Thursday, April 14, 2011


"I never for a day gave up listening to the songs of our birds, or watching their peculiar habits, or delineating them in the best way I could."
~John James Audubon

I spent a recent Saturday with two good friends at Ft. Morgan, Alabama at the bird banding station. Each year for two weeks, thousands of Neo-tropical migrant birds are captured at Ft. Morgan. These birds represent thousands of species, including large numbers of Ruby-throated hummingbirds. Ft. Morgan is the first landfall and the last departure point for thousands of migrating birds. The birds are measured, weighed, banded and released. This is an excellent opportunity to monitor population levels and the general condition of migrant birds, as well as gaining important insights into the effects of weather on bird migration. We had a great time at the banding station and lot's of fun walking unchartered trails at the Fort.

The highlight of the day for me was seeing a male, adult Painted Bunting up close and personal. It is an incredibly beautiful bird.

Adult male Painted Bunting.

 I don't think my photo does justice to the colors of this small beauty.

This little Barn Swallow was so calm while ...

... the gentle volunteer explained some of the identifying markers of the bird. Actually, all of the birds were amazingly calm. It was almost as if they new they were in good hands.

OK, so maybe his feathers got a little ruffled.

Another favorite of mine. I've never seen a Ruby-throated Hummingbird in person before. 

I was so amazed at the perfectly scalloped feathers that made up its throat.

And if these feathers weren't beautiful enough, they were also irridescent!


  1. Stunningly beautiful little creatures. The painted bunting is amazing but the hummer takes my heart.

  2. I'm so glad you had a great day!!! Don't know if I'll make it over there this banding session or not. If I don't, I'll aim for the fall. I want to hold one of those little birds in my hand!!!

  3. I am completely delighted with this post. What a wonderful day you had. Oh how much i wish I was there and to have one of those lovely and so cute little birds in my hadnd. These photos are absolutely wonderful! :-)

  4. Thank all. The birds were definitely the highlight of the day, but I had an awesome time.


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