Ringing: March 2019
Although it started fairly calm and clear an unexpected light breeze picked up and cloud gathered. Twenty four of the twenty eight birds caught were new. Nineteen Chaffinch made up the bulk and two thirds of these were females. A Goldcrest was the first for the year.
With reports of nests elsewhere and plenty of singing around here we continued to check the nest boxes. The main sign of activity was woodpecker enlargement of the entrance holes and we have started fitting more metal plates to protect them but need more to be kindly donated. One or two boxes did have some fresh moss in the bottom.
After so much windy weather there was enough of a drop to get a few nets up although a brief sleet shower wrapped the session up. Eighteen birds were caught of which 13 were new. Two Chiffchaffs were the first for spring and three new House Sparrows continued to indicate a healthy population around here. There was also a Blue Tit with a ring from another group.
In the lull before the storm it was good to get the nets up. Thirty birds included 18 new ones. Chaffinch, with seven, was top and a Redwing and a Siskin were perhaps starting to head back north.
Due to illness the chance to ring this morning was unavoidably missed. However the trickle of information about recoveries continues.
One involves confirmation of a colour ringed Black-headed Gull. This was seen on the Estate on December 22nd 2018 and had been ringed 312km to the west at Stevensweert, Netherlands on April 19th, 2014.
The second is a Blackcap ringed here on September 7th 2017 and taken by a cat near Barcelona, 1066km south, on February 24th this year. Presumably it was heading back to this country.