Saturday, 17 June 2017

Bumper morning

An unexpected large catch of 136 birds, including five Swallow pulli, of 17 species created excitement for the small team of six ringers this morning. No rarities of course, but a good number of juvenile birds visiting the Wetlands. The highlight was a breeding second year female Lesser Whitethroat and number of Reed Warblers that had been ringed by the Group in previous years, including a control.

The tally was: Robin 11; Greenfinch 15; Reed Bunting 1; Lesser Whitethroat 1; Chaffinch 15; Goldfinch 10; Reed Warbler 21; Chiffchaff 13; Blackcap 9; Sedge Warbler 2; Cetti's Warbler 3; Great Tit 10; Blue Tit 7; Bullfinch 2; Blackbird 7; and Dunnock 4. 

One of the five Swallow pulli (Photo Sue Murphy)

Breeding female Lesser Whitethroat (Photo Mike Tyler)

Juvenile Goldfinch (Photo Mike Tyler)

Friday, 9 June 2017

Kestrel chicks

Kestrel boxes erected on the Wetlands produced two nests containing five and four nestlings respectively, which were ringed yesterday.




Monday, 5 June 2017

Early risers catch the birds!

Today the Group of six ringers caught 95 birds before the storms arrived. Of those 31 House Martins and 12 Sand Martins were ringed after flying low catching insects. Fifteen further species were caught concluding a really good morning's catch.

Just after taking the nets down a lovely Red-back Shrike decided to put in an appearance. Anyway, one cannot be too greedy.

Thursday, 25 May 2017

A Reed Warbler haul with a surprise!

This week's programmed session expected to perhaps slightly different in that we were working at the far end of Colyford Common and in the relatively new reed bed. Out of 59 birds caught and processed 23 were Reed Warblers. One of these warblers was first caught by the Group  as an adult female on 16th July 2009 and subsequently again on 26th June 2012, 21st May 2013 and finally on 24th May 2017. When first caught as an adult there was no indication when it had hatched       which could have been in 2008 or even earlier. In any event we do know it had migrated to Africa and back at least nine times. Quite a remarkable feat. This information certainly shows the importance of monitoring migrant warblers.

Of the other species of which there were ten, included Blue Tit, Robin, House Sparrow, Greenfinch, Dunnock, Linnet (see photo), Goldfinch, Whitethroat (see Photo), Wren and Great Tit.

An interesting and enjoyable morning.


Two photos of the adult female Linnet (Photo Doug Rudge)

Adult male Whitethroat (Photo Sue Murphy)

Monday, 15 May 2017

First weekend session

The Group three times a year hold a weekend session and the last weekend was our first with an encouraging catch. A total of of 98 birds of 22 species were catch and ringed. A wide variety of migrants and resident species. One was an adult male Moorhen shown in the photograph below.

Adult male Moorhen
(Photograph Sue Murphy)

Thursday, 4 May 2017

Few birds caught despite dawn chorus

When birds are busy nesting our catches can be limited, especially if migration falls are few on the day. Yesterday was no exception, nevertheless 21 birds were caught including several Reed and Sedge Warblers, 

Sedge Warbler

Male Goldfinch

Photos by Nicola Russell

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Latest catch

The Group travelled to the edge of the Seaton Wetlands to work the new reed beds and set nets in and close to the Crop Field. This area can be a gamble with many catches containing interesting species visiting the Wetlands. On this occasion, last Saturday, only 24 birds were caught. No real highlights, but the 34 members of the public who made the distance to see us ringing birds was nevertheless a bonus for them. The catch included Greenfinch 3, Wren 2, Great Tit 4, Goldfinch 1, Reed Bunting 2, Long-tailed Tit 2, Blackbird 1, Blue Tit 2, Reed Warbler 1, Robin 1, Cetti's Warbler 2, and Dunnock 3.

Male Greenfinch

Long-tailed Tit

Photographs Nigel Marsh
Male Reed Bunting

Reed Warbler

Photographs Luke Broderick