Athough it was cloudy and cool, at least the rain held off this morning for a bird banding event today. I have always been curious and wanted to learn more so when I saw the event scheduled I signed up as an observer.
All the handlers were very knowledgeable and readily shared information on the procedures for collecting data on the birds. Each bird was weighed, wings measured, a general assessment of their overall health, molt status, then banded for release.
All ages were in the group and I was particularly pleased to see the young children taking such an interest and asking good questions. All were given an opportunity to release one of the birds and to see the smiles on the childrens faces as they gently held the bird in hand was delightful.
My parents started my interest in birding when I was young and it has been a life long activity. Interacting with nature teaches value of and appreciation for all life forms.
Some of the birds were very docile from start to end while others expressed their discontent with the whole situation. The Cardinal I was to release clamped on to my finger and would not let go despite total freedom to fly at any time. Not that it really hurt, just a pinch. I was more amused at how mad it was from being handled and that given the opportunity to fly, didn't. Finally a gentle stroke down its back sent it off.