BBBS began the bird migration banding season with a bang this past week, handling 340 birds of 30 species in five days of trapping and banding!!!
Banded bird highlights include locally breeding Canada Warbler, Chestnut-sided Warbler, Blackburnian Warbler and Blue-headed Vireo plus long-distance migrants from the boreal forest such as Cape May Warbler, Bay-breasted Warbler and Tennessee Warbler. Special visitors to BBBS this week include NC endangered species Golden-winged Warbler and the rare migrant Yellow-bellied Flycatcher.
Waves of Tennessee Warblers washed over the ridge at Big Bald Band Banding Station early Saturday afternoon, keeping six visitors from the Erwin chapter of the Tennessee Ornithological Society busy with banding duties. Tennessee Warblers are the most numerous longest distance traveler stopping to feed and rest in the rich high-altitude grassy bald habitat at Big Bald. The southern Appalachian highlands serve as important stopover habitat for boreal breeders where they fuel up on the abundant insect population before continuing on their flight to Central and South America.