My life is about living with nature – here you can live it with me!

Towhee and Grouse at CLDC

Blue-winged Warbler
Blue-winged Warbler

On Saturday the 13th of June 2009 we opened the 2nd session of the CLDC MAPS banding station! We captured 14 different species and banded 13 newly banded birds with 14 recaptures (total of 27 individuals).

Eastern Towhee
Eastern Towhee

Besides the normal highlights like the capture of the Cedar Waxwing, Yellow Warbler, Indigo Bunting, Blue-winged Warbler, ect. . . . we had two other amazing bird captures during this session! The first was a recaptured Eastern Towhee who was wearing a worn band but thank goodness the numbers were still readable.

thin band
The thin band compared to its normal thickness!

The Eastern Towhees spend most of their time kicking the ground looking for seeds. When you look closer at the band . . . . you will find the band worn from the middle (not from the outside) and I can picture this kicking motion making the band move in a constant up and down motion! I decided to replace this thin band with a new band that will last the bird another 5 years of kicking. We first captured this bird on the 24th of July 2004 as a after hatch year bird (making it at least 6 years of age). It was a very exciting for a 5 year recapture . . . yet alone having the opportunity to replace the band before the band was lost forever (thanks to Jen for letting me use her side by side band photo)!

Ruffed Grouse
Female Ruffed Grouse

The other special capture of the day was a female Ruffed Grouse (I know a Ruffed Grouse . . . isn’t that crazy!!). This was a special moment for many of us at the banding station . . . . . we were at the right spot at the right time! Close inspection showed that the bird had a brood patch and we aged her as an after second year (making her at least 3 years of age)! She was such a beautiful bird to see up close and Kyle was given the blessing of releasing her back with the other birdies!

Kyle and Ruffed Grouse
Kyle Releasing the Grouse!

Thanks to the many banding assistants (Kyle, Jennifer, Young Naturalist J and his mother) who assisted with this banding session! With out your help . . . . this banding wouldn’t be possible!


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12 responses

  1. Liz thinks she saw towhees up in the woods yesterday. Will be a first for the farm if she did.

    16 June 2009 at 6:21 am

  2. I do so love the Towhees. They sing so loudly every morning and we hear them all through the day. Lovely photographs.

    16 June 2009 at 9:17 am

  3. I read Jennifer’s post, too, about the Towhee bands. It’s very interesting to learn the bands can get worn like that and possibly wear down enough in an older bird to fall off.

    16 June 2009 at 9:38 am

  4. I always enjoy your great photos–such close-ups, with wonderful detail.

    16 June 2009 at 7:38 pm

  5. LOL that Towhee looks a little peeved. We’re lucky to have them here all the time. And this year, the blue-wings are breeding here. No grouse though, darn it.

    16 June 2009 at 10:18 pm

  6. Lisa at Greenbow

    A RUFFED GROUSE!!!! amazing. I have seen so few of these birds and here you had one in hand. What a treat.

    17 June 2009 at 7:52 am

  7. Marg

    How cool is that! A six year Towhee!

    I love towhees and have never been there when we’ve captured one-and a Grouse too! A Red Banner Day!

    17 June 2009 at 8:15 am

  8. The photos are great–especially the closeup of the grouse. I do love the towhees–we have them below our feeders everyday. I enjoy listening to them.

    18 June 2009 at 10:39 am

  9. Very cool – I’ve never seen any grouse, so that would have been an extra thrill for me. Glad that your timing was so good.

    22 June 2009 at 2:56 pm

  10. Great birds! The Blue-winged Warbler is especially pretty

    26 June 2009 at 12:52 am

  11. That was a really fun day! I wish I could get out there more this year… but I just haven’t been able to get away!

    19 July 2009 at 7:20 am

  12. beautiful yellow bird..

    2 August 2009 at 1:38 am

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