Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Horsford Ringing

Over the last few weeks we've been making regular visits to our Horsford winter feeding station. There has been an increase in Bramblings with c.15 on the last session, many more than we'd normally get in the entire winter. Here's a couple of highlights from last week

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Waxham Recoveries and first Whitlingham session

On Monday we did our first Whitlingham session of the year, for mid May it was pretty good, catching 43 birds, made up of Garden Warblers, Linnets, Whitethoats, Blackcaps, Song Thrushes, a few tits and bits and pieces.

Continuing on the same vein as recent posts, another recoveries post, this time some Waxham birds.

Several of our lesser redpolls have been recaptured: 2 from mid October 2011, one retrapped in Surrey 516 days later and one in Loppem, Belgium 26 days later.

One from mid October 2012 moved locally to Eccles 62 days later.

View UEA Waxham Redpolls in a larger map

After a long wait, we have found out about a female Blackcap which was caught on 10th September 2010 and retrapped on 12th September 2010 on the island of Texel in the Netherlands.

View UEA Waxham Blaca in a larger map

Thursday, 16 May 2013

More recoveries - Swans on the move

Among the batch of recent recoveries we've had from the BTO were a load of Mute Swan recoveries, most of these were ring reads at Whitlingham, where we ring the birds, but a few birds went elsewhere.

Some Mutes moved out into the broads: W**537, 539 and 540 were all rung on 29th February 2012 as young birds, possibly a family. 537 & 540 moved to Hoveton and were alive and well having their rings read in November. Sadly 539 was taken out by powerlines in March at Cantley, was he/she with the others at this time?

A Mute Swan, ringed at Bure Marshes as an adult in August 2010, found its way all the way to west Wales where it was found dead in March 2013.

View UEARGmutes in a larger map

Another great foreign report came from a Willow Warbler; ringed as a recently fledged juvenile at our CES in the broads on 11th July 2012, it was then retrapped by a ringer on its spring migration in northern Spain on 8th April 2013. Wonder where it spent the winter? Hope it made it back to UK from Spain.

View recsother in a larger map

Friday, 10 May 2013

Cantley Recoveries

A mass of recoveries have just come in from the BTO. These are the records from Cantley, a site we started ringing after several years of it not being rung. To say we only did less than half a dozen sessions and it was a poor breeding year, this is an impressive haul of recoveries.

Looking at the tragectory, I wonder if the Spanish Reed Warbler passed through Icklesham? Then maybe through Le Havre (where many thousands of acros also pass through?), and if you continues the trajectory it goes straight to the Straights of Gibraltar. We've also had recovery of reed warbler from near La Rochelle before, also on this exact trajectory.

Also a Sedge Warbler that hit Power lines? Very Strange... faulty ring read maybe?

Ringed in Cantley

Reed Warbler - Age 3J - Cantley 28-Jul-2012
  - Retrapped Icklesham, East Sussex 12-Aug-2012

Reed Warbler - Age 3J - Cantley 28-Jul-2012
  - Retrapped Icklesham, East Sussex 12-Aug-2012

Sedge Warbler - Age 3 - 
Cantley 28-Jul-2012
  - Retrapped Levington, near River Orwell, Suffolk 10-Aug-2012

Sedge Warbler - Age 3 - Cantley 28-Jul-2012
  - Retrapped Oorderen, Antwerpen, Belgium 04-Aug-2012

Reed Warbler - Age 3 - Cantley 04-Aug-2012
  - Retrapped Icklesham, East Sussex 15-Aug-2012

Sedge Warbler - Age 3 - Cantley 04-Aug-2012
  - Retrapped Icklesham, East Sussex 09-Aug-2012

Reed Warbler - Age 3J - Cantley 05-Aug-2012
  - Retrapped Walberswick, Suffolk 08-Aug-2012

Reed Warbler - Age 3 - Cantley 14-Aug-2012
  - Retrapped Icklesham, East Sussex 02-Sep-2012

Reed Warbler - Age 3J - Cantley 02-Sep-2012
  - Retrapped Salburua, Vitoria-Gasteiz, Álava, Spain 11-Sep-2012

Sedge Warbler - Age 3J - Cantley 03-Sep-2012 
  - Dead, Hit power lines!, Chessington, Greater London 08-Sep-2012

Sand Martin - Age 3 - Cantley 03-Sep-2012
  - Retrapped Icklesham, East Sussex 05-Sep-2012

Contolled in Cantley

Reed Warbler - Age 4 - Cantley 04-Aug-2012
  - Ringed Walberswick, Suffolk 14-Aug-2011 Age 3

Old Retraps

Reed Warbler - Age 4 - Cantley 11-July-2012 (bird now 3 years old)
  - Ringed Cantley 21-Aug-2009 Age 3

 Reed Warbler - Age 4 - Cantley 05-Aug-2012 (bird now 4 years old)
  - Ringed Cantley 25-Aug-2008 Age 3

Saturday, 20 April 2013

A beautiful but slow morning at the coast

Today was surprisingly quiet at Waxham. Clear skies led to a heavy frost but turned into a glorious morning. Unfortunately the birds didn't seem to be taking advantage of this settled sunny weather and very little visible migration was taking place. A grasshopper warbler was the first bird in the net followed shortly by a firecrest which wasn't really a surprise, with them being widespread at various coastal sites in Norfolk in the last few days. Still a great bird every time! A Whimbrel and a couple of Yellow wagtails passed overhead, a White wagtail was on the campsite and 2 grasshopper warblers were singing. Hopefully, numbers wise, it will improve this week.

Thursday, 18 April 2013

More migrants back and a Control Chaffinch L5304**

Another morning spent at Waxham and a few more migrants were back. Whitethroats and blackcaps particularly arrived over night, back on the usual territories. Ringing here has shown that many of the birds we get at Waxham in the spring are returning birds rather than migrants passing through. True migrants in spring seem very thin on the ground, most passing up through the west of the country. The grasshopper warbler from the other day is still present, now in full song. It wouldn't surprise me if he is the same bird we ringed last year or the year before because he's singing from exactly the same bush, and sedge patches he did last year.

A control Chaffinch was nice (ring sequence L5304**), unfortunately it had scaly-leg on one leg (the one without the ring). This can occur from mites or from age, hopefully the latter.

Total: 33 birds, 24 new (8 retraps, 1 control)

Blackbird 1
Redwing 1
Song Thrush 1
Robin 4 (2)
Wren 3 (2)
Blackcap 4
Whitethoat 1
Willow Warbler 2 (1)
Chiffchaff 6
Great Tit (2)
Long-taild Tit (1)
Chaffinch 1 (1 control)

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Waxham: spring at last (with a touch of winter)

A touch of winter - female Fieldfare about to depart the country

For the first time this year we went to Waxham in hope that there might be a few migrants in. Yesterday we arrived predawn and set up. Ringing was slow though it was nice to ring a few Chiffchaffs. Chaffinches and Meadow Pipits were passing overhead in large numbers all morning but very few dropped in.

Totals for Friday 12th April: 11 new (2 retraps, 1 control)

Meadow Pipit 1
Robin 1
Wren 1
Chiffchaff 3 (1 control)
Goldcrest 3
Great Tit 1
Blue Tit 1
Long-tailed Tit (2 retraps, both ringed autumn 2012)

Today was all change, Willow Warblers had arrived overnight as had at least 1 Grasshopper warbler. Yesterday we did see or not here a single one, today the sound of WW echoed from all around the campsite, though not in great numbers (and several were at Horsey Gap after we'd packed up). The gropper piped up mid-morning but only briefly and his voice was a bit unstable, bit out of practice. Singles of Tree pipit and Yellow Wagtail went overhead as did 2 green sandpipers, several small groups of siskin and a couple of brambling. Unlike yesterday there were very few chaffinches and just a few flocks of meadow pipits. A couple of Little terns flew past along the beach.

Ringing-wise it was nice to catch a returning Willow Warbler, ringed last spring, a probable control Chiffchaff (don't immediately recognise the ring sequence) and a surprising female Fieldfare, dropped in late morning and went straight into the net. This is surprising because last autumn when hundreds of fieldfares were dropping out of the sky and landing in the bushes around the nets, not a single one went in, we caught probably over 100 redwings, 5 Ring ouzels and many Blackbirds and song thrushes but no fieldfares. They always sat on top of the bushes, never moving through the bushes, so never going in the net. Today I only saw 3, 2 of which flew over high at dawn, and the only other went straight in the net, very strange.

Total for the day: 7 (5 retraps)

Fieldfare 1 F
Blackbird 1 F
Chiffchaff 1
Willow Warbler 2(1)
Blue tit 1 (1)
Robin 1 (3)