Thursday, April 5, 2007

The Pace of the Migration is Uneven.

But the progress of the migration is relentless. The pre-dawn walk was almost silent in the cool air. The weatherman was wrong about the wind. The predicted strong Northerlies had not materialized. Only a single Cardinal was heard across Long Creek from the residential plantings.
As I approached the Station, there was a call of a New England summer night--a Whip-poor-will--in the moonlight from the dry woodland along the Kingfisher Trail.
The nets yielded only four unbanded birds and three recaps--Hermit Thrush, Chickadee, Carolina Wren and Swamp Sparrow. Gnatcatchers were about; Parulas sang occasionally.
With time on my hands between net runs, I watched the Osprey pair. Again they were quiet. She stayed on the nest all morning save for a brief exercise flight and prompt return. And I watched her fuss about the nest on two occasions and move her head as to turn an egg. Yes, she is incubating. How many eggs I do not know.
The full moon had brought a very high tide to the salt marsh. And the change in weather had caused four Little Blue Herons (first of the year for First Landing) to drop in for a migratory rest. They never fed during the five hours I kept loose track of them. They moved thrice to keep their feet dry, allowing the Great Egrets, now three, to feed in the marsh along with two Great Blue Herons and nervous Kingfisher.
What a fine day.

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