Bird Banding Study Finds Home at Coley Preserve | Catawba Lands Conservancy
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Bird Banding Study Finds Home at Coley Preserve

The sun has barely risen over CLC’s Coley Preserve as Keith McKenrick sets up 40-foot pocketed fine nylon nets designed to catch small birds without injuring them.

Properties conserved by Catawba Lands Conservancy have long served as living laboratories, playing host to a variety of research projects. Previous studies hosted on Conservancy properties have included research on geological formations, monitoring an endangered turtle population and one study (still ongoing) which engages local university students in tracking and assessing native salamander species.

Most recently our team was excited to host a Monitoring Avian Productivity and Survivorship (MAPS) study at Coley Preserve in Lincoln County, N.C. The study, which tracks species of songbirds found at the preserve, has so far yielded 17 different species, including common yellow-throat, white-eyed vireo, Acadian flycatcher and more!

Protocols for the MAPS study are very particular, ensuring that no matter where in the world a birder is working, the data collected about each bird is the same. Each specimen is carefully measured, assessed for breeding condition and sex and banded before being safely released. This allows for comparisons across geographic locations and populations and provides a robust dataset for analysis.

Check out the photos below of the banding process at Coley, and send us any questions you have!

All photos and descriptions by Nancy Pierce.