2015 Year-end Recap of MAPS - Our 26th Season at JBWS

-- We banded a total of 113 birds/26 species, tying our 4th best season since we went to our current 14-net protocol in 2004. Our 11-year average under this protocol is 100 birds/24 species per season. For more recent comparisons, in 2012 we had 125/24; in 2013, 155/33; and in 2014, 113/31.

-- We added two new species to this station’s banding list: Mourning Dove and Orchard Oriole. While Mourning Doves are common to JBWS, they are not typically observed within our MAPS study area. This particular Mourning Dove was born this breeding season and may have been dispersing from its nesting site elsewhere at Jug Bay when it was caught in our MAPS net. The ASY/M Orchard Oriole banded at Net 17 on 30 June was probably not a breeder within our MAPS study area but rather a transient through the area.

-- Our station’s banding total since 1990 is now 3,103 birds/66 species. Our milestone 3,000th banded bird was a Red-eyed Vireo (AHY/M) banded by Mike Quinlan at Net 16 during the 0930 round on 26 May 2015. Break out the champagne!

-- Other significant/interesting bandings include:

  • Eastern Wood-Pewee/7 – our most ever, we average <2 per season since 2004
  • Great-crested Flycatcher/1 – our 4th since 1990, and this was our 3rd consecutive year that we have  banded a Great-crested Flycatcher, which suggests that they have become regular breeders in our MAPS study area
  • Eastern Kingbird/1 – only our 4th since 1990, frequently seen outside our MAPS study area along the Railroad Bed Trail
  • Red-bellied Woodpecker/2 – since 2004 we average <1 per season; these were our first since 2009
  • Carolina Wren/1 – since 2004 we average ~7 per season. While year-round resident Carolina Wrens are greatly impacted by severe winter weather conditions, I don’t recall the weather being so severe this past winter as to explain the paucity of Carolina Wrens this past breeding season
  • Acadian Flycatcher/20 – 2nd most since 2004; in 2012 we banded 24
  • Wood Thrush/22 – most since 2004, previous high was 21 in 2010.

-- Most of the other species were near their 11-year averages.

-- Our top four highest number of bandings: Wood Thrush/22,  Acadian Flycatcher/20, Red-eyed Vireo and Northern Cardinal/8 each, and Eastern Wood-Pewee and Ovenbird/7 each.

-- One key aspect of the MAPS Program is to monitor avian productivity of select species or how many young they produce per breeding season. Since 2004, hatch-year birds on average account for about 26% of our bandings (range: 18-35%). This year we had 29 hatch-year birds/11 species which accounted for 26% of our bandings—right at the historical average. Not surprisingly, Acadian Flycatcher/7 and Wood Thrush/6 were the top hatch-year species.  

-- Another key aspect of the MAPS effort is monitoring survivorship of select species or how many years will they live. We learn this by recaptures of birds banded in previous years. Jug Bay is one of the longest continuing MAPS efforts within the program. Our recapture data over 26 years of operation provides valuable data for avian researchers. The earliest banded recapture was a Red-eyed Vireo we initially banded on 24 June 2007 and subsequently recaptured in 2008/1X, 2009/2X and 2010/1X. We had another Red-eyed Vireo recapture that we initially banded on 24 May 2008 with only one previous recapture in 2009. Historically, the Red-eyed Vireo species has shown the greatest longevity of any other that we band at Jug Bay.

Thanks to our many volunteers who assisted in our MAPS effort this past season. Your assistance is invaluable.

While I was unavailable for most of this past season, I hope to see you at the start of our 27th season sometime in late May 2016.

—Sandy Teliak