The last three days have been busy on Southeast Farallon Island! On October 1st, the weather suddenly changed, and birds have been raining from the sky ever since. We’ve been running to keep up with the migrant wave. What a change from last week!
In the last three days, 16 species of warblers arrived, including Magnolia, Blackburnian, Black-throated Blue, Palm, Tennessee, Canada, Chestnut-sided, American Redstart, and Ovenbird. We’ve also had a Bobolink, Clay-colored Sparrow, and, rarest of all, an Evening Grosbeak this morning (the last one occurred here in 1979). We banded most of these birds, and I got a chance to play with my new macro camera lens.
It’s pretty weird to see these birds picking around on rocky cliffs or crammed together in one of the three trees on the island. They often land first on the lighthouse, on its railings, or even clinging to its vertical cement walls. Overall, about 60 species arrived in this wave. Most of them will probably be gone tomorrow: the wind shifted back north this afternoon, the clouds blew out, and we’re forecast for two days of slow conditions before another front hits on Wednesday.