Sunday 28th

Although the wind had a rest overnight it quickly increased this morning. Four new birds were ringed - Blackbird, Song Thrush and two Starlings.

A check of the local House Martin colony was a more positive. I had not expected eight of the 16 boxes to be occupied and with healthy clutches, another four had lined nests. Lets hope they can keep going in the next week when some strong north-easterlies are forecast.

Saturday 27th

A long session checking lots of nest boxes and it continues to be a very mixed picture. None of the tits are getting full broods off but we had the range from adults still incubating to chicks fledged. Sixteen Blue Tit and 11 Great Tit pulli were ringed plus the first House Sparrow broods of the year with 13 pulli ringed. Considering the persistent cold wind (even though the sun is warm) it is a testament to the birds skill that they are finding caterpillars and the like to feed any of their chicks.

Friday 26th

Well that did not last long, the north-easterly was back with vengeance. It was possible to do a bit of ringing and there were 14 new birds and no retraps. Juveniles are now regular but a family of seven Blue Tits was interesting because both adults were unringed.

Wednesday 24th

At last no nagging north-easterly for a while. Thirteen birds were caught of which seven (three juvenile Robins, two juvenile Blackbirds and two adult male Chiffchaffs) were new.

A check of some of the nest boxes which were not ready on Saturday showed development was very slow and only one brood of Blue Tits were ready for ringing.

There are still no House Sparrows ready to ring and there was the second example of a brood of small chicks disappearing. This could be down to infighting or a very sneaky and agile predator, there is no sign of any struggle in the box.

Friday 19th

It was fair reward for the effort put in with eight new and eight retrap birds. The highlight was a Cuckoo which vied for top spot with that traditional late Spring bird a Redwing!

There were also two juvenile Long-tailed Tits.

Wednesday 17th

A bit breezy but still worth ringing. There were nine new birds including juvenile Dunnock, Robin, Blackbird and Song Thrush. Lesser Whitethroat was new for the year but best of all was a Firecrest.

Tuesday 16th

Back to the nest boxes today and 14 Blue Tit, eight Great Tit and four Starling nestlings were ringed.

Sunday 14th

It was a cool overcast start which quickly cleared for warm sun. The trapping area was quiet with Dunnock, Blackcap and Chaffinch new plus retraps of Chaffinch, Robin and Blackbird.

Saturday 13th

Last nights wind only dropped a little and so only a few nets could be used. The first fledged nestling in the nets this year was a Song Thrush.

Checks of some of the nest boxes gave a brood of eight Great Tits and another of four Starlings ready to ring. Despite the persistent cold winds the tit nests which have been established are keeping going.

Thursday 11th

One of the features of our pullus ringing is the House Martin colony on Sandown Road. At present things are not looking good. Up to eight birds have been around since mid-April but no more have joined and they do not seem settled, moving from one group of boxes to the next. Although there is still time for late arrivals it is our worst year on record. How are other people doing for House Martins?

Wednesday 10th

The Motus aerials a movement recently. A good sample of Nathusius' Pipistrelles have been tagged to the north of us. One tagged at Bedfont Lakes , near Windsor, in mid-April hung around there until April 30th. It was then detected here on the evening of May 1st and again 22 hours later.

Sunday 7th

More calm conditions meant seven new birds were caught - three Whitethroats and single Blackbird, Blackcap, Chiffchaff and Goldfinch. The main interest was late afternoon when a visitor picked up a Collared Dove in the car park. We had ringed it on September 23rd 2014 as a bird of the year. This is of particular note because we have colour ringed over a hundred since then and, apart from a couple, we rarely see them again. Thankfully it flew off strongly so where has it been in the meantime?

Saturday 6th

Good conditions this morning - overcast, very little breeze and no rain. Twenty-two birds were ringed of which nine were new, including a Garden Warbler. It is rare enough to see one of these in the spring let alone to ring one. The new ones included the first pulli of the year - three Great Tits. The other new birds were two Whitethroats, a Blackcap, a Chiffchaff and a House Sparrow.

Friday 5th

It has been very quiet in the main ringing area and so a visit was made to the south end of the area. This yielded seven new birds - four Whitethroats, and single Robin, Great Tit and Blackbird.

Wednesday 3rd

The last batch of boxes to be checked were in the Middle Field and the position there was much more advanced than elsewhere. Most of the boxes were occupied and a Great Tit brood will be ready to ring at the weekend.

Tuesday 2nd

The easterly was as cool as expected, but also stronger, not expected. This limited what could be put up but it was worth it as spring Redstarts are very rare these days. It was a female, sadly I have not heard reports of the male still being around. The other new birds were a Blackcap and a House Sparrow. The sparrow was just beginning to show signs of developing a brood patch which ties in with the incomplete state of the sparrow nests in the boxes.