Thursday, 20 June 2013

Early Moult?

 While ringing at Watermead  I was surprised to trap this adult male Willow warbler that was undergoing active moult. This seems early to me!
It is always nice to trap Lesser Whitethroat, possibly my favourite bird.
In the hand I thought it had a white crescent in the upper eye, although I am less certain when I look at this photo. It had very abraded PP and TF. The 5th TF had no white tip although it was abraded. It was a female with a BP of 2. Aged as a 4 , but I suspect it is a 5.

Wednesday, 19 June 2013

Terns and Sand Martins doing well.

 We managed to ring 24  Common Tern chicks at Watermead Country Park today. Using a bucket to keep the birds in prior to ringing was a great idea. Well done Chris!
 There is always one that is just too small. Hard to imagine that this petite package will  make its way to over winter off the west coast of Africa.
Another success was ringing 32 Sand Martins at Church Farm. 24 of these were newly fledged young.

Sunday, 2 June 2013

And then it cleared

I was away in Norfolk when a huge movement of Swifts occurred at the sewerage works. There are just a few times each year when sometimes thousands of birds congregate around the filter beds and even then only very occasionally when this coincides with safe access and calm drizzly conditions is it possible to make a catch. This past week afforded a couple of chances but only for a brief time. We manged to ring 29 House Martins 5 Swallows and 2 Swifts. All were healthy weights and apart for multiple flat flies on most individuals they all looked in good health too. As soon as the drizzle clears the birds fly higher and that's it.