Simon Valdez a Finalist in NSERC'S Science Exposed Contest!

June 09, 2016

Graduate Student Simon Valdez is a finalist in the NSERC Science Exposed image contest. There is a public vote!  Please take the time to look at these amazing images--and vote for Simon's (#11).  Info about his photo is copied below, after the link to vote.

30,000 km of flight 

Simon Octavio Valdez Juarez
Simon Fraser University

This yellow warbler is quite the long distance flyer, the coloured band seen on his leg is a testament to the species's migratory endurance. I banded this bird in January 2012, next to a tree dividing two chili-pepper fields in Jalisco, Mexico, where he hunted for spiders and caterpillars (as seen here). In April he migrated north and I lost track of him, but the following year he was back in the same tree. Feather analysis revealed that his breeding grounds were in the Yukon or the Northwest Territories, Canada. This picture was taken in January 2015. In the time between the banding and this picture, this tiny, nine gram bird migrated from Canada to Mexico four times, an impressive 30,000 km of travel. This yellow warbler is one of 200 being studied to understand how agriculture affects the ecology and survival of migratory birds.