Saturday, October 20, 2012

Banded Palm Warbler

Our banding station group headed out to Ferndale Preserve to do a banding demo for a friend. That entry will have to go on my other blog once I get the rest of the photos edited. I will post an update to this blog when that is ready. This post is about a find on our way to take the net poles back to Lake Lotus.

We stopped at Ranch Road to look for the Say's Phoebe I have posted about in the past. This marks the 6th year this bird has come to stay the Winter far from its normal range. I have come by to see it every year. Today, however, it was hiding from us. Itis still there somewhere just not always easy to spot.

In its absence, I tried to find anything else that might be interesting. Hiding behind some structure I noticed a bird peeking out at us before flying off. It was a Eurasian Collared-Dove. I can't recall seeing any here before. Then another flew out, and another, until at least 8 birds took flight from their hiding place.

Eurasian Collared-Dove

Odd. The only other birds around were an American Kestrel way out on the fences and a small flock of Palm Warblers foraging in front of us. I figured I might as well take some shots. Nothing else to see.

Western Palm Warbler

As I processed the photos when I got home something caught my eye. Can you see it? Here, let me circle it.

Western Palm Warbler

Could that be what I think it is? I checked a few more photos. Here is the bird in a profile view.

Western Palm Warbler

Just to make extra sure, I enlarged this image and concentrated on the bird's leg. Yep. There is a band on this Palm Warbler!

Western Palm Warbler

In all my years banding birds, I can't recall ever seeing a small land bird with a band outside of my banding areas. So, was this bird banded far up North where they band a lot of Palm Warblers or could it be one we banded at Wekiva or Lake Lotus? I will never know for sure. But, I do know I always band the right leg when I band so it is possible it is one of ours.

Here I was taking pictures just at random and I find I got a photo of a bird of much note. I might have paid attention in the field if it would have let me know while we were there.

Western Palm Warbler

Oh, wait. Maybe it was trying to get my attention...

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