Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Knowing The Score

I’m sure the car was on autopilot this morning, instinctively heading east towards Out Rawcliffe and the moss lands where Will and I met up again on a fairly calm morning but with a BBC prognosis of worse to come. But as ever optimism is the key, and if we believed everything the experts said about the weather and waited each time for the perfect forecast we would hardly ever get out. Besides which our other philosophy and guiding principle is, “If you don’t go, you don’t know”.

We certainly knew today that it was going to be a quiet session with “phyllloscs” calling at first light but not much else. The Sedge Warblers that until two days ago had sung their hearts out in mimicking Goldfinch, Whitethroat and sundry others, were now silent with not a one caught. Even the Whitethroats dried up this morning. In fact, let’s not prolong the agony; we caught 12 birds only, 7 new and 5 recaptures. Although to be fair to ourselves we did put up two less nets as a safeguard against the likely increase in wind strength, then soon after incoming rain forced an early termination of our efforts.

Consolation for the lack of numbers came in the form of two birds always sought after when we captured a juvenile each of Garden Warbler and Lesser Whitethroat. Other new birds were singles of Robin and Whitethroat. 3 fresh Willow Warblers completed the “new” and 5 other Willow Warblers were recaptures. One of these, an adult male AVC159 had avoided us on our visits since 23 April the previous date of capture – unless of course it had been elsewhere throughout May, June, July and the first few days of August? But on the other hand we first ringed it as a juvenile on 11th July 2009, so we could reasonably expect it to be active around the plantation and find our nets during these summer months. Oh what mysteries these birds provide.

Lesser Whitethroat - juvenile

Garden Warbler - juvenile

Robin

Here Comes That Rain Again

“Others” seen today before the rains came; 100+ Swallow, 6 Stock Dove, 2 Buzzard, Great-spotted Woodpecker and a Snipe.

Finally I must mention the positive feedback from readers of the blog a few days ago when I posted a picture of a Wren. So for those troubled souls, Wren Groupies, who have probably never had to extract one from a mist net, here is another picture of the infamous Wren.

Wren

4 comments:

Unravel said...

The Lesser Whitethroat and the Garden Warbler looks very interesting.
I've seen the Lesser Whitethroat once in India. Not sure if it's already split into different species or not...

Moore Patcher said...

Gorgeous L.Whitethroat m8y! BUT, Juv Garden Warbler pips it for me - wot a lil beauty!!!

Mary Howell Cromer said...

That little Robin is such a cute perky little bird. Ours over the pond are greatly different than your variety and I love yours. better today I hope~

Joop Zand said...

I like these bird pictures,
well done Phil.

greetings, Joop

thanks for your reaction on my blog.

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