Late last week, our fall banding crew took down the 50 mist nets that trace our property—signaling the end of our 49th fall migration season.
For the last three months, Manomet Headquarters was alive with the sights and sounds of migration as our lab handled nearly 3,000 birds. While the total is slightly below the average for the last 15 years, there were a lot of moments worth celebrating.
For starters, 11 species matched or exceeded the record number of new captures from the last 10 years, including Tufted Titmice (391) and Ruby-throated Hummingbirds (13). The lab also had three very rare captures: Bell’s Vireo, Eastern Whip-poor-will and Ruffed Grouse.
However, it wasn’t all good news. 11 other species recorded a 10-year low for new captures, including Carolina Wren, Magnolia Warbler, and Wilson’s Warbler. Most of the species that recorded low numbers were small passerines that winter in North America and were probably affected by the preceding harsh winter.
Our lab couldn’t run without our amazing banders and volunteers. This season our banders: Lauren, Alex, Kristen and Mikayla shared their enthusiasm and knowledge of birds with countless visitors and thousands of Twitter followers.