Bird Outing, Early Spring at UVM 2020

The time of observation was between 8am and 9:30am. The weather was clear in the morning but cold, later that day it snowed heavily, around 5 inches total.

Of the observed birds, the crows seemed to have the most communication and interaction between individuals. The crows were observed to be cawing and making other noises at others within the group who would respond with movements or other vocalizations. The assumption of the purpose of the vocalizations is that of assertion of belonging and communication of existence of the food they were eating. The robins, while presumably also feeding as the group was seen wandering about an open field, were not making vocalizations and instead all seemed to be operating autonomously and without respect to others. This contrasts with the crows who seemed to be working together as a group with a shared interest among all the individuals. The chickadees observed were perched in a bush and would make occasional vocalizations to one another but made no movement or change in posture.

The coats of the crow and the robin as observed differ greatly. The robins have slate grey dorsal feathering with a burnt orange underbelly and torso. The crows are completely black in contrast, with no differing markings. The slate grey may have evolved in robins to allow them to camouflage with their forest habitat where it matches the bark of trees around them. The dark coloring of the crows may have evolved to aid in heat retention or killing of bacteria by sunlight.

One of the observed robins was seen pecking at the ground and picking up dried leaves presumably in search of food. As it was early in the morning this is consistent with what one would expect from its circadian rhythm and the robins presence at the current time, that being early spring, is consistent with a migration southward during the winter and its suspected circannual rhythm.

Posted by wfinegar wfinegar, March 26, 2020 00:46

Observations

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

American Crow Corvus brachyrhynchos

Observer

wfinegar

Date

March 24, 2020

Description

Observed 5 crows feeding on the contents of a spilled trashcan, continuous cawing and chattering between the group.

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

Black-capped Chickadee Poecile atricapillus

Observer

wfinegar

Date

March 24, 2020

Description

Three were seen sitting inside a bush, occasional singing between them but no other interactions.

Photos / Sounds

No photos or sounds

What

American Robin Turdus migratorius

Observer

wfinegar

Date

March 24, 2020

Description

A group of 6 robins were seen walking around the grass of a large field, presumably feeding but such action was not observed directly.

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