Yellow birds stand out in a crowd

North American Bird Bander
By:  and 



Highly visible auxiliary markers, such as neck collars, nasal saddles, patagial tags, and leg streamers, are used regularly and effectively with banding in studying migration and distribution of large birds (e.g. waterfowl, birds of prey, wading birds). Simply stated, a large bird can accommodate a marker that is large enough to be seen readily by an observer but still small enough not to alter behavior or impair flight (see Marion and Shamis 1977 for review). Such is not true with smaller birds, and consequently information on their migration routes and distribution is usually poorer than for larger birds. The use of colored leg bands increases the frequency of detection of small birds that have been banded; however, a large percentage of such marked birds is usually still overlooked. Only by using highly visible techniques, such as plumage dyes and bleaches in conjunction with leg bands, can one obtain significant numbers of sightings of small birds. Here we present information from sightings of large numbers of marked Dunlins (Calidris alpina) and Western Sandpipers (C. mauri) that dramatically demonstrates this.

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Yellow birds stand out in a crowd
Series title North American Bird Bander
Volume 8
Issue 1
Year Published 1983
Language English
Publisher Western, Inland, and Eastern Bird Banding Associations
Contributing office(s) Alaska Science Center
Description 4 p.
First page 6
Last page 9
Google Analytic Metrics Metrics page
Additional publication details