The Manomet Banders

Photos by Megan Gray.

Fresh new leaves are emerging all over the property and the lower limbs of the Norway Maple outside the banding lab are almost completely leafed out. We had an exciting week for the first week of May. We caught 305 new birds, processed 368 recaptures, and caught 15 new species. This brings our season total up to 507 new birds banded, 597 recaptures processed, and 43 species. New species of note that we caught included Black-and-white Warbler, Nashville Warbler, Magnolia Warbler, and Common Yellowthroat.

Monday was our busiest day yet with an impressive turnover of birds. A soft, pastel sunrise greeted us as we opened nets, and later in the day the first bright yellow Trout Lilies bloomed along the bluff. We banded 120 new birds and processed 34 recaptures. We caught nine new species Monday, two of which were uncommon captures for us, a Wood Thrush and a White-Crowned Sparrow. Tuesday we awoke to rain and wind. We waited around all day and finally were able to open at 2:30 when the rain tapered off. We had a busy few hours with many White-throated Sparrows visiting the feeder station traps in the chilly east wind. We also caught a Slate-colored Junco that we had watched hopping on the banding patio just a few hours before.

We were expecting Wednesday to be a total wash for us with rain predicted all day. Unsurprisingly, as so often happens at Manomet, the weather changed and we only had to contend with rain showers later in the afternoon. We had a productive day catching another new species for the week, a House Wren! We first heard a House Wren the previous week and finally caught one. We caught an almost even number of new birds (79) and recaptured birds (81).