[TN-Bird] Re: 7 Mississippi Kites, Henry County

  • From: "" <dmarc-noreply@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> (Redacted sender "knoxmartin2@xxxxxxx" for DMARC)
  • To: yodergoat@xxxxxxxxx, tn-bird@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 20 Jul 2014 20:00:53 -0400 (EDT)

As I have posted in the past, I was involved with a Mississippi Kite 
reintroduction program for almost 20 years, first at the Memphis Zoo where I 
was coordinator of the Raptor Rehabilitation Program, and later as director of 
the Mid-South Raptor Center also in Memphis. During that period over 300 
juvenile kites were trapped and removed from "problem" nests in Kansas and sent 
to us for reintroduction in their historic habitat along the Mississippi Flyway 
in the Mid-South. While the majority of the birds were released in the lower 
Mid-South around Memphis/Shelby County, almost 100 birds were released in the 
Henry County areas in the neighborhood of Paris Landing State Park. No birds 
have been released in almost ten years so these Henry County birds are 
certainly not from those originally released, but I would like to think (hope!) 
that maybe they are descendants of some of those original released Kansas 
birds. I am sorry to say that we have never received a single band return on 
any of the originally released birds so I have no way of knowing if any 
survived the long migration to South America in the fall and then the return to 
the US the following spring, but hopefully some did. The instances of kite 
sightings by MTOS members and others have increased from only a few in a season 
in the 50's and 60's to hundreds a season now. I have personally seen flocks in 
the Agricenter area where the raptor center is located of over 100 on several 
occasions, and one flock had well over 150 individuals. Hopefully the 
reintroduction program had a small part in this dramatic increase in the 
numbers of this special bird.

Knox Martin
Mid-South Raptor Center
Memphis, Shelby County

-----Original Message-----
From: Shawna Ellis <yodergoat@xxxxxxxxx>
To: Tn Bird List <tn-bird@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Sent: Sun, Jul 20, 2014 5:30 pm
Subject: [TN-Bird] 7 Mississippi Kites, Henry County

about 9:00 am
Henry County

A family we know who has had Mississippi Kites regularly at their home
this year and last year called yesterday to say that they had SEVEN
kites in their yard. Six birds were in one tree and one was in
another. I drove out to the location, but some of the birds had left
and there were only 4 still present. I did, however, see photos from
my friend of six birds in the tree at one time, and they pointed out
where the other bird had been perched.

My own photos were quite bad, as the birds were backlit and in
terrible light. The included photo shows two of the three birds which
were in one dead tree.

These birds are not very skittish and remain perched in the tree for
long periods when they are there, so might be good subjects for
photography in good lighting. My friends have said that if anyone
wishes to come and photograph the birds, they may do so. They live in
a subdivision with a large cul de sac and the dead tree where the
birds usually perch is quite near the cul de sac, so one could
photograph them from their vehicle without even getting on the
homeowners' property or disturbing traffic flow. I took photos in bad
light with a very basic 300 millimeter lens, so a longer lens and good
lighting could render some great photos.

 Of course one never knows when the birds will be there, but if you
are interested in giving it a try just email me and I will give
specific directions to the home, and can perhaps check with the owner
to see if the birds are present at that time. It could potentially be
very hit and miss. Two birds were present at about 12:30 today but
left shortly after the owners came home, and we were visiting there
for a few hours afterward and the birds did not return during that
time. So who knows when they may reappear? The general location of the
home is in the Stonebrook subdivision off of Country Club Road, which
is off of Highway 79 North just outside of Paris.

It is wonderful to see these birds so consistently in Henry County!

Shawna Ellis
Paris, Henry County


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