Monday, 11 March 2013
Granby, Sunday 10 March
Before leaving home I had to scrape 2 inches of snow off the car and I did so happily as ringing in the snow always seems to bump up the totals so it was a little surprising to find that Granby, only 10 minutes from my house, was completely snow-free. The distant snow covered Belvoir hills remained so all day too but whilst we had a few flurries through the morning, nothing settled.
Jim and I caught a total of 47 birds, comprising (new/retrap): Dunnock 0/1, Robin 0/1, Blue Tit 0/5, Great Tit 0/12, Chaffinch 5/6, Yellowhammer 9/6, Reed Bunting 2/0.
As usual, the late morning and late season retraps tend to be more interesting. We caught a Yellowhammer from 2011, Great Tits from 2010 and 2011(2), a Blue Tit from 2008 and Chaffinches from 2006, 2010 and 2011. It's perhaps worth noting that all the tits caught were marked!
Good to catch a couple of Reed Buntings, but compared with last winter there have not been many. The fact that both today's birds were female may be because males are starting to drift towards territories and in fact we did hear one almost singing.
Not much else was noted flying about. Winter thrushes are fairly thin on the ground now and the only other notable numbers were gulls and Wood Pigeons overhead. I heard a call twice that was almost certainly a Chiffchaff, but I became hopelessly entangled in an overhanging dog rose before I could get a look so we'll never know. Nevertheless, the thought made me feel a bit more springy as the numbness crept further up my fingers. Only 3 weeks until the first swallow...