Monday, 11 June 2012

Nest box roundup

As Sunday was a nice day, for once, the opportunity was taken to check the small boxes in the wood with a view to ring any chicks. 7 boxes of Blue Tits had big enough chicks and 50 in total were ringed. There were 2 boxes of previously ringed chicks that were now nearly ready to fledge, a further 2 boxes still had  small chicks, about 5 days old but also with quite a few unhatched eggs. The 5 boxes with Great Tits in them have also seen some failures as 2 boxes had been abandoned containing dead chicks, but out of the rest 22 were big enough to ring. Watching the adult birds visiting the boxes with beakfuls of large green caterpillars gives me some hope that they will survive to fledging and that they are finding enough food during all this wet weather.
The Tree Sparrow colony seems to be slower moving onto a second clutch than last year, and not all the boxes have been taken up, but another brood of 5 well-fed chicks were ringed today with another clutch just hatched and another 4 on eggs.
Some of the open nests that we have been monitoring on another site have unfortunatley been predated, Meadow Pipits included, probably by corvids as there is alot of them around the area, but the vegetation is growing rapidly so this should give more cover and a better chance of survival with the next clutch.

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