Fall Banding: Hermit Thrushes and Winter Wrens

This Hermit Thrush is all banded and ready to be released to continue migrating south.

This Hermit Thrush is all banded and ready to be released to continue migrating south.

Migration proceeds in predictable order.  Wood Thrushes leave for the south before Swainson’s and Gray-cheeked and then the Hermit Thrushes start to migrate through.  House Wrens become scarce as Winter Wrens begin to show up more often.  So the arrival of the first Hermit Thrush signals to me the fact that summer is well and truly over.  The arrival of a Winter Wren is simply a delightful treat.  Both these birds were banded at our station on Thursday.

Within this tiny, drab body dwells an amazing song.

Within this tiny, drab body dwells an amazing song.

Both birds have outstanding songs.  When I hear the Hermit Thrush’s ethereal fluted notes echoing through the Maine woods, I stop whatever I am doing to listen in awe.  Heaven’s choirs cannot compare with this.  The Winter Wren has a huge song, bubbling and bursting from his tiny body in waves of apparent joy.  (click on the links and scroll down to find these songs).  For the birds, these songs serve as territorial defense and mate attractors, but to me, they are as close as I come to a religious experience.

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1 Response so far »

  1. 1

    Rachel said,

    and that is what a walk in the woods is all about, the wonders of Nature!

    Like


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