PIBO Migration Summary

May 1st – 10th, 2013


Hood Warbler


It was another busy and enjoyable ten days of migration coverage at the Point and lots of birds were recorded throughout the summary period. A week of southerly winds at the start of the month made for a steady stream of migrants and it remained active right through to the 10th. In all, thirty-eight spring ‘firsts’ were tallied including 15 warbler spp., and 164 birds of forty species were banded. Although the banding remained quite slow, there were lots of birds in the netting area including ‘Brewster’s’ and Golden-winged, along with a banded Hooded and Orange-crowned. The weather was extremely consistent, with dawn temperatures ranging from 9° to 16° C, and just one morning of north winds. Daily diversity peaked on May 9th when 78 species were recorded during the official count period, and dipped to a low of 53 on the 5th.


The month started off with a good pulse of activity, with ten new arrivals on May 1st including Ruby-throated Hummingbird, Least Flycatcher, Yellow-throated Vireo, Northern Parula, and Scarlet Tanager, among others. Nine warbler species were noted, with 47 Yellow-rumps and 27 Palms leading the way. While not as many species were on hand on the 2nd, a good reverse flow of birds off the point on the census included 140 Yellow-rumps, 33 Palms, and 14 Nashvilles. Six Blue-headed Vireos were captured along with ones-and-twos of five warbler spp. New arrivals included Cape May Warbler, Blackburnian Warbler, and Eastern White-crowned Sparrow.


Another busy day on May 3rd saw 62 species tallied during the count period and 28 birds banded of sixteen species. Eight spring ‘firsts’ were reported including an early banded Blackpoll and Wilson’s Warbler. Yellow-rumps and Nashville Warblers were active again – 75 and 60 individuals were recorded, respectively. A nice mix of 68 species was documented on the 4th. While activity on the lake was limited to just five waterfowl species, woodland birds were numerous, with fourteen warbler spp. observed along with moderate numbers of six thrush spp., 4 swallow spp., and ones-and-twos of Bald Eagle, Red-tailed Hawk, hummingbirds, kingfisher, Red-breasted Nuthatch, and the season’s first Bobolinks.      


East winds dominated over the next three days and activity tapered off somewhat from the 5th – 7th, although a few shorebirds made their first appearance including Black-bellied Plover and Lesser Yellowlegs. The first Red-eyed Vireos and Common Yellowthroats appeared on the 5th and a Northern Mockingbird was recorded on May 6th. Migrant numbers bounced back on the 8th when 69 species were noted in the official count area including a Sora at Fox Pond, the first Indigo Buntings of the spring, and moderate numbers of nine warbler spp.


May 9th proved to be the busiest morning of the summary period when 78 species were noted including ‘firsts’ for Black-throated Blue Warbler and Gray-cheeked Thrush. Fifteen warbler species were documented and a White-eyed Vireo was banded. Steady rain on the evening of the 9th was followed by a rather lacklustre start to the day on May 10th, but migrants picked up as the morning wore on and six hours of coverage produced 61species. A Black-billed Cuckoo was new for the spring and fourteen warblers were detected on census and in the netting area, including the second captured male Hooded Warbler of the summary period.  


PIBO’s next  summary will be posted on May 22nd.


Photo: Sumiko Onishi