Stéphane’s Posting for Oct. 03, 2011

The Siskin Hordes!

They have arrived, descending from the confines of the Boreal Forest, eager for new lands and new food sources. And nothing, nothing can stop them! The hordes of Pine Siskins are now roaming the trees of Cabot Head, arriving in huge flocks as October started!

Today, October 3, we estimated at more than a thousand Siskins flying around the station, in and out trees like feathered clouds. From time to time, they all rose together and flew in changing tight formations, sometime as compact as a ball, sometime elongated like a ribbon. It was quite a sight!

In their frenzy, they sometimes fly low and close to the nets: this is when the “siskin party” begins! Because they don’t like to be lonely very rarely that only one siskin gets caught in the nets; it always brings company!

So, yesterday, we got our nets filled up a couple time, with a total of 59 Siskins banded. But today, oh! today, it was even more. The grand total was of 106! At closing time (1:00 PM), our first net was sagging under the weight of 75 Pine Siskins!!! It was insane!!!!!!!!!!! (yes, that many exclamation marks) Fortunately, there is a good crew at the station and they were all processed efficiently and safely!