Monday, 31 May 2010

May Monthly Totals

With all the nest ringing a large number of birds were ringed this month with a total of 589!

The best were all new species for the sites in the form of five fledgling Rook and a Common Sandpiper, while other highlights included nine Garden Warbler, two adult and a nest of Grey Wagtail, a nest of Pied Wagtail, a Nightingale, two Lesser Whitethroat, an adult and a nest of Jackdaw, a nest of Tawny Owl, a nest of Grey Heron and a trio of difficult nests to ring - Treecreeper, Long-tailed Tit and Wren.

Birds ringed:
Blackbird - 6 + 9 nestlings
Blackcap - 9
Blue Tit - 8 + 235 nestlings
Canada Goose - 1
Chiffchaff - 5 + 5 nestlings
Common Sandpiper - 1
Dunnock - 8
Garden Warbler - 9
Goldcrest - 1
Goldfinch - 9
Great Tit - 7 + 114 nestlings
Greenfinch - 20
Grey Heron - 3 nestlings
Grey Wagtail - 2 + 5 nestlings
House Sparrow - 16 + 9 nestlings
Jackdaw - 1 + 3 nestlings
Jay - 1
Lesser Whitethroat - 2
Long-tailed Tit - 6 + 6 nestlings
Mute Swan - 2
Nightingale - 1
Pied Wagtail - 5 nestlings
Reed Bunting - 2
Reed Warbler - 5
Robin - 22 + 6 nestlings
Rook - 5 nestlings
Song Thrush - 7
Tawny Owl - 1 nestling
Treecreeper - 1 + 5 nestlings
Whitethroat - 8
Willow Warbler - 1 + 5 nestlings
Woodpigeon - 2
Wren - 4 + 6 nestlings

31st May 2010 - Sparrows and Greenfinchs

I was joined by Eddie and Chris Glanfield for the ringing session at Chesworth Farm this morning which was almost completely dominated by juveniles catching 42 new birds and 22 retraps. B rings were in constant use during the morning catching ten new House Sparrow (juvenile above) and 13 new Greenfinch all mainly juveniles, while other highlights included a Whitethroat, a pair of Blackcap and the best of the day a male Garden Warbler. A great find by Eddie was a nest of six Wren that was ringable under the eaves of one of the buildings (below).
Highlights of the retraps were the regular Blackbird ringed in 2007, a recent male Reed Bunting (below) and four Reed Warbler, a Chiffchaff and a Whitethroat all from 2009. In total now seven Reed Warblers have been caught in the tiny 60ft x 60ft pond here this year with five being males, one female and one unsexed and only one of which was new this year!
Other sightings included two Barn Owl, a pair of Yellowhammer, a Slow-worm, a Grass Snake and a juvenile Harvest Mouse out on the farm track!

Birds ringed: (retraps in brackets)
Robin - 3
Blackcap - 2
Goldfinch - 3 (2)
Great Tit - 1 (3)
Whitethroat - 1 (1)
Garden Warbler - 1
Chiffchaff - 1 (1)
Wren - 6 nestlings (1)
Greenfinch - 13 (2)
House Sparrow - 10 (1)
Song Thrush - 1 (1)
Reed Warbler - (4)
Reed Bunting - (1)
Blackbird - (2)
Great-spotted Woodpecker - (1)
Dunnock - (1)
Blue Tit - (1)

Saturday, 29 May 2010

27th - 29th May 2010 - More and More Nests

Thursday (27th) started with a early morning session at Southwater CP catching 21 birds of which 18 were new, but of only six species. The highlights being three Long-tailed Tit, a female Reed Warbler, a male Blackcap, three Blackbird (including the first juvenile of the year - below) and a huge nine new Robin which included eight juveniles.Later in the afternoon Jake and I went nesting at Leechpool and Owlbeech Woods, finding a Blackbird nest (four young) and then a Willow Warbler nest (five young) that took us far too long to locate!! But both were ready for ringing. Then onto Chesworth Farm, where the Robin and Blackbird nests we went to ring had both been predated and the Pied Wagtail nest had literally just fledged with three juveniles hopping around us! But the Long-tailed Tit nest was still very active and ready to ring - in comes Jake's small fingers and voila six baby tits.

Friday (28th) afternoon was back to Warnham LNR to continue the nestboxes for me and Kevin, with another 65 Blue Tit ringed from six boxes including a nest of 15 (the highest ever for this site) and a single nest of Great Tit with eight young. But didn't finish there.

About a week ago we noticed that there was another active Grey Heron nest so gave Gary Collier a call and was willing to have another go. So over we went accompanied by Jake and Katie and got up the tree to find three eggs and two only days old chicks. As Gary was climbing he noticed that there was a second new nest only a few trees away so quickly climbed that to find three ringable chicks that were also colour ringed bringing the total this year to 35 ringed! If I beg and plead I might be able to persuade Gary to come back to do that last nest which could mean we reach 40, but about three weeks away yet.
Finally, today, I did a brief session of ringing at home catching just three birds, a new Dunnock, a retrap Blue Tit and a new Jackdaw! A lovely breeding female, possibly one of the pair from the neighbours chimney (above). Also the last nest box in yet another neighbours garden produced six young Blue Tit.

Birds ringed: retraps in brackets
Robin - 9
Reed Warbler - 1
Blackcap - 1
Blue Tit - 71 nestlings (5)
Great Tit - 8 nestlings (2)
Dunnock - 1
Long-tailed Tit - 3 + 6 nestlings
Willow Warbler - 5 nestlings
Greenfinch - 1
Blackbird - 3 + 4 nestlings
Grey Heron - 3 nestlings
Jackdaw - 1

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

24th - 26th May 2010 - Warnham LNR Ringing and More Nests

I forgot to mention that Jake caught a new 1st year female Mute Swan at Southwater CP on Sunday (23rd), his first swan of the year.
On Monday (24th), a very early start for Jake and I at Warnham LNR ringing in the reedbed, produced just 26 birds with 14 new. Highlights were catching five Reed Warbler, two new juvenile Robin, a retrap Wren and Blue Tit both ringed as juveniles on 2nd Sep 2007 and a new male Grey Wagtail (above). The Reed Warblers included two new and a breeding female that was ringed as a breeding female on 9th June 2005 and only caught once since also here just over a year later on 25th June 2006 also breeding (below). This would mean that it has travelled to Africa and back at least six times!
The other highlight of the morning was a pair of Brown Long-eared Bat that were caught in a net as being put up (below), which were easily extracted, almost walking onto my hand, allowing a a quick photo before flying away!
That afternoon we then ringed a nest of seven young Blue Tits at Southwater CP that were inside the housing of a lifebelt, a popular event at this site! Then in the evening Louise and Kevin joined us for another trip around the nest boxes at Warnham LNR which from the 13 boxes checked produced 28 Great Tit in four boxes and 82 Blue Tits in eight boxes and unfortunately a nest of Great Tits that had already fledged!

On Tuesday (25th), I ringed the nest box of Blue Tits in my garden (12 young) and a box of Blue Tits in my neighbours that only had five young! In the evening, again a couple more boxes ringed at Warnham LNR were both of Blue Tit being of six and 11 young.
And lastly, I finally managed to catch a Woodpigeon in my garden this evening in one of the potter traps (above). Amazingly, this is the first one I have caught here in the 18 months that I have ringed here which is surprising since I live in an area surrounded by fields and woodland.

Birds ringed: (retraps in brackets)
Blackcap - 2
Reed Warbler - 2 (3)
Robin - 2
Great Tit - 1 + 28 nestlings (1)
Blue Tit - 3 + 118 nestlings (2)
Grey Wagtail - 1
Wren - 1 (1)
Song Thrush - 1 (1)
Blackbird - 1
Mute Swan - 1
Dunnock - (1)
Garden Warbler - (2)
Reed Bunting - (1)

Sunday, 23 May 2010

19th to 23rd May - Capel, Garden, Nests and Swan

A round up of the ringing over the last few days:

Starting with an all day session in my garden on 19th which produced just nine birds in total of which four were new, with the highlight being a male Blackcap! Where are all the birds!
Then, on 20th, Jake and I ringed a nest of House Sparrow (above) under the eaves of the visitor centre at Southwater CP followed by a new arrival female Mute Swan at The Quarry.
Then Wes did a morning session at Capel on 22nd which produced 30 birds of 14 species with highlights here being a late Reed Warbler, a Nightingale (above) and a Lesser Whitethroat (below). A nest of Blue Tit were also ringed.
Finally, today (23rd), Wes managed to ring a nest of three Jackdaw and another nest of seven Great Tit, both at Capel and I ventured slightly further a field to ring a nest of five Pied Wagtails that Louise had found at her office in Box Hill.

Birds ringed:
Blue Tit - 3 + 7 nestlings
Great Tit - 2 + 7 nestlings
Song Thrush - 2
Blackbird - 1
House Sparrow - 2 + 5 nestlings
Whitethroat - 3
Blackcap - 3
Garden Warbler - 2
Dunnock - 3
Lesser Whitethroat - 1
Nightingale - 1
Reed Warbler - 1
Long-tailed Tit - 1
Greenfinch - 1
Pied Wagtail - 5 nestlings
Mute Swan - 1

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

18th May 2010 - A Nesting Session at Capel

Whilst creating a new net ride at the Capel reserve today, Wes managed to catch two new birds, a Lesser Whitethroat and a Whitethroat, but then moved onto nesting and managed a nest of five Blackbird and 25 nestling Great Tits from four boxes!

Birds ringed:
Lesser Whitethroat - 1
Whitethroat - 1
Blackbird - 5 nestlings
Great Tit - 25 nestlings

Monday, 17 May 2010

17th May 2010 - Chesworth and an Unusual Nest Site

The normal Monday visit to Chesworth Farm started a bit warmer than of late and Eddie and I caught 26 new birds including four Goldfinch (including a juvenile), three Greenfinch (including two juvenile), a Reed Warbler, 3 Chiffchaff, 3 House Sparrow and 5 Robin (including four juveniles - below).
Once finished netting we went to look at a Chiffchaff nest that had been spotted a couple of weeks previous by Eddie and found five ringable chicks making 31 new birds for the morning. Also seen here was a Hobby, a Kestrel, a Buzzard and a Barn Owl, all out at the same time.

The best of the retraps included two Great Spotted Woodpecker, three Reed Warbler (including a female with a full brood patch already) and a Blackbird ringed in 2008.

During the late afternoon, Mandarin Ducks have been coming into the Feeding Station at Warnham LNR to feed so Jake and I made an attempt to catch it with a couple of impromptu nets but although one came in were only able to catch a new Woodpigeon! May try again soon. Whilst attempting this I happened to hear some chicks calling from the edge of a copse and eventually found the noise coming from a nest of Great Tits in the unusual spot of the bottom of a tree tube with a rose growing in it (below)! Thankfully, Jake's nimble fingers came into action again and all eight chicks were ringed.
Birds ringed:
Robin - 5 (2)
Goldfinch - 4
Reed Warbler - 1 (3)
Chiffchaff - 3 + 5 nestlings
House Sparrow - 3 (1)
Greenfinch - 3 (3)
Blackbird - 1 (2)
Great Tit - 8 nestlings (4)
Woodpigeon - 1
Great Spotted Woodpecker - (2)
Dunnock - (1)
Chaffinch - (1)
Long-tailed Tit - (2)
Blue Tit - (2)
Whitethroat - (1)

Saturday, 15 May 2010

14th and 15th May 2010 - Nests Again

On the afternoon of 14th Jake, Kevin and myself toured the nest boxes at Warnham LNR, with just over 40 in total of which almost all were occupied. A number were ready for ringing with 5 families of Great Tits (4, 7, 6, 8, 7) and two families of Blue Tits (10, 10), also a number of adults were present of which interestingly they were mostly last years birds on their first nest, but the oldest was a Blue Tit ringed in 2007.

But the absolute highlight was finding a Treecreeper nest in a Cricket Bat Willow that was accessible to Jake's little fingers and five chicks were ringed.
Today (15th), Wes drove past a field near my house and noticed some young corvids jumping about on the floor, so phoned me and I went over and very quickly managed to catch two very young Rooks which were only half able to fly and jump (above and below). While I fnally managed to ring the three Blackbird chicks in the garden on my return home from work.
Birds ringed:
Blue Tit - 2 + 20 nestlings
Great Tit - 2 + 32 nestlings
Treecreeper - 5 nestlings
Rook - 2 fledglings
Blackbird - 3 nestlings

Thursday, 13 May 2010

12th and 13th May 2010 - Quiet but Good at Warnham

On the 12th I put the nets and potter traps out in my Warnham garden and caught the disappointing total of five birds, three retraps and two new, although the new birds were a female Song Thrush and only the second Jay for the garden (below).
Whilst an early start on 13th saw me and Louise ringing in the reedbed at Warnham LNR catching 26 birds, with new birds including two Garden Warbler, two Reed Bunting, a Song Thrush, a Treecreeper, a Goldcrest and a new bird for the sites, a COMMON SANDPIPER(upper below)! Also caught was the first fledgling Long-tailed Tit (lower below).
The highlights of the retraps included a Reed Warbler and a Garden Warbler (below - note the olive pollen matting the feathers together at the base of the bill) both ringed here on 26th May 2007, a Wren ringed on 8th Sep 2007 and a Treecreeper ringed on 12th Oct 2008.
Later in the day Jake and I visited Chesworth Farm to ring the solitary House Sparrow chick from a nest in an open-fronted box and then back at Warnham to finish the day caught a Canada Goose on the meadow!

Birds ringed:
Great Tit - (3)
Dunnock - 2 (1)
Reed Bunting - 2
Blackcap - 1
Robin - 1 (1)
Garden Warbler - 2 (2)
Treecreeper - 1 (1)
Grey Wagtail - (1)
Reed Warbler - (1)
Wren - 1 (3)
Long-tailed Tit - 2
Goldcrest - 1
House Sparrow - 1 nestling
Song Thrush - 2 (1)
Jay - 1
Common Sandpiper - 1
Canada Goose - 1

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

4th - 11th May 2010 - Nests, Nests, Nests

This week has seen Wes do a session at the Capel reserve which resulted in the highlight of four Garden Warblers, but even better was his nest ringing being a nest of Rook involving three nestlings, a nest of six Robin and a Tawny Owl chick!

Whilst, today (11th) I managed to get the nets up briefly in my Warnham garden catching just nine birds including five new which involved the first fledglings of the year - a Greenfinch (below), a Dunnock and a Song Thrush.
I also checked a could of other nests, thankfully the Blackbirds are still OK now with small young, while the Blue Tits in the House Sparrow terrace have nine eggs and a neighbour's Blue Tit box also has nine eggs. But the letter box Great Tits just down the road had six large young which were duly ringed (below).
Also a Great-spotted Woodpecker that was ringed in July 2001 as a juvenile at Payne's Green was found freshly dead less than a kilometre away this week, making it a new Surrey longevity record of 8 years 10 months. A really good age for a woodpecker with the national record only 10 years 10 months.

And just to finish I can't resist including a very poor photo of a Hoopoe that I nearly ran down this week whilst on holiday in Mallorca (below). I then followed this bird with great success to its nest in a stone wall where three young were poking there heads out of a hole and four pairs of Bee-eater nesting nearby as well!
Birds ringed:
Great Tit - 1 (1) + 6 nestlings
Goldfinch - 1 (1)
Dunnock - 1
Greenfinch - 1
Song Thrush - 1
Robin - 1 (2) + 6 nestlings
Garden Warbler - 4
Whitethroat - 3
House Sparrow - 1
Willow Warbler - 1
Ciffchaff - 1
Wren - 1
Rook - 3 nestlings
Tawny Owl - 1 nestling

Monday, 3 May 2010

3rd May 2010 - The Tale of Two Nests

Jake and I went out early today to look at two nests that we ringed last year.

The first was a Grey Wagtail nest in an outflow pipe on the edge of the sluice at Warnham LNR that last year we ringed two broods of four and five nestlings and the adult male. Today the nest held five young and the adult female which were all ringed. The adult male is still the same bird as last year so I would assume that this is the same female. (Photos below)We then went over to a local wood where a Tawny Owl pair nested in a chimney box last year, but on inspection the box hadn't been used at all this year.

Birds ringed:
Grey Wagtail - 1 + 5 nestlings

April Monthly Totals

A really good total of 32 species ringed this month with obvious highlights being the Nightingales, the good number of nestlings (especially the Grey Herons) and the first big hit of warblers for the year.

Robin - 13 + 11 nestlings
Chiffchaff - 19
Wren - 6
Blue Tit - 9
Goldfinch - 8
Redpoll - 1
Reed Bunting - 3
Great Tit - 14
Chaffinch - 8
Blackcap - 19
Treecreeper - 2
Greenfinch - 9
Dunnock - 2 + 3 nestlings
Blackbird - 5 + 8 nestlings
Great Spotted Woodpecker - 1
Song Thrush - 3
Grey Heron - 32 nestlings
Reed Warbler - 2
Long-tailed Tit - 2
Woodpigeon - 2 + 2 nestlings
Whitethroat - 9
Goldcrest - 1
House Sparrow - 8
Starling - 4
Magpie - 1
Bullfinch - 1
Garden Warbler - 2
Lesser Whitethroat - 1
Nightingale - 2
Pied Wagtail - 5 nestlings
Willow Warbler - 4
Jay - 1

25th and 30th April 2010 - Two Quick Mornings

I did a quick morning at Southwater CP before work on 24th while Wes did the same at the Capel reserve on 30th between us catching 13 new birds. These were highlighted by another Nightingale at Capel where there are now a massive count of at least 12 singing males and the first Reed Warbler for Southwater (below).
Also, whilst ringing at Southwater a Robin nest was found containing five well developed young which were also ringed. And Wes did the same, although with a brood of Pied Wagtail that were nesting under the eaves above a front door!

Birds ringed:
Robin - 3 + 5 nestlings
Blackcap - 2
Goldfinch - 3
Reed Warbler - 1
Nightingale - 1
Whitethroat - 1
Chiffchaff - 1
Greenfinch - 1
Pied Wagtail - 5 nestlings