Right now I'm a few hours north (in Burney) of my usually work sites, helping out the northern crew with some of their work. Still point counting, but no nest searching, and we do playback calls for a few indicator species. Camping in National Forests is still the best.
View from atop the toughest site I've done, which runs parallel to the PCT.
Banding was a great success yesterday, catching around 75 birds with nine nets, including 8 species of warbler (Yellow-rumped, Orange-crowned, Black-throated Gray, Townsend's, Macgillivray's, Wilson's, Hermit and Yellow), an Evening Grosbeak, a male Western Tanager, a Warbling Vireo, a bunch of Song Sparrows, and others.
My first Evening Grosbeak, surprisingly not bitey
Hermit and Townsend's
Male Macgillivray's. We had a few of these, but one of them is known to be at least 9 years old.
Amanda with a Stellar's Jay, hood up in response to the terrible mosquitoes, which were close to a first for us in the Sierras yesterday
Sleeping past 4 feels pretty good. I started point counting and nest searching on my own this week, which was mostly a success, but I only ended up with one nest, though it was the first Black-backed of the season:
Tomorrow, and a couple of days next week Amanda and I are going to help out the north crew with banding and demonstrations for a group of sixth graders. It should be interesting to see the banding site, which is right around this lake (Willow Lake):
And hopefully catch some of these:
Here's a quick look at our living situation before we fully moved in.
Our room. We now have raised cots, we're moving up in life!
Also, welcome to my office, burned Sierra landscape!
No internet, no blogging, sucks how that works. I've also not been taking my camera out much during training, so no pictures really either. After an excellent weekend in Minnesota with CUT, GUT and co. (which resulted in 17 hours of sleep over four nights...) I'm back in the Sierras and we've truly started the season. Up at four, point counting by six or seven, nest searching for woodpeckers til noon, and home by two. Starting tomorrow I'll be at least bringing the cameras in the truck and will see if it's going to be a rough, white-thorn kind of day, or something a little more open, and camera-lugging friendly.
We're moving! Tomorrow we'll be packing up and making our way down to our summer housing at the Berkeley Forestry Camp in Meadow Valley where we have a little duplex for our crew. Thursday I'm off to alumni weekend at Carleton. Dare I bring my camera? The internet situation in Meadow Valley is unclear at the moment, but from what I hear of past experiences the dial-up at the camp and frequent work-related camping excursions make my my blog posting a bit more sporadic.
Dan Lipp found this guy behind Ryan's house today, so I went out a-searching. And it took only five minutes or so as it was sticking very tightly to the dead bushes and rocky path, avoiding the willows and water on either side at all costs.
So instead of birding around the area working to improve all skills needed for the job, I spent the weekend fishing with Brent and Brent (odd name to have two to a crew, right?). Yesterday we made our way slowly through snow and mud to Willow Lake, and only came back with one tiny Rainbow Trout. Today with hit up Indian Creek near where it leaves Antelope Lake, taking back a few Brown and Rainbows. Not a lot of pictures being taken by me right now, so old, random ones will have to do for now.
With three giddy fishermen on the crew I decided this would be as good a summer as any to learn to fish, so I got a pole and a license and headed to a couple of lakes, though sadly we did not return with the hoped provisions for cinco de mayo fish tacos.
Butt Lake. No luck pulling fish out of the Butt.
We also did our first mock point counts today. This is, of course, one of our trouble birds, the Chipping Sparrow, sounding remarkably like Juncos.
A view from one of the burn sites we'll be working in.