This week’s report comes to us from the Bird Banding Laboratory. Herring Gull K12 was banded as a chick on July 2011 near the Radar Tower (see “Map of Appledore Island” tab). K12 headed all the way to Fort Meyers, Florida where it was observed by David Ward on January 2, 2012. We have very few observations of Appledore gulls from the Gulf, so this is an exciting addition to the database! Thanks to Ward for reporting his observation to the Bird Banding Lab.
In other news, we’re getting geared up for more gull banding this Spring. During the week of May 21 – 28, a rugged and dedicated group of wranglers will be on Appledore catchin’ gulls. This year’s team includes old pros (Bill Clark, Justin Stilwell, Tracy Holmes, David Bonter) and two new additions: Kelsey Piel and Kristin Cantele. Kelsey and Kristin are both undergraduate students at Cornell University. Regarding her interest in banding gulls, Kristin had this to say:
I am an Animal Science major in the Cornell University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences who has a deep interest in ecology. Through an exotic avian husbandry course at Cornell, I was introduced to the idea of banding birds of prey for captive and migratory purposes. This topic piqued my interest in migratory research in avian species, so I began to look for opportunities that would expose me more to this field of study. When I found out about your project, I had to get involved, which is why I am coming to Shoals this May!
And, from Kelsey:
I’m a sophomore, majoring in Animal Science at Cornell University. I was looking for unique and stimulating research and was very excited when I came across this wonderful opportunity to contribute to ongoing research at Shoals! I became interested in the study of birds through a tropical field ecology and behavior course in Kenya and an exotic avian husbandry course. Coastal ecology will be an entirely new field for me, and learning about it through immersion in the research of Herring Gulls and Great Black-backed Gulls in their natural habitat is an amazing opportunity. I look forward to learning more about banding and tracking gulls and their behaviors in coastal communities with Dr. Ellis!
Kudos to Justin Stilwell who met Kelsey during a visit to Cornell and somehow convinced her to endure (I mean…. enjoy!) the challenges of gull banding. And, thanks to Kelsey for convincing her classmate Kristin to participate too! We look forward to working with you this Spring.