Stéphane’s Last Spring Season 2011 Posting

It is Summer!

It is definitively summer and the nets have been long furled one last time and put away. I didn’t get the chance earlier to send the last few noteworthy observations of Cabot Head, so here they are now. In the meadows (a mix of fen and alvar) near the station, I found a trove of feathers that I quickly identified as belonging to a Sandhill Crane! The crane was certainly predated and given the “evidence at the scene”, it was by a bird, most likely a Bald Eagle! Amazing to think of an eagle taking down a crane…

On our last morning of monitoring, the keen eyes of Glenn Reed spotted an unusual swallow: it looked all white on one side (the right) and white and rufous on the other! Soon, Theresa McKenzie and myself saw the bird as well: it had a tail like a Barn Swallow, but its back and wings were of a Tree Swallow. And the right side of its body (all white) was like a Tree Swallow, whereas the left was of a Barn Swallow!!! Very strange! It was flying among Barn Swallows and diving into the Gargantua with the others.

And then, that was it! It was the end of the migration monitoring and time to enjoy summer!

Hope to see you all back for the fall season, which, even if a lot of you guys don’t like it, starts in mid-August. It will still be summer then but birds will start streaming back south…

For now, let’s enjoy the sun, the heat, and the dog days of summer!