The Gray Catbird is a gray bird, that gives a "meow" like call; hence the name... It has a dark gray crown and rusty undertail coverts, as seen in the two photos below.
|Adult Gray Catbird|
|Rusty undertail coverts on an adult Gray Catbird|
|Click on the graph to see a clearer image.|
We can graph where the Gray Catbirds from 2010-2013 have been captured. In the figure below, it is clear that Net 2 catches the majority of GRCA. If we were to break this down greater, you would see that this is the location where we catch a high proportion of young GRCA that are moving along the marsh edge. Net 2, is in general, our most productivity net, with approx. 25% of the total number of birds we capture each season coming out of that net. It seems to be a narrow corridor that many of the birds travel along. Although in the last two years, beavers have changed some of the willow structure around the net, so its capture rate has decreased.
The overall trend that can be observed when matched with the map, is that GRCAs utilize the marsh edge when there are willows present, but not where there is just cattails and bulrush (net 6 and 7). They also use the caragana and tree rows inland as well. We have found GRCAs nesting along the marsh edge (near net 4) as well as inland (near net 8 & 9).
Part 2 of this post, will focus on the recaptures and returns of the Gray Catbird at the Wascana MAPS station.