Wednesday 20th April
A couple more ringers resulted in more nets up but apart from 3 Blackcaps there was little of note.
With sightings of fledged Collared Doves and a Blackbird the opportunity was taken to check the nest boxes. Several Starlings were on broods of 5 eggs and Great Tits wre starting their clutches.
Monday 18th April
Once again larger birds provided the interest. Out of 7 new birds 2 were Jays and one a Ring-necked Parakeet. The latter is only the third to be ringed on the Estate. The new Blackcap was a female with a fat of 5 which is suprisingly high at this time of year.
Sunday 17th April
Apart from a stiff breeze it was a nice,sunny, day and most migrants had continued on overnight. Nine new birds were ringed the most notable being a Jackdaw and a female Sparrowhawk.
Friday 15th April
The weather was not so kind today and showers set in well before forecast. Ten new birds included 3 Blackcaps, 2 Chiffchaffs and a Willow Warbler.
Wednesday 13th April
A beautiful spring day with scarcely a breath of wind meant a good effort could be put in. It was rewarded with 32 new and 21 retrap birds. Blackcap lead the way with 11 new birds, these were possibly some of the birds which appeared yesterday after the rain. They had not been around long as they had low fat scores. Six Chiffchaffs and a Willow Warbler were the other migrant species.
Two Collared Doves were new to the colour ringing project but none have been reported away from the observatory.
Sunday 10th April
16 new birds were made up from a number of suprises. 2 Mallard had been around the heligoland for a while without going in until today. As the adult Moorhens and their young were ringed last summer on the observatory pond it was a bit of a suprise that both of todays birds were new. A Yellowhammer was new for the year and also unexpected as they have not been feeding around the Whitehouse unlike the previous two winters. There were also 2 more new Wrens.
Friday 8th April
The nets could not reflect the range of interesting sightings but there were 2 Willow Warblers and 2 Chiffchaffs. Perhaps of more interest were 3 new Wrens and a new Blue Tit. Ringing goes on all year and so we would expect all the locals to have been caught already so where did these come from?
Thursday 7th April
Despite the forecast it was suitable for a few nets to be put up and 7 new birds were ringed. The list was quite autumnal and included a Robin, a Blackbird and 2 Long tailed Tits.
Wednesday 6th April
9 new birds this morning including a Redwing and a Firecrest
Tuesday 5th April
The usual light sprinkling of migrants, 1 Willow Warbler, 3 Chiffchaffs and 2 Blackcaps all seemed to be in good condition with one Blackcap fat score 4.
Sunday 3rd April
Conditions were such that there were very few grounded migrants resulting in only 9 birds being ringed. 4 female Chaffinches continued the trend commented on on Friday.
Friday 1st April
The calm and clear overnight conditions continued and so migrants did not stop but kept on moving to their breeding territories. 10 new birds were ringed including another Firecrest. The 6 Chaffinches were all females and it is interesting to look at the sex ratio over the last month. At the start of March we were catching nearly all males. Females appeared by mid-March and became the most frequent by late March. This is not suprising as the males tend to arrive first, so that they can set up territory first to welcome the females, but it is nice to have it confirmed by an easily sexable species such as Chaffinch.