Tuesday 31st

Results from the latest round of the nest boxes are mixed. We missed some broods of Great Tits and there seem to be plenty moving around in noisy groups. Blue Tits do not seem to be doing as well with several nests where not all the birds fledged, they seem to be struggling due to the run of cold nights recently

Monday 30th

A check of the House Martins showed they have not recovered from last years problems with about half the nest boxes occupied at present. However these nests seem to be busy with healthy clutches of up to 5 eggs. If they can get over the current hurdle of cold nights it will help them recover.

Sunday 29th

Apologies for the problems with the website but it was totally out of our hands. Almost nothing to report today in the nets with just one new bird a Dunnock.

Friday 27th

A flock of Long-tailed Tits in the heligoland were the main feature, 12 of the 16 had not been ringed previously. Other young birds were a Dunnock and a Chiffchaff.

Wednesday 25th

A Black-headed Gull with a darvic ring was photographed on the Scrape on the 17th. It turns out to be the first sighting of this bird since it was ringed at Pagham Harbour on July 21st last year. As ever thank you to those who take the trouble to get these records.

The morning was spent sheltering from the increasing wind in sheltered spots such as the Elms where we checked nest boxes. Although there is a relatively poor rate of occupancy this year, following last years very bad season, the success rate seems to be good this year and indeed some chicks have already fledged. House Sparrows around the Observatory are already starting their second broods.

House Martins had a poor year last year and although there are a few more around now the occupancy rate has not improved yet.

Monday 23rd

The main activity recently has been trying to catch up with all the nest boxes. The initial visits suggest things are going well so far, lets hope this continues as it is needed to make up for last year. There is still a lot to check. Interestingly a female Barn Owl ringed last year in the Rest Harrow box is now nesting elsewhere on the Estate. A special licence is required to visit any Barn Owl nest and one of our team is the holder of such a licence.

Ringing yesterday yielded six new (Dunnock, Song Thrush, Chaffinch and three Robins) birds and ten retraps. The first juveniles are appearing but the Song Thrush was a bit of a mystery as it was a bird of last year but did not show any signs of breeding.

Friday 6th

On a bright warm morning there were lots of singing migrants but as seems the norm for May only 12 birds were caught. There were four new birds; singles of Reed Warbler, Whitethroat, Chiffchaff and Goldfinch. The retraps consisted of a Dunnock, two Robins, two Blackcaps, a Great Tit, a Chaffinch, and interestingly a six year old Blue Tit.

Tuesday 3rd

Not quite as nice but there was still time for the first Lesser Whitethroat of the year and three Whitethroats to be ringed.

Sunday 1st

It was a delight to have calmer, overcast conditions. The catch improved to ten new and ten retraps. Nine of the ten new were warblers with four Chiffchaffs, three Blackcaps, a Whitethroat and the first Reed Warbler of the year. The other new bird was another House Sparrow.