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Wisconsin Kirtland's Warbler Update
June 12, 2009
Adams County Monitoring
There have been no major developments at the Adams County nesting site in the past week. Most Kirtland’s warbler females are probably laying and starting incubation at this time. Nick has continued his careful observations to confirm nesting, and so far has found two nests, one of which has a full clutch of 5 Kirtland’s warbler eggs. There continues to be two unbanded males at the site, so the total number of birds known to be present remains at 9 males and 8 females.
We expect to make another effort to capture and place color bands on Kirtland’s warbler males some time next week. So far we have two unbanded males at the Adams County site which we will target for capture, and two additional birds at other sites (see below).
USDA Wildlife Specialist Barry Benson reports that over the past week, he removed an additional 21 cowbirds from the three cowbird traps. Through June 5, a total of 293 cowbirds have been captured, consisting of 214 males and 79 females. This week, only one of the 21 birds captured was a female. Hopefully, this indicates that few females are present to parasitize Kirtland’s warbler nests. We plan to continue cowbird trapping for at least one more week.
Over 40 Wisconsin volunteers began their efforts to find new Kirtland’s warbler sites this past weekend. The annual Kirtland’s Warbler census in Michigan is conducted from June 6-15, and we intentionally planned Wisconsin surveys to also occur during this period. On Tuesday, one male Kirtland’s warbler was found at a new site in Adams County, and just today, a female was also confirmed at this site. The male is not banded, so we will plan to target this bird for capture next week. Another volunteer recently re-located a bird he had seen several weeks ago at a Marinette County site, but which had not been seen since. We will also attempt to capture this bird for banding next week. As of today, we know of a total of 12 male Kirtland’s warblers in Wisconsin, and at least 9 females. Anyone finding a Kirtland’s warbler is asked to contact either Joel or Kim at the e-mails and telephone numbers listed below.