConnell)

Madison McConnell
Hawk Ridge Owl Bander

Raptor Banding Report

The hawk movement was certainly good during the period when a system just north of us produced westerly winds from the 3-10, October which resulted in 673 hawks banded and included the following: Bald Eagle-4, Northern Harrier-6, Sharp-shinned Hawk-596, Cooper’s Hawk-11, Northern Goshawk-22, Red-tailed Hawk-29, American Kestrel-2, Merlin-2, Peregrine Falcon-1.
Adult Bald Eagle (Frank Nicoletti)

Adult Red-tailed Hawk, rufous morph (Chris Neri)

Hatch-year Red-tailed Hawk, rufous morph (Kaitlin Alford)
Hatch-year Bald Eagle (Nova Mackentley)

An update on the Turkey Vulture tagged in August in West Duluth. It started migrating on 4 October and its last location was 41.52883, -91.12217, 28 mi west of Davenport, Iowa where it roosted the night of 8 October. I will continue to update the movements during the fall migration and report on its wintering locations.

Frank Nicoletti
Hawk Ridge Banding Director

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