Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Indiana Audubon Fall Festival - Bird Banding and More

After a rather slow morning of birding at Michigan City Harbor, Mount Baldy, and West Beach we headed back to the Indiana Dunes State Park for a short IAS membership meeting and then the afternoon presentations. The first presenter was a young birder from Berrian County, Michigan. Her name is Allison Vilag and she gave a fantastic presentation on what it is like to be a young birder.

Shortly after her presentation was over, John Kendall talked for a few minutes about a new shorebird project at a stormwater basin called McCool Pool. While the site is currently not favorable to shorebirds, it does host many migrating Nelson's and LeConte's Sparrows. After the short talk, the group headed over to McCool Pool. Even though it was raining quite hard, we found at least six Nelson's Sparrows and one LeConte's Sparrow.

The evening ended with a dinner and presentation about the birds of the Indiana Dunes by Ken Brock. The next morning, we hit a few more spots along the lake and then headed to IDSP again to watch some bird banding. This was definately the highlight of the weekend. Right when we got there, Brad Bumgardener, one of the naturalists at IDSPm was banding a White-throated Sparrow. The next bird up was a Brown Creeper. It was amazing to see how small these birds really are! We banded a few more species and then listened to a great presentation about Goose Pond FWA by Lee Sterrenburg.

Below are a few of my favorite pictures from the bird banding demonstration.

Brown Creeper
A Brown Creeper shortly before being released.

White-breasted Nuthatch
A White-breasted Nuthatch banded and ready to be released.

White-throated Sparrow
Brad showing all of us the wing of a White-throated Sparrow.


Larry Jordan said...

Awesome photos of the bird banding birds Rob! I must say that to see a Brown Creeper up close and personal like that would be amazing.

As you know, those little guys move so quickly up and down tree trunks that they are a real challenge to photograph much less actually see well in the shade of the trees where we usually observe them. To see your photo of the Brown Creeper in the hand, in full light is a real treat!

Thanks for sharing it with us.

eileeninmd said...

Wonderful photos ! It must have been fun watching the birds up close while being banded.

Kelly said...

...ahhhhh....beautiful photos of beautiful birds. I love seeing the Brown Creepers. I didn't realize they were that tiny. Seeing them in the hand makes a huge difference. Sounds like you had a fantastic birding weekend!

diane b said...

So many birds, so much information, I'm a beginner.Love the photos of the little birds being banded.