Bird Conservancy of the Rockies, Chatfield Banding Station - May 31. 2023

Skip to first unread message

Meredith McBurney

Jun 4, 2023, 10:54:55 AM6/4/23
to Colorado Birds
Got a little behind, what with finishing up and taking down the station!

May 31, the last day of our spring season, was another slow day; 16 new birds, all likely year-round or summer residents except for a couple of late Lincoln's Sparrows. Caught our third Western Wood-Pewee in as many days, the only three of the season - they arrived late.  Major disappointment was not re-catching the "king" of the small Red-eyed Vireo clan who was banded in 2017; he was seen around the river nets on several occasions but seemed to be fully aware of their locations.  Here's the break-down of the final 16 birds banded:

Western Wood-pewee 1
Red-eyed Vireo 1
House Wren 1
Gray Catbird 1
Yellow Warbler 5
Common Yellowthroat 2
Yellow-breasted Chat 1
Song Sparrow 1
Lincoln's Sparrow 2
American Goldfinch 1

Key words describing the season - Weather, water, wildlife (think bobcat), wildfires and wind

We were rained out more than usual - 5 days total.  The trail from the station to the river became a stream and 2 of the 4 river nets were closed most of the season. The bobcat, which first showed up on May 9, plagued us for the balance of the season, leading to the permanent closure of 2 other nets.  My heartfelt thanks to all those who volunteered extra hours to strategically guard the nets so that we could continue to run the station.  And then there were the wildfires in Canada and the north winds that brought the smoke down to all of us on the front range - a health hazard for birds (and humans), and which likely delayed the migration of birds continuing north and may impact the breeding season for those that breed in western Canada.

Our total of 641 individual birds caught was about average; it will probably be slightly above average when we take into account the number of nets and days open.   Flycatcher and warbler numbers appear to continue to be below normal (perhaps not having fully recovered from the heat/fires/storms/etc. of 2020).  More info to follow as data is processed!

It is always great to see many of you at the station and to get your e-mails responding to these posts!  We are already looking forward to fall at Barr Lake - we will be open for visitors starting Friday, August 25 - check here for info about registering to visit!

Meredith McBurney
Bander, Chatfield Banding Station
Bird Conservancy of the Rockies
Reply all
Reply to author
0 new messages