Ringing: July 2018
Did they get it wrong! Most forecasts, except BBC online (but including local BBC!) said there would be early rain and thunder even here. There was none.
The day was successful with 66 birds ringed. This included the first Grasshopper Warbler for the year and the second Wood Warbler. Willow Warbler was the top migrant with nine.
A check of the House Sparrow boxes found several successful broods and two nests with their third clutch of eggs.
The local House Martins are having more mixed results with some nests which were eggs at the start of the heatwave only having two successful chicks. More broods are now on the way though and at least all nests remain occupied.
There is also an intersting recovery of a Chiffchaff. It was ringed here on migration in October 2015 and found dead in Germany on March 3rd this year ( 745 km ENE). It could be that it had wandered here as a juvenile and was an early returner to its breeding area .
Only a short stint possible today as the wind and then driving drizzle arrived. New Willow,Garden and Reed Warblers were ringed.
Limited netting was possible for three hours before the wind picked up too much. Thirteen birds were ringed including four Willow Warblers, of which there were more around. Swifts were heading south and were not going to stop for us.
A Pied Flycatcher was the pick of 28 new birds. We usually do not record these until late August or September when easterly conditions bring in Scandinavian migrants. We caught the first Sedge Warbler of the autumn as well. Willow Warblers increased to five and there were three more Garden Warblers.
The calm, hot, conditions continue. As expected migration is just starting. This was shown by three Garden Warblers and three Willow Warblers amongst the total of 38 new birds. The progeny of local breeders continue to appear including three Dunnocks, five Blackbirds and four Reed Warblers today.
The sun and heat is limiting netting activity but the first autumn migrants are appearing on cue. Today there was the first juvenile Willow Warbler and another Sand Martin and Garden Warbler. Four more juvenile Blackbirds indicate a productive season for them so far but they will have to earn their spurs to survive the drought.
A pleasant mornings ringing until it got too hot by midmorning. The first signs of movement were 10 juvenile Sand Martins. A juvenile Goldcrest was locally produced and the Garden Warbler from two weeks ago reappeared Three adult female Reed Warblers suggested the second broods have hatched and the adults are busy looking after them.
After a busy day yesterday clearing the paths and rides there was some ringing today. The highlight was the first Coal Tit of the year probably a product of local breeding.
Twenty new birds before the breeze halted things. Young warblers-Blackcap, Chiffchaff and Reed warbler, plus seedeaters-Goldfinch, Greenfinch and House Sparrow, made up the bulk.
A better morning with 17 new birds. The highlights were a Wood Warbler and a Swift. Two unringed adult female Whitethroats still in breeding condition were a surprise considering ringing has continued regularly throughout the summer.
Much quieter this morning with seven new birds- five Blackcaps, a reed warbler and a Greenfinch.
A couple more reports- The first is of a Sparrowhawk. It was ringed as a one year old at the Bay in April 2010 and reported dying in Deal this year, a gap of 2971 days. The second is of a Reed Warbler ringed at the Bay as a juvenile at passage time ( 28/8/2015) and retrapped in Nottinghamshire twice. The first time was on 21/8/17 and the second on 31/5/18. It can now be sexed as a male and is probably breeding at the site.
There have been more details of movements of ringed birds to and from the Bay. The Common Gull controlled along Sandown Road in March had been ringed as a chick at Svelmo, Denmark on the 19th June 1998. This was 7195 days later. Road casualties continue to compete with cats and windows as the most frequent cause of death. This time we have heard of yet another Blackbird and a Sparrowhawk, both found locally.
Regular ringing and maintenance work has continued whilst I was away. Twenty four birds were ringed today. This included the first Garden Warbler of the year. New Whitethroats continue to suggest a successful breeding with two more today. Six more Jackdaws provided plenty of good experience as they start to get on with their moult.