Fall Migration is underway and while your birdfeeders will slow down as we approach October birdwatching will only get more interesting. Have your binoculars with you and ready because warblers are pouring through middle Tennessee stopping to feed in the early mornings on insects and berries. Mornings are the best time to see lots of different species of warblers. And mornings after a storm tend to be even better. Make time to visit one of the many great local birdwatching areas this fall to see some of them. For information about great places to birdwatch click on the links below…
- Tennessee Birding Trails is a great website for locating trails for specific types of birding.
- Tennessee Birding Facebook group has an active community of birders who post often.
- Tennessee Ornithological Society (TOS) Nashville Chapter is having their Radnor Lake Wed morning bird walks September 20th and continue each Wednesday through October 11th. Please meet in the west Parking lot outside the Visitor’s Center at 7:30am. Come rain or shine.
More on bird migration
A recent article in Birdwatching magazine describes studies of birds that make impressive journeys during migration. Researchers have found that the Connecticut Warbler is one of those birds. Scientists fitted 29 male Connecticut Warblers with geolocators at their breeding sites in Manitoba, Canada. A year later, they recaptured four of the birds and studied the data stored on their devices. The trackers provided clear evidence that the birds migrate nonstop over the Atlantic for at least 48 hours from the eastern shores of the U.S. to landing points on Cuba or Hispaniola. They fly for 48 hrs. without rest! That’s a total distance of 1,050 to 1,490 miles. After a stopover of five to seven days, the warblers flew over the Caribbean Sea in a single flight, covering 375 to 500 miles, to South America. They then continued into the Amazon basin. Another diminutive bird but a big time traveler is the Blackpoll Warbler. It currently is known to have the longest migration of any North American songbird. They make a nonstop flight south over the Atlantic Ocean each fall, from New England and eastern Canada to Caribbean islands. The marathon flight ranges from 1,410 to 1,721 miles and takes two to three days. Imagine that incredible journey. Both these birds measure less than 6” in length.
BINOCULAR SPECIAL $10 to $40 Off All In-Stock binoculars. Whether you need new binoculars for birding or for football games Nikon has a choice to fit your needs. September 22 thru September 28 stop by the shop and take advantage of these deals:
- Monarch 7 8x42 and 10x42 $40 Off Prostaff Compact 8x25 and 10x25 $10 Off
- Monarch 5 8x42 and 10x42 $25 Off Travelite Compact 8x25 and 10x25 $10 Off
- Prostaff 7 8x30 and 10x30 $15 Off Trailblazer Compact 8x25 $10 Off
- Prostaff 3 8x42 and 10x42 $10 Off Aculon 7x35 $10 Off
And About Hummingbirds
Hummingbird migration is definitely at, or on the back side of, its peak. Just two weeks ago hummingbirds were consuming nearly a gallon of nectar per day at my home in Pegram. After last week’s cool front and rain the numbers of hummingbirds at my feeders dropped to just a few. Interestingly, the hummingbirds we are seeing are choosing the big bunches of Salvia in the garden over the feeders. We may see Ruby-throated hummingbirds well into October so keep your feeders out with fresh nectar as there may be several waves of hummingbirds still coming through TN on their return to Central and South America. The belief that feeders should be taken down to cause the birds to migrate is incorrect. They will leave when they are ready whether there is a feeder present or not.