A few dozen Piping Plovers were banded in NJ and MA this breeding season in conjunction with a flight behavior project being carried out by the State University of NY – ESF. Although resighting these birds on their migratory and wintering grounds is not a primary objective of the project, the presence of marked birds in these locations provides an opportunity to learn more about the way Atlantic coast breeders use the rest of their range.
These birds were only marked with upper leg bands, so be sure to closely inspect any piping plovers you see before dismissing them as bandless. New Jersey birds were marked with two color bands on the upper legs and Massachusetts birds were marked with one color band on each upper leg. Colors used this year include: yellow, orange, green, black, gray, light blue, and blue. If you see a marked Piping Plover, please write down the location, date, behavior of bird, a detailed description of the bands (see below) and send to:
Michelle Avis, State University of NY – Syracuse, firstname.lastname@example.org
Chris Davis, NJ Division of Fish and Wildlife, Christina.Davis@dep.state.nj.us
To describe a band combination:
Type: color band (there are only color bands on these birds, no flags or metal bands)
Colors: as exact as possible – yellow, orange, green, black, gray, light blue, and blue. There may be two bands of the same color placed over each other on a leg (this may look like one tall band).
Location on bird’s leg: all bands from this project will be on upper legs (above the ‘knee’).
Please note if you are unsure of any of the bands or if you did not see all parts of the leg clearly.
The Piping Plover above would be described as: Green/Yellow upper left, nothing lower left, Green/Black upper right, nothing lower right
Thank you all for keeping an eye out!