Friday, October 16, 2015

Banding on Jekyll Island

On October 14, I visited Jekyll Island Banding Station (JIBS).  JIBS has been around since the late 1970’s. The data that they gather has been invaluable to understand how migratory bird use Jekyll Island.  Over the years, the data show that the south end of Jekyll is so important to birds traveling along the coast. It offers food, water, and shelter for these birds. Palm Warblers, Common Yellowthroats, American Redstarts and Black-throated Blue Warblers are the main warblers that use this area in late September, but there are always surprises. Plus every year is different. 
 There were Tree Swallows swarming around the wax myrtles then dropping near the swallow water pools.

On the path to the station there were Western Palm Warblers feeding in the grasses.

I got to the station, and there was a Road Scholars Group listening to Charlie Muise was showing them some of the birds banded at the station. Here he is with a Blue-throated Blue Warbler female. He is a wealth of knowledge. I know these eager birders learned a lot about birds.
But these Road Scholar got another lesson when the folks studying snakes for the Georgia Sea Turtle Center.  They were very willing to add to the experience of this group. This habitat is important to a wide range of creatures and each creature is important in the habitat. 

Evan Pitman is the Master bander at the station. Here he is working with a Common Ground Dove.
Here is Evan is working with a Bay-breasted Warbler. This is a common bird at the station.
Heather Pitman is holding the Bay-breasted Warblers for record photos.

Meghan Davies is an Americorps Intern at the Georgia Sea Turtle Center and on her days off she likes to go birding. She helped me with some plover work this summer. I told her about the station and she volunteered. She can now add this to her resume.
What fun to see this station continuing to add to our knowledge of this area.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

My Lifer Red-footed Booby

Tuesday morning October 6, Tim Keyes called and said, "I have a booby sitting on the St. Simons Pier." Well, I am only 2 miles from that pier. When I walked up Tim and Bob were there watching this large fawn colored booby with dull orange feet sitting right in front of us. My goodness! It has been a while since I had a life bird, but this Red-footed Booby was going to be added to my list.
It was a strangely beautiful colored bird.  It was pretty beaten up from flying in the storm Joaquin. Here a few pictures of this amazing bird.

It was a big bird.

Monday, October 12, 2015

A busy week ending with Shorebird Survey

Willa with her siblings and parent 
It has been a busy last few weeks. First there was the Georgia Ornithological Society meeting where I got a chance to preview “Willa’s Grand Adventures,” children’s book. It was well received. There were some good suggestions on how to smooth out some transitions.

During the week, I had to prepare the etching press for it debut as a teaching tool at Glynn Visual Art Center.  The press and I had our first printmaking workshop on Sunday. You can read about that workshop at
This one is banded. This was at the south end at the end of September . Will it stay for the winter

This one wasn't banded but was hanging with the banded plover
On Saturday morning, Breanna and I were out at dawn for our International Shorebird Survey. It was overcast, and there wasn’t as much bird activity. However, we were treated to three Piping Plovers.  Here a few pictures. Enjoy.  
A happy plover watcher watching a happy plover.