MO River Ends Spring Banding as MAPS in Prairies Begins

MRBO spring banding station under water from the Missouri
River. The flooding forced us to end our season three days early

     We have accomplished a great deal of work in the month since our last post. Banding of birds in Spring Migration ended three days earlier than scheduled when the Missouri River began to inundate our banding station area as well as a few net lanes.
     Overall, we banded a similar number of birds as we did last year in the spring of 2010. Even though we banded a few new species, the diversity of birds was slightly less than last spring. Adjustments in net placement after analysis of net productivity showed early signs of significant daily increase in capture rate, but when peak migration was occurring we had relentless high wind speeds from the south. Winds forced us to close early, not open at all, and makes it more likely that the birds can escape the nets.
     The actual numbers of individual species will be posted soon after we enter and begin analysis of our 1,040 banded birds of 69 species.
     We look forward to see what the data yields after further analysis, especially in regards to age, sex, molt, fat, and muscle. These factors are interesting and in some cases ground breaking. We’ll continue to collect this data, albeit slightly more detailed at our MAPS (Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship) banding location in three prairies near Sedalia.

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