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So excited! Questions about bird banding.

November 15th, 2010, 05:27 PM
I just found out I was high bidder on a bird-banding opportunity that was offered as part of a fund-raiser for a local nature center. The banders will come out here on a day of my choosing to band the birds in the yard. I think they're going to be happy when they get here :D

Anyway, does anyone know if there are minimum conditions that have to be met for banding? In particular, I'm wondering if they can band in winter or if it's too cold then.

It's beginning to look like there might be a finch irruption this winter (we're already seeing more siskins than usual and last time that happened, we were overrun with redpolls later in the season :D). Thought that might be an interesting time to band if they can do it when it's cold.

But I have till next Halloween to use the certificate, and spring migration is a tempting is the adolescent season in summer...or even the beginning of fall migration... :o

Hmmmm...I might need some help deciding. Anyone have any faves?

November 15th, 2010, 06:13 PM
I am so happy for you, Hazel :grouphug:. So do they actually put a band on a bird's leg?

November 15th, 2010, 06:51 PM
Wow Hazel that sounds soooo awesome! I wonder though if they can band all birds? or do you think there will be some regulation or law that states what they can or cannot band?

I would almost be tempted to say fall migration because you never know what you could see?

I wonder how they will catch them?

I have always wanted to watch the falcons get banded in person rather than by video...

November 15th, 2010, 08:47 PM
That sounds so kewl! :lightbulb:

Are there any restrictions as to which breeds they are allowed to band? Think they can catch some of them there hummers? :D

November 15th, 2010, 10:25 PM
Whenever you do decide to have it done, can you take lots of pics please :D?

November 16th, 2010, 09:20 AM
I don't know anything about the costs associated with bird banding but I can tell you that it's very fun!

I have been involved in several bird banding stations here on PEI (We used mist nets here, not sure if that's what you will be using?).

2 of the stations were set up in the winter. So you would probably be able to do yours in the winter where your from.

But the fall migration can result in much more variety in bird species.

Either way, it's really fun and you get to see lots of birds up close.

November 16th, 2010, 09:23 AM
Just a warning though....woodpeckers and bluejays can peck very hard! They can even draw blood!

November 16th, 2010, 09:30 AM
How exciting Hazel!! I don't have anything useful for you, just wanted to say congratulations!! I would love to be a part of something like that :lovestruck: :D

Dog Dancer
November 16th, 2010, 10:27 AM
Now that sounds like an interesting adventure. What is the purpose of banding them (just for tracking??) and doesn't it kinda scare or stress them like crazy?? It would be neat though for someone like yourself who is so bird oriented to take part in something like this. Sorry I can't say when the best time to do it would be though as I'm a total dodo on birds... :D

November 16th, 2010, 10:31 AM
Yep, they actually band them, L4H. It's a tiny little aluminum (I think?) band with ID numbers so if you recover a band you know exactly where the bird was banded, when it was banded, and the general condition of the bird at the time it was banded. If we band our chickadees and nuthatches, I'll easily be able to spot the bands when they come to the feeders, and maybe even read the numbers :thumbs up

Not sure about restrictions on species. It might depend more on what size bands they have handy. I don't think we'll be banding hummers, klm, though we'd have the opportunity if I have them come out in the warm months. I'd be nervous handling such little guys so I'd probably have them string the mist nets outside of the major hummer flight paths.

Brown thrashers can deliver a good peck, too, Carolyn. :eek: And we may get jays and woodpeckers as well. But hazel is looking forward to it! :laughing: (what can I say, I'm weird :p)

I think I've reconsidered winter banding for irruptive finches. Someone I know from the yukon described the work involved when a large flock of redpolls, for example, hits the nets. We're only going to have a morning, and there will be just 4 of us as far as I know, so I really don't want to have to deal with 50 redpolls...or goldfinches, for that matter :eek:

I'm thinking maybe spring migration will be good, instead. It's more compact and easier to time than the fall migration around here and we get a lot of really nice species through here in mid-May (nice temps :D).

November 16th, 2010, 10:33 AM
Whenever you do decide to have it done, can you take lots of pics please :D?

You're kidding, right? Me? Take pics? Why would I do such a thing? :shrug:



Ya, I think you can pretty much count on madame hazel, unless she has her hands full of birds. :thumbs up :laughing:

November 17th, 2010, 11:13 AM
That is awesome Hazel.....a birdwatchers dream :thumbs up

November 17th, 2010, 11:23 AM
Hazel,how exciting,I would think spring would bee the best time.
I do not get half of the different birds you do,but I have more in the spring than right now.
If I spot anything different I grab for the binoculars and one of my bird-books,love them birds:lovestruck:

November 17th, 2010, 11:55 AM
That is going to be so awesome :cloud9::lovestruck::cloud9::lovestruck:. What a great opportunity. :thumbs up