Thursday, September 19, 2013

Willow Flycatcher

The wind subsided a bit today and we were able to open back up all the nets.  We banded 33 new birds along with 11 recaptures of 17 different species.  The highlight of the day was a Willow Flycatcher.  I have talked before about the difficulty of identifying Empidonax flycatchers especially the subtle differences between Alder and Willow Flycatchers.  Collectively, they are known as "Traill's" Flycatchers because they were once thought to be the same species.  These two species resemble each other so closely that the only way to tell them apart in the field is by their call.  Even in the hand, it is often impossible to separate the two.  Banders take a series of tedious measurements to identify them to species and most of the time there is too much overlap in those measurement to be 100% certain of the species.  We have banded 22 "Traill's" Flycatchers this season and we were finally able to identify one as a Willow Flycatcher!

- Aaron  

Willow Flycatcher (HY, sex unknown)

1 Willow Flycatcher
1 "Traill's" Flycatcher
2 White-eyed Vireo
5 Red-eyed Vireo
1 Veery
2 Gray Catbird
2 Yellow Warbler
1 Black-throated Blue Warbler
1 Palm Warbler (Western)
1 Prairie Warbler
1 American Redstart
11 Common Yellowthroat
1 Northern Waterthrush
3 Painted Bunting

1 Downy Woodpecker
1 White-eyed Vireo
1 Carolina Chickadee
1 Brown Thrasher
1 American Redstart
1 Common Yellowthroat
4 Painted Bunting
1 Northern Cardinal

# of Birds Banded:  33
# of Recaptures:  11
# of Species:  17
Effort:  100.0 net-hours
Capture Rate:  44.0 birds/100 net-hours
# of Nets:  20

1 comment:

  1. It's Official! Yea first Willow!
    Pam F.