Sunday, January 29, 2012

Tropical Parula - Quinta Mazatlan

I initially found a Tropical Parula at Quinta Mazatlan on December 17, 2011. I went to Quinta looking for a Tropical Parula, I admit, because one has wintered there the last couple of years, feasting on the oranges at the feeding station. I presumed the Tropical Parula was a male because it was singing, and an adult because the head was blue and not green. Here it is, from that day: Today as a part of regular research at Quinta Mazatlan, the Tropical Parula was captured and banded. Lo and behold, it's an adult female. The age of the bird was determined using Pyle (1997). The primary coverts are broad, in good condition, and edged with blue. The tail feathers are broad. The bird was sexed as a female by the dark blue cheek and lores, not the black of a male. It looks from reports as though there has been a Tropical Parula at Quinta since it was initially found. So if this is the same bird that appeared on 12/17 why was it singing then? It's a very pretty bird, and it will be interesting to see if she comes back next year. I sure hope so!
Thanks to Mark Conway, the Master Bander operating this station, for allowing me to band with him, and Mary from Minnesota for loaning me a Nikon battery when both my cameras died!