Saturday, 29 October 2011

Holme Pierrepont - Sunday 23 October

Yet again the forecast was not good, it was going to be far too windy for mist netting but yet again they were wrong and we soon had all the usual nets erected. The site seemed quiet and it turned into a steady morning of just a few birds each net round. All the summer migrants had gone, not even a Blackcap managed to find the nets. The only bird of interest caught was the first Redwing of the winter.....oh and a new Cetti's Warbler but then we do catch one every October at this site now! All the poles and guys were removed but we will need to do a fair bit of 'gardening' again one day this winter ready for next spring.

Monday, 17 October 2011

Attenborough Migration Day Ringing Demo - Sun 16 October

No full ringing session was held yesterday but a few of us went to do a ringing demo at the annual Attenborough Migration Day event. On a previous demo there we had managed only four birds but the weather conditions were near perfect and I was hopeful of a few more birds finding the nets. The first round produced 17 birds, the second round was almost as good and then it did start to tail off. We finished with 43 birds, our best ever total for one of these events, the majority were Tree Sparrows but a few other species as well gave the visitors plenty to look at. The visitor numbers were high and many seemed very interested, especially the children. A Nottingham Post photographer arrived and wanted to take some pictures of one of us with a bird and some children watching. Tim, as we know, is rather camera shy but volunteered and I guess it was a break for him to be in front of a still camera after all his television work. Thanks again to the staff at the centre for keeping us fed and watered.

Wednesday, 12 October 2011

Monday, 10 October 2011

Isle of May - 1-8 October 2011

1 Oct
Left Anstruther 14.00 on the RIB - island covered in mist and visibility less than half a mile. After unpacking at Low Light nets were set on Holymans Road and in the Top Gardens. Many Goldcrest and Thrushes on the island. Wind NE force 1. 15 birds ringed, GOLDC 3, BLABI 5, CHIFF 2, BLACA 1, MEAPI 1, BRAMB 1, REDPO 2.

2 Oct
Early start but heavy rain so no nets could be opened, just a few birds from traps until just after midday when rain cleared and nets opened. Wind E force 1 to SE force 2 by afternoon. 348 birds ringed, GOLDC 262, SONTH 10, REDWI 4, BLABI 4, CHIFF 26, WREN 1, BLACA 3, BRAMB 2, WILWA 3, REEWA 1, WHITE 1, SISKI 1, ROBIN 30.

3 Oct
Early start on clear calm morning, nets opened, traps driven and spring traps set. Birds seen laving the island. Wind has gone W force 5/7 by evening.111 birds ringed, GOLDC 52, SONTH 2, REDWI 3, CHIFF 13, WREN 1, MEAPI 24, REDPO 2, WILWA 1, ROBIN 4, TREEC 1, WHEAT 3, ROCPI 5.

4 Oct
Woke up to strong westerly winds going NW by evening, no nets could be opened so spring traps set and used all day. 17 birds ringed, GOLDC 1, SONTH 1, REDWI 2, CHIFF 1, REDPO 1,WHEAT 1, ROCPI 8, WHINC 1, SNIPE 1.

5 Oct
Strong W to NW winds all day and no nets opened, all birds have moved out. 10 birds ringed, SONTH 1, MEAPI 6, ROCPI 3.

6 Oct
Strong westerly winds all day, no nets opened, spring traps set in afternoon, 12 birds ringed, MEAPI 4, REDPO 5, WHEAT 2, ROCPI 1. 700 Pink-footed geese and 42 Barnacle geese over island plus 4 Golden Plover.

7 Oct
Winds north-westerly and have eased after a 3 day blow bright sunshine at times. 18 birds ringed, GOLDC 2, REDWI 2, BLABI 1, CHIFF 2, WHEAT 1, ROCPI 3, DUNNO 6, OYSTE 1. 1368 Pink- footed geese over island and over 1000 Kittiwakes on the sea.

8 Oct
Left island at 11.00 after another great week.

Total for the week 531 birds ringed.




Saturday, 8 October 2011

Recent recoveries

A couple that have just come through are a Tree Sparrow ringed at the Bunny colony as a chick last July which was caught in March this year at Wanlip Gravel Pits in Leicestershire, 21km to the south. The other was a Reed Warbler ringed at Holme Pierrepoint as a 3 last September and caught in Portugal on 10 August this year, 1808km to the south. Interesting how the bird travelled south much earlier once it was an adult.

Wednesday, 5 October 2011

Isle of May - Weds update

As you might have expected from looking at any recent weather map, things have quietened down on the May and Ian reports that they are only spring-trapping. Birds around include Turnstone, Curlew, Purple Sandpiper, Merlin and Short-eared Owl.

Monday, 3 October 2011

Holme Pierrepont, Sunday 2 October

I did not think I would manage to get a team together for a session on Sunday but Jim said he would come along and others added their name to the list so I soon had a team of 6, including Duncan just back from Shetland.

I said I did not think we would catch much and personally would have been happy with anything over 20. The forecast was for still, sunny conditions so I thought we would be taking down early because of the heat, if the previous day was anything to go by it would reach the high twenties. The forecast was wrong, it did start still and sunny but as the morning went on and the temperature started to rise some broken cloud came along and pegged the temperature back to the mid-twenties - crazy I know but this was an October ringing session!

We started to catch well and it continued throughout the morning, we ended with 74 birds including 20 retraps. The species we caught most in the nets was, however, not a bird but hornets! We must have taken out at least 30 spread throughout all the nets, luckily without anyone getting stung. The species of bird we caught the most of was Reed Bunting with 20 followed by 12 Blackcaps. The only other warblers caught were 4 Chiffchaff and a single Sedge Warbler, the rest of the birds were a good selection from Blackbird to Goldcrest. So it might be worth another session there next week...............unless it is too hot!


Isle of May - Monday update

In from Ian:

Did some spring-trapping today - Northern & Greenland Wheatears and Rock Pipits. Also watched Short-eared Owls and Great Grey Shrikes flew in from sea and landed on the island. Will get them in the morning we hope...

Sunday, 2 October 2011

Isle of May

It sounds like the crew on the May have got off to a good start with c300 Goldcrest ringed today. More as and when it comes in...