Wednesday, March 4, 2015

More migrants reported back

A trickle of migrants have been reported returning to southern Louisiana, joining the Purple Martins that have been back for some weeks.

Two flocks of Swallow-tailed Kites were reported moving east through St. Tammany.  These are freshly back from crossing the Gulf, and may be headed east to Florida where their nesting population densities are higher than in our neck of the woods.  Another was reported from Avery Island.  They are often reported back in March, and will continue passing through April, with some staying to nest on the North Shore.

Hummingbird guru Nancy Newfield reports that two male Rubythroats have visited her study areas- another typical March returnee, although her normal first returns are not until March 10.

Finally, a male Indigo Bunting was reported back in New Iberia.  This species will not peak until next month, when it will be arguably our most common migrant.

There are probably birds coming in across the Gulf this afternoon, since these nice tailwinds extend to the Yucatan (from whence they often depart) and up thousands of feet (where they usually fly when migrating).  It is common for the males of a species to migrate first in spring, so they are likely mostly of that sex.  From here, migration will gradually build until it peaks in late April. 

Good birding,


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