Sunday, 18 October 2009

Holme Pierrepont - Sun 18 Oct

It's been a while since we carried on this far into October and although the summer migrants have gone and the catch is dwindling, we still had a memorable day.

It was a cool and overcast start, not to mention something of a lie-in (we met at 7am). The wind didn't really feature, but the sun came out mid-morning and activity subsided quickly. We only put up 11 nets but we caught 30 birds.

Redwings were a constant feature overhead, but none found the nets. However 4 Song Thrushes was an above average total and some or all of these may have been migrants. The rest of the catch comprised standard fare with the exception of one rather good bird. A first for the group no less, but one predicted regularly in the last few years. I think it's a first for the site as well and there can be no doubt that the habitat now looks perfect for Cetti's Warbler.
Well done Nabegh for winning the identification competition and therefore getting to ring it. Let's hope that next spring we are greeted by its explosive song and they take up residence.

For those less familiar with the species, note that it has only 10 tail feathers (the only British passerine not to have 12) and as you might guess from its short wings, it is not a migrant. As our winters have become milder it has started spreading from its stronghold on the south coast. A couple of years ago a pair appeared at Attenborough and bred, but never near the nets!

Sight records today included a Little Egret, 9 Snipe, regular Meadow Pipits and Skylarks, 2 Jays and single Green Sandpiper, Grey Wagtail, Fieldfare and Siskin. Butterflies and dragonflies have gone now, but we did see a hornet.

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