Sunday, February 21, 2016

Common Redpoll

On 18 February 2016, I banded my first Rice County Common Redpoll of the year. Annual redpoll numbers fluctuate greatly. When spruce and birch seed production fails in the arctic, redpolls head south. Mid-February seems like a late winter arrival date for wandering redpolls. Birds have little fidelity to specific breeding sites and tend to be nomadic in their winter wandering. A redpoll banded in Michigan was recovered in eastern Siberia. Another, banded in Belgium, was recovered two winters later in China (Knox and Lowther 2000). On the other hand, despite having ringed thousands of redpolls, none of my birds have been recovered.


  1. With your significant banding efforts, Dan, it would seem only a matter of time before there are re-sightings reported.

    1. One problem is that redpolls breed where there are very few people.