Well the weather is certainly not helping and today was the first time since Friday when there was not rain and/or too strong a wind. It was breezy but some ringing could be done before the wind increased and it showed that autumn migration is underway. Twenty-four birds were caught of which 14 were new. This included the first Wood Warbler of the year. There were also six new Reed Warblers, three Blackcaps, a Willow Warbler and a Great Spotted Woodpecker. Unfortunately the next couple of days seem to be going downhill.
On the nest box front House Sparrows are still busy with some new clutches but we cannot get up to check the House Martins in this wind.
After a long break due to poor weather and the closure of the area due to the Open golf, the footpath has re-opened and we were able to get going again. Due to various hospitalisations (not ringing related) we are also very short of ringers. It was worth getting back as an adult Redwing was caught. This is the fourth in that area since May. The bird was in moult. Once we started catching them we stopped ringing in that area and it looks as if that was worth it, will we catch a juvenile?
For the first time in a while we had the conditions and the ringers to put up some nets. Nineteen birds were caught of which 15 were new. A Sand Martin was the first autumn migrant to be ringed. Local birds included five Blackcaps, three Whitethroats and a Chiffchaff; all juveniles.
There will be no ringing next week as all the local roads and footpaths are closed for The Open Championship and the ringing area will be inaccessible.
The House Martin situation continues to look bleak another three nests were found to have failed all at the stage when the young were just growing their flight feathers. Timing wise it links to the cold windy weather we had maybe the adults just could not find food. We have not had such a poor year for them in the time I have been checking them.
A check of some House Martin nests showed the first birds fledged but another nest had four dead young, two of them at fledging size. Maybe one of the local Hobbies got one of the parents.
Friday July 2nd
A productive morning with plenty of hard work done preparing the Whitehouse for the autumn season and checking nest boxes. The latter provided two surprises with a Great Tit on eggs in one box and three ringable young in another box. This is the latest I have personally seen active Great Tit nests.