Western Great Lakes Bird and Bat Observatory

Headquarters at Forest Beach Migratory Preserve

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Bird Banding - Spring 2017

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After Second-year male Scarlet Tanager; Photo by Lora Loke

Al Sherkow and his team had a very good WGLBBO banding day on Wednesday, May 10th. Jana, Lora, Dave and Al banded 97 birds of 29 species; including 8 warbler species! Highlights include a ASY/M (ASY/M is the bander's code for "after second year/male") Scarlet Tanager, a Red-headed Woodpecker, and an Eastern Meadowlark.

Hermit Thrush            3
Wood Thrush              1
Ruby-crowned Kinglet    18
Brown-headed cowbird     2
Red-winged blackbird     3
Eastern Meadowlark       1
Scarlet Tanager          1
Red headed Woodpecker    1
Hairy Woodpecker         1
Gray Catbird             2
Brown Thrasher           1
White-throated Sparrow  15
Swamp Sparrow           10
Savanna Sparrow          1
Song Sparrow             2
Clay-colored Sparrow     3
Orange-crowned Warbler   1
Yellow-rumped (Myrtle) Warbler           3
Palm Warbler (Western)    2
Black and white Warbler  4
American Redstart        1
Northern Waterthrush     1
Common Yellowthroat      3
Ovenbird                 5
American Goldfinch       5
American Robin           1
House Wren               1
Black capped Chickadee   4
Blue headed Vireo        1

Bird Banding - Fall 2016

  2016 Fall Banding

Sixteen volunteers helped our three primary banders to operate the banding station for this year's Spring and Fall migration. Net locations were added in the "grassland area" and in the “oak savanna area". New species captured in these nets include Dickcissel and Sedge Wren. We will likely add more net locations in 2017.

Through our banding we have shown that FBMP, as was intended, is being used as stopover habitat by a variety of migrating warblers, thrushes, sparrows, and other species. Recapture data shows some of these birds remain for a week or more. Jana Viel began banding during the 2016 breeding season, and when we study that data, we’ll better understand which species, especially the migrant species, are also breeding at FBMP

Bird Banding - Spring 2016

Our banding station, operated by master bander Al Sherkow, Vicki Piaskowski, Stephanie Beilke, and with help from Jana Viel, Robin Squier, Diane Weaver, Marsha Weaver, Corinne Palmer, Judy Kistler, Dave Sikorski, Lora Loke, Mary Mirasola, Marsha Weaver, Ryan Lancour, Dick Noccolai, Marty Pfeifer, Maria Terres, Danny Pirtile, Alicia Schultz, and Mickey O'Conner have completed spring 2016 season. More than 400 volunteer hours have been put into this growing effort. The fall 2016 banding season begins in late August. Contact us for more information.

Bird Banding - Fall 2015

bandingWGLBBO has completed another season of fall banding at Forest Beach Migratory Preserve. Al Sherkow, our master bander, had help from Vicki Piaskowski, Stephanie Beilke, Bryan Lenz, Michael Schlotfeldt, Robin Squier, Natalie Miller, Lora Loke, Judi Kistler, Tom Schaefer, and me this season. 300+ birds were processed, with our peak day at 73 birds.

Totals for the season; top 6 species banded:

  • Swainson's Thrush 35
  • Yellow-rumped Warbler 34
  • Golden-crowned Kinglet 23
  • White-throated Sparrow 22
  • American Redstart 21
  • Magnolia Warbler 18

Bird Banding - Fall 2014

IMG 4484 smWGLBBO's banding station was in operation throughout autumn 2014, and is due to commence in late April 2015 for the spring season.  Stephanie Beilke (UW-Green Bay) is the chief bander. A total of 443 birds were banded at Forest Beach Migratory Preserve, representing 50 species. The top six bird species banded in terms of total numbers of individuals were White-throated Sparrow (56), Yellow-rumped “Myrtle” Warbler (43), Dark-eyed “Slate-colored” Junco (34), American Redstart (29), Hermit Thrush (25), and Black-capped Chickadee (25).

The most unique capture was a Western Wood-Pewee, a vagrant from the western United States, banded on 10/9/2014. This observation was reported to the Wisconsin Society of Ornithology Records Committee, and documentation for this species was also added to our eBird checklist for October 9th. If this record is accepted, it will be only the third individual of this species ever recorded in Wisconsin.