Monday, 1 March 2010

1st March 2010 - Welcome Return of the Sun!

The forecast for fog was completely miscalculated and this morning although cold and frosty was absolutely beautiful and sunny at Chesworth Farm. Just before dawn the Skylarks were already in song and continued throughout the day, while about 40 Redwing and a couple of Fieldfare came out of roosting in one of the hedgerows. A pair of Grey and Pied Wagtails were displaying, as was a male Mistle Thrush and several Song Thrush and a male Yellowhammer.

The ringing there this morning was reasonable with 42 new birds being caught of 11 species and along with Jake, Eddie and Stuart being joined by A-ringer Val Bentley (pictured below) and observer Tom Forward.
Highlights included two new Reed Bunting, two new House Sparrow, three Song Thrush (including two new) and only the third new Wren for the year. Interestingly, we also caught the same male Blackbird with unusual wing-moult that we have caught the last three times here in the same part of the same net! It must just like being handled! Highlights of the retraps included three Blue Tit and a Dunnock all originally ringed in 2007.

To end the days ringing I was just leaving Warnham LNR after dark and as I was about to pull onto the main road an adult Mute Swan was walking part with cars trying to avoid it. I realised that it was one of the pair off the golf course that had come onto the reserve lake and in the process of being driven off by the resident pair even after dark was forced onto the road. I jumped out of the car and quickly managed to catch it ringed it and then took it back to the lake on the golf course.

A successful end to the day!

Birds ringed:
Reed Bunting - 2
Dunnock - 2
Great Tit - 4
Goldfinch - 4
Blue Tit - 16
Robin - 1
Wren - 1
Long-tailed Tit - 1
House Sparrow - 2
Greenfinch - 7
Song Thrush - 2
Mute Swan - 1

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