22 May 2009

Widow Bagged at Black Swamp…(Black Swamp Bird Observatory, Magee Marsh, Ohio)…21 May 2009

Another day where warblers abandoned Magee and so we distracted ourselves with the gritty business of working out the flycatchers that have now checked into Magee’s woods. This all paled though when the call came in that they had netted a nifty nightjar at the Black Swamp Bird Observatory. A few screaming cars later and we watched mesmerized as one of the top ringers paraded a chunky Chuck-wills-widow in front of us, and our cameras went into overdrive. A first record for the banders at the observatory, others having been heard very rarely in the area, and very occasionally being seen around the boardwalk in the past, but had as yet avoided their heavily loaded nets completely. A red letter day for birders and banders alike. A large and impressive “goatsucker” of note. A long time ago birds from the nightjar family like the Chuck’s were bizarrely and very wrongly believed to suckle goats at night!

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