Dead birds need jobs too!

20 05 2011

The "Ghost Gull" hard at work.

Another cold, raw, wet day out here on Appledore Island. We got a few hours of dim sunshine and a respite from the winds yesterday afternoon, and were able to band gulls for a short stint. This morning, the winds have picked up again, and the fog has settled over us. But even here, we can’t avoid dead birds. One high profile dead bird has even been put to work: here on Appledore, there is a bustling bird banding station. The banders run several nets set up in the brush, and in one of the lanes they use, a gull had made its nest. The banders have attempted to move the nest to a lower traffic location, and to deter the bird from returning to its accustomed spot, they have set up a dead gull effigy. Now termed the “Ghost Gull,” he never tires, never complains, but just stands guard, wordlessly. My respect for dead birds is ever waxing.

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