|Banding of the Yellow Rail|
|Participants riding the combine|
|That's us disembarking the combine|
Even before we arrived at the rice fields Sharon and I found some other nice birds. Lots of Black-bellied Whistling-Ducks. There were thousands of Greater White-fronted Geese and Long-billed Dowitchers. Another 500 White-faced Ibis and lots of shorebirds, including Stilt Sandpipers, Black-necked Stilts and American Avocets.
|Some of the many Black-bellied Whistling-Ducks|
|Yellow-headed Blackbirds mixed in with other blackbirds|
The bird banders were out in full force on the second day and there were nets up everywhere. They had a tough job because once the combine made a pass along one or two rows of rice they would have to carry the nets to a new location closer to the uncut rice areas. It was also interesting to watch the banders who were on the opposite side of the uncut fields from the nets. They had butterfly nets and when a rail would flush in their direction and land in the cut sections of the field they would chase it down and catch it with the butterfly nets. They had a banner day today with Soras. We watched as they banded both Soras and Virginia Rails. I was able to release one after banding.
|Al with Sora|
|Notice white secondaries of the rail|