Monday, 5 May 2014

Attenborough CES Visit 1, Sunday 4 May

Alex, Duncan, Gary, Nick and I carried out the first CES visit of the year at Attenborough on Sunday. The weather conditions were close to perfect and the first bird in the net was a Cetti’s Warbler, so all looked well for a good catch. Unfortunately the birds did not share our optimism and catches were slow throughout the morning. We did get a pair off Great Spotted Woodpeckers which were interesting in that both male and female had a large engorged stage 3 brood patch. Both sexes of this species do incubate but I have never seen such an advanced brood patch on a male before although the majority of the Woodpeckers we do catch are normally caught outside of the breeding season.

The totals for the day were 18 new and 5 retraps made up as follows: Song Thrush 0/1, Blackbird 1/1, Great Spotted Woodpecker 2/0, Blackcap 2/0, Great Tit 2/0, Cetti’s Warbler 1/0, Chiffchaff 1/0, Wren 2/0, Treecreeper 1/0, Bullfinch 2/2, Robin 2/0, Dunnock 1/1, Garden Warbler 1/0.


 Great Spotted Woodpeckers: female on the left (practising its pecking on Alex's hand - the blood is Alex's not the bird's) and male with the red nape on the right, blinking. (G. Goddard)

 A slightly blurry picture of the male's brood patch. (N. Humphreys)

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