I forgot to post a couple of photos from Friday's banding. A sparrow came into the nets and at first glance wasn't easily identifyable. Here is the sparrow in question:
Sibley, Peterson and even Pyle (the really big gun) were brought in to try and figure out what the sparrow was. It turned out, after some debate to be a Lincoln's, but it was fun to watch the boys work through the identification. They love a good mystery.
This past weekend was all rain, all the time--a beautiful rain: the sound of the water falling down the gutters and splashing in our ally (I love that sound), combined that with the soft, bright green glow of leaves emerging from buds on the trees and then on sunday, the trilling of yellow-rumped warblers, but not much bloggable material there. Non Birding Bill and I spent the weekend "reestablishing our pair bond" and that's not really blogable either. About the only thing I can safely report is that I made a rhubarb pie and is was spectacular (no strawberries, no raspberries, just pure unadultorated rhubarb...well, there was some sugar adulorating it).
I have a file that I keep in my email folder of items people send me so if I don't have much to blog about personally, I can at least have an interesting update. Up first, Mike Hendrickson was kind enough to send me a photo of one of the weird rabbits of Duluth (right). For those that don't know, about 15 years ago someone released several domesticated rabbits along Park Point in Duluth and they bred like...well, like rabbits. Now they even hybridize with the Eastern Cottontails. I have always been perplexed by this because Duluth is such a hot spot for raptor migration. This is the place that once got over 100,000 broad-winged hawks flying over in one day. Granted, most of the birds are passing through, but quite a few do make it to Park Point to feed. How a bunch of white furry targets never got wiped out by hawks just baffles me. These rabbits are saavy. A few years ago a congressman hired some guys with nets to trap the rabbits. Mike tells me that they didn't net a single one, and all the residents were upset that their yards were trampled by the folks with the nets. The congressman lost his position over it. Ooopsie.
Speaking of rabbits, I know you're waiting for a big ole disapproval from Cinnamon, but NBB found a rabbit that may have out disapproved her in the form of the sulking bunny snowcone. She's gone back to her hutch to work on her look. She's watching Zoolander for inspiration.
NBB also sent a link to Shawn Kielty's blog who has some cool photos of a red-tailed hawk nest. NBB periodically checks links to my blog and found a link from Shawn's saying that my rabbits make him gag. Boy if rabbits make him gag, I don't even want to think about what would happen if he were faced with something truly gag worthy like vulture or pelican vomit.
Rick Hollis sent me a photo of a junco who regularly feeds on his hanging feeders (left). This was in reference to my surprise of a junco on my second story ledge during a snow storm. Most juncos are not fond of hanging feeders and tend to feel more comfortable on the ground. Every now and then a juncoes disregards what is written about its feeding habits and buck tradition by feeding on a feeder and not underneath. You go, junco, you go.
Don't forget that this Saturday is the Raptor Release for The Raptor Center at Carpenter Nature Center. It should be gorgeous weather and you can see eagles, hawks, owls, falcona and a vulture up close and personal, watch birds that have recovered in clinic be set free and come hang with me at the binocular booth, I'll be selling binoculars as a fundraiser for TRC. You can try them out or just shoot the breeze. It's bound to be a good time.