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Bonapart's Gull

Bonapart’s Gull

Friday evening Marg spend the night at my house and we had some laughs catching up since our last visit. I left extra early on Saturday morning to pick up Young Naturalist J for the 85th annual Eastern Bird Banding Association meeting at Presque Isle State Park. Young Naturalist J was excited to hear that Marg and Richard would be joining us at this conference. He didn’t expect to see many other banding friends of ours and make a few new friends.

Eastern Towhee

Eastern Towhee

This year the Eastern Bird Banding Association did a wonderful job in organizing this meeting and it was magnificent seeing so many acquaintances of mine. We listened to 14 different presentations on many ongoing bird banding projects and heard a reports from the banding lab. We had a wonderful dinner that evening and then heard a presentation about twenty years of color banding studies at Hemlock Hill Biological Research Area.

j's edited

Ruby-crowned Kinglet by Young Naturalist J

Just before dinner . . . . Young Naturalist J and myself decided to skip out of the meeting for a few hours to do some birding with Toni from A Spattering. Toni and her husband were wonderful tour guides and helped us find 38 species of birds that were out on Presque Isle State Park. If you have not had an opportunity to visit her blog . . . I strongly suggest it!

Eagle Nest

Presque Isle Eagle Nest

The first for 2008 birds that we saw included Great Egret (CHECK), Red-breasted Merganser (CHECK), Ruddy Duck (CHECK), Hermit Thrush (CHECK), Yellow-rumped Warbler (CHECK), Eastern Towhee (CHECK), and Common Grackle (CHECK). I tried turning a Red-bellied Woodpecker and Common Flicker into a Red-headed Woodpecker but then again I also tried turning a Mourning Dove who gave us the run around into a Sharpie (but was just a MODO). Even with the bad weather/lighting . . . . we still had a great time getting out to enjoy the birds!

Prints in the Sand

Prints in the Sand by Young Naturalist J

It was such a great weekend to be visiting many great banders, birders and bloggers! I am back to the real world and now need to do some catch-up with everything! I hope everyone had as wonderful of a weekend as I did!

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22 responses

  1. Marg

    Fantastic post Tom! It was great to see you and J-and I should have gone birding with you too. But Richard thought we should attend the Bandit workshop!

    13 April 2008 at 8:34 pm

  2. Nice shot of the Bonapart gull ….and also I like the kinglet…sounds like you had a great time…cheers.

    13 April 2008 at 9:21 pm

  3. It was awesome birding with the two of you. So yes come May we will find that red headed woodpecker. As soon as you get dates let me know. Tell ‘J’ I said hi.

    13 April 2008 at 9:38 pm

  4. That sounds very interesting and fun. Wow, 38 species! I’ll check out Toni’s blog.

    13 April 2008 at 10:47 pm

  5. What an interesting weekend you had! (I didn’t realize until now that there was a Presque Isle anywhere else besides Maine…)

    13 April 2008 at 10:51 pm

  6. Cool nest & ruby crowned kinglet! I’ve always wanted to see a kinglet–no luck yet. Glad you had a great time. Sorry for my recent absence, again–mundania intruded.

    14 April 2008 at 3:13 am

  7. sounds like a great weekend spent with good people. The pictures are fantastic. I especially like the one of the gull and the footprints in the sand.

    14 April 2008 at 5:52 am

  8. Sounds like a great time! Hey Tom, when you get a change, head over to Ruth’s (Body, Soul, and Spirit) blog and take a listen to her “frog” sounds video to explain what all we are hearing. :c)

    14 April 2008 at 6:47 am

  9. winterwoman

    Sounds like a nice day. Guess I’ll be doing those sorts of bird nerd things soon, eh? Do you suppose that pine was bending like that before the eagles nested there? And whose tracks are those in the sand?

    14 April 2008 at 7:22 am

  10. That’s wonderful you had a good time. We were at Presque Isle at about the same time Toni was and it is too bad I didn’t spot you guys. We got a lot of “firsts” on Dead Pond Trail. We had such a great time there!

    14 April 2008 at 8:28 am

  11. Mourning doves into sharpies, huh? That’s okay, I think everyone has done those same things more than once.

    — Marty

    14 April 2008 at 8:52 am

  12. What a great trip–you saw a lot of birds and had a good time as well!

    14 April 2008 at 10:26 am

  13. Sounds like a fine weekend indeed! It looks like your kinglets behave like our west coast ones and hide in the shade – I always have a heck of a time photographing them!

    14 April 2008 at 11:08 am

  14. Grace

    Glad the experts make mistakes too. It’s awfully easy to see what you want to see. 😉

    14 April 2008 at 12:31 pm

  15. Sarah Hurst

    The picture of the bonapart’s gull is really beautiful.

    14 April 2008 at 3:19 pm

  16. I loved the prints in the sand – congratulate Naturalist J on a really great shot. (I’m guessing canine…)

    I also really like looking at your eastern towhee – very cool. My son got a really nice shot of the western yesterday and I’m hoping he will blog it. (Getting the towhees I’ve found are tricky….) I’m glad to hear you two had such a nice weekend!

    14 April 2008 at 4:11 pm

  17. Bo

    Sounds like it was a great time – 38 species sounds like a lot. You are inspiring me to add a bird ID book to my collection.

    14 April 2008 at 7:19 pm

  18. Lisa at Greenbow

    Sounds like you had as much fun this weekend as I did only I wasn’t with birding friends. No FOY birds for me. I had lots of fun though.

    14 April 2008 at 9:07 pm

  19. @ Marg – It was wonderful seeing you and Richard! Next visit and I would be happy to show you how the program works! I have been using it for 2 years! Did he learn anything?
    @ islandrambles – Thanks and we had a great time . . . then again we always try to have a great time!
    @ Toni – thanks and we enjoyed spending time with you guys also! The bird club will be there the second weekend in May!
    @ Robin – hope you check out toni’s blog! She happened to capture a picture of the two of us!
    @ Rondi – Thanks and I didn’t know there was any others besides the PA one!
    @ Lana – I hear more kinglets than I see! Thanks and was great!
    @ Beth – Thanks and it was! Young naturalist J captured the footprints shot (and edited the picture)!
    @ Jayne – Sure was and will head over to check out this evening!
    @ Jen – I sure hope you will be! I had a similar thought about the eagle nest! Not sure! BTW: a few from Long Point were there and maybe the person who first banded your cowbird!
    @ Linda – If I knew you were there . . . . I would have been waving flags to get your attention! Dead Pond . . . I don’t think we headed over there! Yucky weather but good day for sure!
    @ Marty – was interesting seeing how this bird was flying! I want to do a post some day on trash bags that I think are birds!
    @Joan – Thanks and was great for sure!
    @ Adam – Thanks and we tried calling it in! But they just moved faster!
    @ Grace – I tried many times getting a Red-headed Woodpecker! I know where they are at on the Sidewalk trail though! But didn’t have the time to go looking for them!
    @ Sarah – Thanks and glad you enjoyed it!
    @ Aullori – thanks and hope to see the towhee shot! It was fun for sure and he’s doing great with the camera! Although he needs to work more on the manual focus!
    @ Bo – thanks and for April we can get more! But did alright considering the time of the day . . . ect. . .
    @ Lisa – Thanks and it is wonderful spending time with friends!

    14 April 2008 at 9:41 pm

  20. Marg

    yes actually we did 🙂

    15 April 2008 at 12:39 pm

  21. Great pictures from what looks like a fun weekend.
    That eagle nest looks a little precarious! I don’t think I’d want to be a baby eagle trying to hang on in some high winds…..

    16 April 2008 at 10:19 am

  22. Dear Tom,
    Looks as if you had a wonderful weekend; friends, birds and good food, perfect!
    I am wanting to see an Eastern Towhee. They look to be very pretty birds.

    17 April 2008 at 5:02 pm

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