21818Matador Area Birds
- Dec 4, 2011I can add Prairie Falcon and American Goldfinch to the winter list.
One of two PRFAs yesterday was along the Matador Road, a probable adult female that I see often and can't tempt. The other was a probable juvenile sitting motionless on the antenna of the Pioneer elevator in Kyle and scaring the dickens out of the pigeons returning to roost on the roof.
I now have two American Goldfinches coming to my feeders, joining several redpolls and the two Blue Jays (the BLJAs are nothing if not persistent -I've caught one of them three times and the other four times as I try to trap magpies for banding).
Most years the Snowy Owls that we catch are in good to excellent shape, which is supports the theory that, without predator/prey imbalance, only the fittest owls are going to think about making the long trip from the Arctic. This year however, the high number of juveniles we are encountering suggests a good owl hatch and not enough lemmings to sustain them. It appears some of the young owls are being forced to head south. And, some of them are losing condition on the way. Five out of six juveniles encountered so far have been underweight. A juvenile female that I caught yesterday weighed just 1330 grams, little more than half of a good condition bird.
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