Just for info purposes, I have banding permit since 1983.
Woodcock banding recovering. October 10, 1987.
To accomplish this most delicate task, I've always been very anal about my dogs behaviour in the field. They have to comply to call backs and ''Down'' command at a rate of 100%. Without these basic rules, the work becomes risky, and it's something I am nothing willing to let slide. In my own opinion, for a dog to become a somewhat broke assistant bander, it has to have a minimum of 2 years experience hunting in the field.
My woodcock banding season spring 2008
Find chicks "one day" in this type of environment, it's similar to look for a needle in a haystack.
Woodcock banding in France (Brittany)
Woodcock banding adult it's night shift.
Picture: JM GAU
Three woodcock chicks (one day).
Since the spring of 1983, I have been practicing woodcock banding, and I use my dogs to find them.
Why would someone practice woodcock banding ? There is more than one reason. In fact. Here is two reasons. why I'm attracted to this practice, first, I'm studying their migratory flyway patterns, and second, I'm interested in the species habits and longevity. On a few occasions, I had the privilege of having my daughter as a banding partner, she had the opportunity of banding one bird. Four of the chicks I banded were harvested the following fall.
Bird banding data are useful in both research and management projects. Individual identification of birds makes possible studies of dispersal and migration, behavior and social structure, life-span and survival rate, reproductive success and population growth.
I was able to harvest during hunting season of the same year, 2 chicks that I had banded myself the previous spring
April 6, 1999, the weather was mild, so I went out scouting with Zouky to snap some pictures of woodcocks, maybe find a few nests and band some chicks. Zouky went on point at 09:42; a woodcock took flight very oddly as if it had eggs or chicks. I had the feeling that something was wrong. We looked at this hen walk away until it was out of site. We moved closer to take a look at this strange behavior. When we finally caught up to it, surprise! It was wounded at its left wing elbow. I picked it up in my hands and inspected its elbow scrupulously. This injury was recent. The elbow was fractured and blood was trickling, very liquid. The mandible of this hen was impregnated with dried soil.
Why was this bird injured? I could only assume:
1: It could’ve hit a branch while flying off, but not likely.
2: In this area, there is some power line pylons. It might’ve hit high-tension wires.
3: Possibility of depredation?
This hen could not have fractured its wing during courtship because hens do not participate in this activity; flying Skyward is reserved for cocks. I went back to my car with Scolopax minor in my right hand, I went home to drop Zouky off in her kennel, and I took a cardboard box and placed the woodcock in it and soon after I was on my way to the SPCA. The employee at the SPCA filled a report and relieved me from the bird to put it in a safer and more comfortable place. The SPCA has a specific section reserved for wildlife.
Here is a copy of the document that the employee at the SPCA issued me.
MICHIGAN INCLUDED IN 3 YEAR, 3 STATE WOODCOCK MORTALITY STUDY
Last Update: December 27, 2014