Monday, 31 May 2010

Two days from Priory

With rain persisting through much of the daylight hours on Saturday, ringing was obviously dropped from the wekend program. Looking out at first light on Sunday, it was apparent that we would have to ring somewhere with a bit of shelter. So we, of three different rankings, had a makeshift session at the back of "the sheep pen".

The main accomplishment was picking up several young birds, evenly split between Blackbird and Robin.
So the tally was 10 new birds and 9 re-traps as under:
Blue Tit 1
Great Tit (1) - this had 'moved house' from the CES area
Blackcap (1) - a 5M
Garden Warbler 1 - a 5F
Whitethroat (1) - another 5M
Wren (1)
Blackbird 4 (2)
Robin 4
Dunnock (3) - oldest, a 4F in July '08

Female Blackcap with "gunge" from feeding her youngsters.

Bank Holiday Monday took us back to CES, visit 4/12. My 'C' ringer from Bucks joined us for some practice in extraction and looking at "funny little birds". [He spends much of his free time checking birds of prey and ringing things in boxes].

Regular Ed with 'newby' Dave (but permit numbers say otherwise)

We were lucky enough to catch seven 3J's, considering the conditions; 1 Dunnock, 3 Robins, 1 Blackbird & 2 Greenfinches.

Young Robin and young female Greenfinch

The best moment for me was catching both of a pair of LESWH, that had arrived about three weeks ago. You never know when these are around because of the very short song period of the males and their 'hushed' contact calls.

Lesser Whitethroat (2CY female [5F])

Ed proudly presented us with the 12th species of the day, a 2nd year Reed Warbler; note the abrasion.

Immature male Reed Warbler - prospecting?

Today's tally was a modest tit-less 23, 16 new and 7 re-traps.
Long-tailed Bushtit 1
Chiffchaff 1 - a breeding female
Blackcap (1) - nesting female
Lesser Whitethroat 2 - a pair
Whitethroat (2) - a pair with young nearby
Reed Warbler 1
Wren 1 (1)
Blackbird 1
Robin 3 (1) - re-trap male was ringed as a '3J' exactly 3 years ago!
Dunnock 1 (2) - one time juveniles from '04 and '07
Greenfinch 3 - 2 juveniles and a female novice breeder
Bullfinch 2 - both 2CY females

Female Bullfinch

Because of the gentle/moderate westerly, a lot of insects were been blown off the willows. To our delight, we were entertained by the comings and goings of 150 to 200 Common Swifts for much of the morning. And I nearly forgot; something has been nobbling our nestlings. The evidence was found in the middle of the rack.

[Click on picture to enlarge, then click again (+)]

Now that we've managed to get this visit in, we can think about ringing a new site next weekend. We've had 2 "out of season" recce's, so we'll see whether it's worthwhile ... or not, as the case may be.

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