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

SWAT Station

SWAT and the Thunderstorm

Blackburnian Warbler
Blackburnian Warbler

Yesterday (Tuesday) was our second banding session for the SWAT MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship) banding station. Yesterday was one of the most beautiful mornings with perfect temperatures, little wind and a sunny sky. About 2 hours into banding and I started to hear some grumbling in the background . . . nope not my stomach. That was thunder rumbling in the distance.

Chestnut-sided Warbler

Chestnut-sided Warbler
One of my banded Chestnut-sided Warblers

Had a SWAT banding session scheduled this morning and after 3 hours of banding (with sunshine). . . . the thunderstorms quickly surround me and forced me to close everything up. The final 3 hours of banding will be done tomorrow and I will then do my banding report. Until then . . . . I will share these Chestnut-sided Warbler pictures that I captured on Monday.

SWAT Banding Day 1

magnolia warbler
Magnolia Warbler – photo by Young Naturalist J

Friday morning we had our first day of banding at the SWAT MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship) banding station. We were able to band 24 species of birds and 47 newly banded individuals (with 8 recaptured birds). We had many banding assistants helping this session which were very much needed with all these great birds! Thanks again for their help everyone! (more…)

An Interesting Office Visitor

Have you ever been inside Wal-mart or Home Depot with birds flying around the store?? I feel sorry for those birdies and I find myself wondering who’s job it is to get them back outside safely?? Well, you know who gets the call whenever something is flying around the offices in the Administration Building!! I have rescued Chimney Swifts who accidentally fell down the chimney because someone forgot to close the damper. I am the one who saves the Little Brown Bats who accidentally finds there way inside whenever someone leaves a doors or window open due to hot temperatures during the summer. I have even rescued things like a Luna Moths (stuck between the storm windows), Hummingbirds, Meadow Jumping Mouse, Flying Squirrels, Ring-necked Snakes, and a ton of Chipmunks!! But I am rarely called upon during the winter months for unexpected critters that find there way into the offices (well, unless they are mice)!

Black-capped Chickadee
Today’s Black-capped Chickadee.



Song Sparrow

Song Sparrow (most captured species)

I have finally gone through all of my 2007 SWAT MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship) raw data this week. It has been hard trying to focus on this report with “other” new higher speed internet distractions that I have been having recently. Regarding the SWAT report: we had 6 banding sessions and able to capture a total of 164 different individuals with 34 same year recaptures. We used 8 (12 meter) polyester mist-nets and banded for 6 hours after the official sunrise time. That gave us a total of 198 captures for the station and we were very happy with the excellent year that we had. Even with the need to close the station early due to the Long-tailed Weasel that terrorizing us. We are not sure what we will do with next season (regarding the weasel) but we have all winter to figure something out. (more…)

numbers and letters

data entry

If you don’t see me online for the next few days. . . . I will be going bug eyed entering many numbers and letters into two different databases! This is the part of bird banding that isn’t as much fun as being with the birds. I will try to take some breaks to see what everyone is up to this week!

SWAT Shut Down!

Long-tailed Weasel

Long-tailed Weasel (with eye flash)

I made it official today . . . . the SWAT banding site is closed for the season. After an unwanted visitor showed some continued interest in my birds . . . . I made the decision to shut everything down for the safety of the birds. After discussing this situation with the Institute of Bird Populations, they agreed that my decision to shut down for the season is the best thing to do. (more…)