Sunday, 29 January 2012

Chalton STW 29/01/2012

No ringing was attempted today but we did have a work party. Members present were Roy, Kieran, Ken, Maureen, Bailey and myself. A number of birds were using the feeding station, buzzard and green sandpipers were seen on site along with a lot of gulls.

It was intended to create a channel through the phragmites and willow in the u-pond. With a few hours work this has been achieved.

Sandy Smith Nature Reserve

This weekend I've been ringing at Sandy Smith Nature Reserve.

Above: A Lesser Redpoll.

Above: A Brambling - a first for SSNR.

For more details & more birds, see my blog.

Friday, 20 January 2012

Bearded Tit - Marston Vale Milliennium Country Park, 31 December 2011

Phil Candlish kindly sent me these photos of the male Bearded Tit that I ringed at Marston Vale Millennium Country Park on the last day of 2011. I've mentioned previously that I had ringed this cracking male bird, but the photos are so good it would be a shame not to share them.

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Chalton 15/01/2012

A late start this morning turning a working session in to a ringing session. At the same time, Mike kindly gave the ringing hut a coat of preservative and the old hut was moved to one of the ponds in readiness for a hide.

Despite our best efforts only 18 birds were caught of 7 species(ringed/retraps)

Blue Tit 3/2
Dunnock 0/3
Goldcrest 1/0
Great Tit 0/4
Redwing 1/0
Robin 1/3
Wren 1/0

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Chalton 7.1.2012

The first session of the year only managed to produce 21 birds of 7 species. 11 new and 10 retraps(in Brackets) as follows:-

Blackbird 3/0
Blue Tit 5/2
Chaffinch 2/0
Great Tit 4/2
Grey Wagtail 1/0
Pied Wagtail 1/0
Robin 0/1

The frame of a duck trap has been sited and hopefully this will be in operation in the near future.

Sunday, 1 January 2012

2011 - a good year, let's hope for even better things in 2012

On Saturday 31st December, I paid a short visit to Marston Vale Millennium Country Park. Only two birds caught - a retrap Blue Tit (ringed on 19/11/11) and an unringed male Bearded Tit. There were some nice birds around: a female Sparrowhawk flew across the reed bed, a Cetti's Warbler sang briefly, 36 Fieldfare flew west, a Grey Wagtail flew over on many occasions (not sure if there was just one particularly active bird or several birds). Over 100 Lapwings were on the Pillinge, together with a few Little Grebes and some Tufted Ducks.

My December ringing totals were low, a combination of wind, rain and Christmas (retraps are shown in brackets):

  • Wren 1 (+1)

  • Dunnock 1

  • Robin 4 (+1)

  • Bearded Tit 1

  • Marsh Tit 2

  • Blue Tit 18 (+8)

  • Great Tit 1

  • Chaffinch 1 (+1)

  • Goldfinch 1

  • Bullfinch 2

  • Reed Bunting 3

  • Total: 35 ringed + 11 retraps.
Of the 35 birds ringed, 20 were ringed at Bromham Mill, 9 at Marston Vale and 6 at Bedfordshire Golf Club, Stagsden.

Overall I've had a very interesting year, ringing-wise. Highlights were: ringing of Swallow pulli at farms and stables in the Bedford area; being given permission to ring at Marston Vale Millennium Country Park and also at Harrold-Odell Country Park; first nestbox ringing at Bedfordshire Golf Club. At Marston this led to ringing Swallows, Sand Martins and Yellow Wagtails on summer evenings, along with good numbers of Sedge and Reed Warblers during the day; in the autumn the focus changed to ringing Reed Buntings as they went to roost, plus ringing 4 Cetti's Warblers and 2 Bearded Tits.

My top ten species for the year were as follows:

  • Swallow 145 fledged + 133 pulli = 278 ringed

  • Blue Tit 183 fledged + 44 pulli = 227 ringed (+ 43 retraps)

  • Great Tit 92 fledged + 42 pulli = 134 ringed (+ 22 retraps)

  • Reed Warbler 45 ringed (+1 retrap + 1 control caught twice)

  • Dunnock 16 ringed (+ 15 retraps)

  • Reed Bunting 27 ringed

  • Long-tailed Tit 21 ringed (+6 retraps)

  • Wren 22 ringed (+3 retraps)

  • Sedge Warbler 23 ringed (+1 retrap)

  • Robin 18 ringed (+5 retraps)
Other species processed (ringed and/or retrapped) in 2011 were: Mute Swan, Sparrowhawk, Lapwing, Wood Pigeon, Tawny Owl, Swift, Kingfisher, Great Spotted Woodpecker, Sand Martin, Meadow Pipit, Yellow Wagtail, Grey Wagtail, Blackbird, Song Thrush, Redwing, Cetti's Warbler, Lesser Whitethroat, Whitethroat, Garden Warbler, Blackcap, Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Goldcrest, Marsh Tit, Coal Tit, Nuthatch, Treecreeper, Jackdaw, Chaffinch, Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Bullfinch and Yellowhammer.

The total numbers of fledged birds ringed was 751, plus 224 pulli ringed, 116 retraps/controls. Grand total of 1091 birds of 44 species.