May 9 – first day of banding!

All 4 of us banded at Willow Wind today with Bob. I opened nets 3 and 4 and was by far the last one done because it took me a minute to find the poles at 4 and the poles at 3 were missing! So I was all stressed out to start. And then I got no birds on my first two net runs. I was so sad. Everyone else had birds! The first two birds in my hand were both recaps (recaptures = birds that already have a band) – a song sparrow and a bushtit. The bushtit was so small I could hardly hold it! Like a cottonball! And then the first bird I got to extract was a female Bullock’s oriole! And I extracted a male too! And then I got to see a freaking male western tanager in the hand!! And blackbirds, mourning dove, bewick’s wren, scrub jay, flicker. It was so exciting! I of course have a lot to learn, but things are making sense, so I’m not worried.


May 8 – I meant to write sooner…

It’s been days, I know. I meant to write yesterday but I didn’t drink any coffee all day so I was unenthused about most things. I am admitting I have a problem. We set up WOOD (Wood River site) and I heard a sora rail for the first time which was pretty exciting, they have such a cool sound. There were also tree swallows, goldfinches, yellow warblers. On the way was a beautiful bald eagle perched and we drove past pasture after glowing green pasture with really beautiful cows – their coats seem so healthy, so deeply colored, their ears so fuzzy looking, I can’t stop admiring them! I wonder I they look different than Cold Creek cows because of the environment here or if they don’t actually look different at all. It took about an hour but I changed my oil myself. Then I went to Medford for about the 3rd day in a row with Eva to visit REI and get sonic shakes – half price after 8! I went to bed too late for about the 6th night in a row and got up late for about the 6th morning in a row.

I meant to write the day before yesterday but we had to finish clearing 7 Mile (one of our banding sites) and then spend all afternoon in Medford exchanging waders and waiting for Louiza & Pedro’s flight to land. On the way to 7 Mile we saw an owl perched on a tree near mile marker 7! At quick glance it looked like spotted but I guess it could have been barred. I was driving the stick and I’m not to good at stopping quickly so I scared it away before we got a better view, oops. We saw Canada Goose goslings in Medford and Eva got so excited because she’s never seen them before and they’re adorable, so I did a U turn on the highway and went after ‘em. We got Thai food and drove through downtown Medford which we were delighted to know exists.

I meant to write the day before but we spent allll day in Medford running errands and getting the wrong waders. We set up what we could at cabin. And I reinstalled the mailbox after installing it so badly the day before that the mailman left a note saying it sucked.

I meant to write the day before that but we were busy setting up Odessa and 7 Mile where I heard a bald eagle and Cassin’s vireo. And then we went morel hunting on Rocky Pt Rd. Then we played cribbage until after 10pm while it rained and thundered beyond the cabin walls.

I mean to write the day before but we were busy unpacking the kitchen and organizing and picking up Lulu (the Toyota).

I meant to write the day before but I arrived in Klamath Falls so late at night after shenanigans in Shasta.

Tonight I’m in Ashland at Emigrant Lake for the night. We set up Willow Wind today and have our first day of banding there tomorrow! I’m excited, but also nervous and anxious. I became a mother on Mothers Day – one of the seeds in my garden sprouted! I can’t even tell you how excited I was. Although my kombucha is looking funny, not sure about my sour dough, and my sauerkraut is floating.