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Posts Tagged ‘chiffchaff’

…on the 17th April. A clear bright morning with a light WNW breeze.

A modest 31 birds processed with a 14/17 new/retrap split and a good number of species caught including:

  • 8 Blackcap
  • 2 Willow warbler
  • 1  Whitethroat
  • 1 Lesser Whitethroat
  • 1 Sedge warbler
  • 1 Chiffchaff
  • 3 Song thrush
  • 6 Dunnock
  • 5 Long-tailed tit
  • 2 Robin
  • 1 Blue tit

 

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Saturday 1st August

I was finally able to attend another CES session over at Wraysbury. A team of 5 turned out for CES 9. A rather calm session wind wise considering this year’s continued windy weather conditions. In addition to the CES nets we added a further 5 x 60′ nets. The total processed for the day was 131 of which 67 were CES.

Saturday 8th August 

Wraysbury again for CES 10. A cool start with a gentle breeze early on giving way to sunny cloudless skies by mid morning with a light gusting breeze. A total of 114 birds processed with 94 new and 20 retraps.

Sunday 9th August

A busy day was planned for what turned out to be a very pleasant day weather wise, the sun showing for most of the day after a fairly chilly start.

Paul and myself were over at Woolley Firs first thing, a second attempt to catch a juvenile Firecrest and prove they are breeding in Berkshire. We set 2 40’s in the wood and played Firecrest at one net and Blackcap at the other, we didn’t have to wait long for our first bird, on our first check round.

Friday 21st August

A trip to Rutland Water for the Birdfair 2015 accompanied by Carl.

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The first week of June, 3rd & 7th, saw Paul and myself out and about in Berkshire, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire checking our owl boxes on behalf of Bisham Barn Owl Group

Barn owl pulli

Barn owl pulli

A week on the Isle of May 13th – 20th

Having missed out previously, it’s a very popular location for photographers, artists and ringers alike, and with limited space, a team of us, Carl, Paul, Marie, Tonia, Stuart and myself managed to secure a week on the ‘May’ in June.

The Isle of May boasts Scotland’s oldest Bird Observatory, which was founded in 1934, and is home to hundreds of thousands of seabirds, including Puffins, Guillemots, Razorbills, Shags, Cormorants and terns, it is also a stop-off point for many migrating species.

Transfer out to the island was courtesy of Roy, aboard the RIB “Osprey”, an interesting and rather exciting 25 minute journey due to the wind and a choppy swell which had us all thankful for the supplied waterproofs!
Osprey

 

The island has two accommodation area’s; the main block which is home throughout the season to the reserve staff and volunteers who monitor the vast and varied wildlife and the Lowlight Lighthouse which is where visiting ringers, birdwatchers and artists stay, duration is limited to one week.

 

Lowlight - IoM

Lowlight – IoM

The accommodation is well-appointed considering it’s an old lighthouse stuck on a rock, a recently added block consisting of 3 bedrooms, toilet and a solar-powered shower have really added ‘stars’ and a level of comfort previously missing, it’s not quite living off-grid but pretty close!

The six of us quickly settled in to island life and found a routine that suited all.

As always with ringing the weather plays a major factor in activities and that was certainly the case on the ‘May’, and as you’d expect the wind played its part and at times hampered our mist net deployment, however, there was plenty of other ringing to be had which the wind didn’t affect.

Throughout the week we were involved in various ringing activities; we helped catch and ring Puffins, part of one of the schemes being carried out on the island

Puffin

Puffin

we were able to ring Shags, Razorbills and Guillemots

 

 

Shag

Shag

 

Razorbill

Razorbill

 

Guillemots

Guillemots

along with some pulli ringing which included, Oystercatchers, Herring & Lesser black-backed gulls.

Gull egg hatching

Gull egg hatching

 

Oystercatcher pulli

Oystercatcher pulli

 

Gull pulli

Gull pulli

 

Gull pulli

Gull pulli

We visited the 4 heligoland traps a couple of times a day throughout the week

Heligoland trap

IoM scenic

Heligoland trap

and deployed mist nets when we could, these turned up a few species between them including; Rock pipits, Nightingale, Starling, Chiffchaff, Robin, Willow warbler, Pied wagtail, Dunnock, Songthrush, Blackcap, Lesser whitethroat, Garden warbler and Wren.

A fantastic week came to an end far to quickly and after a big clean up of the accommodation we packed and headed off to the boat, the trip back to the mainland was rather less wet and we were able to take in final views off the island as we departed, before we knew it we were back on the mainland and packing the car ready for the journey home.

I will return…

Photo gallery –

IoM scenic

IoM scenic

 

Guano cliff

Guano cliff

 

Fulmar

Fulmar

 

Lighthouse by Robert Stevenson

Lighthouse by Robert Stevenson

 

Razorbill

Razorbill

 

IoM scenic

IoM scenic

 

Puffin on the wing

Puffin on the wing

 

DSC00600

Midnight on the ‘May’

 

IoM scenic

IoM scenic

 

Monday 22nd June

Back to one of our Kestrel boxes to ring a couple of pulli.

Kestrel pulli

Kestrel pulli

 

Friday 26th June

A very enjoyable chat by Mark Avery at the Surrey bird club.

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Its turning out to be a right old busy year so far work wise, I seem to be spending more and more time in front of a monitor doing work and not doing fun. As a consequence the blog as suffered with a lack of post.

So in between the last post and this a few things have happened in my world, most importantly as far as I’m concerned is my ‘C’ permit upgrade, after 3 years, countless early mornings and over 1500 birds processed I’m now qualified to ring on my own.

Sessions since last post:

Woolley Firs 08/03/14

  • Bluti (Blue tit) 2
  • Greti (Great tit) 2
  • Grefi (Greenfinch) 2
  • Blabi (Blackbird) 1
  • Meapi (Meadow pipit) 3
  • Robin 1
  • Golfi (Goldfinch) 5
  • Skyla (Skylark) 1
  • Redwi (Redwing) 1

GMP 23/03/14

  • Bluti (Blue tit) 2
  • Chiff (Chiffchaff) 2
  • Sonth (Song Thrush) 1
  • Blabi (Blackbird) 1
  • Lotti (Long-tailed Tit) 1
  • Robin 1
  • Blaca (Blackcap) 1

Woolley Firs 29/03/14

  • Bluti (Blue tit) 1
  • Yelha (Yellowhammer) 1 – a new bird for me.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

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Wraysbury Saturday 4th May.

A large team congregated in the car park at 0545 hrs for the first CES session of the season, a quick gathering of equipment and a 10 minute march to site had us erecting nets and ready to go by 0645.

A mixed bag weather wise; overcast, windy and cool.

The first bird was processed at 0650 hrs and a steady flow continued thereafter until 1100 hrs when it was decided we should stop due to the increasing wind and gathering rain clouds, a quick look at a weather app indicated rain was close by. A hurried take down followed and a sharpish walk back to the car park meant we managed to avoid a soaking,  just managing to pack the cars before the heavens opened.

A total of 51 birds processed, 26 new and 25 re-traps, my processes :-

Chiff (Chiffchaff) 4
Sedwa (Sedge Warbler) 2
White (Whitethroat) 2

Windsor Sunday 5th May.

Another good turnout for CES 1 the first at Windsor since 2008.

A dry morning; cloudy with sunny spells, a steady breeze throughout which picked up for an hour mid-morning.

A few minor issues with guy rope length whilst setting up but on the whole everything went to plan, we set up the potter traps in new locations within the reed beds; on small platforms which enables us to leave them in situ between sessions.

21 birds were caught in total with 14 new and 7 re-traps, my processes :-

Reebu (Reed Bunting) 1
Reewa (Reed Warbler) 1

Baited Potter trap

Baited Potter trap

Comparing Sedge warbler

Comparing Sedge warbler

Mist net

Mist net

Woolley Firs  Monday 6th May.

A glorious sunny day saw Carl, Louise and myself at Woolley Firs checking the bird boxes for nesting attempts.

Woolley Firs

A2 @Woolley Firs!

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Saturday 13th April
A trip to Wraysbury to prepare the rides for the forthcoming CES season and put up a few nets to see what was about. Not a great number of birds caught but I did manage to process my first summer migrants of the year, 2 chiffchaff.
Saturday 20th April
Second visit to Tadworth Meadows south field on LBF with Skylark in mind again. Carl pulled into my drive under clear chilly skies at the agreed met time of 0400 hrs. A quick unpack of kit from the boot and a short 5 minute walk saw us in the middle of the field ready to set up. We decided on 3 lines of 2 nets and set up. We were ready and waiting by 0500 hrs, We didn’t see any birds on the wing until about 0600 hrs, it seems as though the birds had decided on a lie-in! At 0700 hrs and after plenty of marching around the field we finally caught 3 birds, unfortunately as we approached the net to extract 1 of the birds flew off. The 2 remaining birds turned out to be our total for the session.
Skylark on the farm

Skylark on the farm

We packed up at 0900 and headed back to my house.
Sunday 21st April
Windsor. A rather cold start with the need to de-ice the car before leaving home. A large team of 8 assembled at 0545 hrs ready for the final preparations for the CES which starts in May, this included hammering in the Willow stakes that we had chopped down forming the rides at BCA in the Willow plantation a couple of weeks ago, the replacing of the old guy ropes and some final reed flattening. We set nets up in the reed beds as we went, nets were also deployed in the wood area too.
There was very little wind early on and the early chill was lifted as the sun started to rise, by 0900 hrs it was fairly warm and very pleasant.
There was plenty of bird activity in the reeds and we could hear plenty of singing migrant Warblers including Sedge, Reed and Cettis. The first bird processed was a Wren caught in the wood. The first bird of the season extracted from the reed nets, which I did, was a ringed Reed Warbler, turns out we were old acquaintances having met last summer when I had attached the ring! To think this little 11g bird had flown to Africa from Windsor at the end of last summer and was now back in the same reed beds this spring ready to mate and raise its own offspring, truly amazing! A further 7 birds were processed throughout the rest of the morning including another amazing bird, a 7-year-old Reed Warbler first ringed in 2007 and subsequently re-captured every year since bar one, a fair few miles on the clock!
We set down around 1300 hrs having had a very productive morning. We left site and retired to the pub for a well-earned pint.
In bed at 6am!

In bed at 6am!

Prepped reed beds

Prepped reed beds

Taking down the mist nets

Taking down the mist nets

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…over at Wraysbury on Saturday morning.

A 7 strong team turned out at 0630. The fog hung around until 1000 this initially kept the birds quiet and the numbers were low, eventually the fog lifted and the bird numbers started to increase. We stayed out until 1330.

The final total for the day was  a healthy 75, my processed list:-

Blabi (Blackbird) 1
Chiff (Chiffchaff) 3
Dunno (Dunnock) 1
Goldc (Goldcrest) 3
Grefi (Greenfinch) 2
Greti (Great tit) 1
Lesre (Lesser Redpoll) 1
Lotti (Long-tailed Tit) 4
Meapi (Meadow pipit) 5

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