Theories abound when ringers don’t catch many birds, or in some cases no birds at all. This morning when I looked North, South, East and then West from Rawcliffe Moss at 0615, I was surrounded by low lying grey cloud and the omens weren’t good. Although it stayed dry the cloud didn’t break except for a fifteen minute spell about 8am, and it was only then that there seemed to be sign of just a little migration.
By 10 o’ clock I had caught 20 new birds with no sign of any more to come so decided to call it a day at 16 Chaffinch, 2 Willow Warbler, 1 Goldfinch and 1 Greenfinch. I caught four Chaffinches at first light, a suggestion of roost dispersal, with the remaining dozen soon after the brief brightness about 8am. In all I estimated 40+ heading over and then in a southerly direction in a good three hours, with a single Siskin and 4 Lesser Redpoll interspersed with the Chaffinches.
The first Willow Warbler caught was a small female, and with a wing length of 60mm, the size of a Chiffchaff.
Another 3J Goldfinch today with absolutely no sign of moult into an adult plumage.
As I drove off-site at 1045 I came across a huge but distant mixed flock of c300 finches, many of which were Greenfinches and perhaps the origin of the few caught here lately, like today’s young male.
There was brief interlude of Meadow Pipit movement this morning with about 10/12 singles arriving from the gloomy east and then heading west. Otherwise, and excepting the finches mentioned earlier, “vis” was zero.
Other birds, 2 Tawny Owls calling at dawn, likewise a single Buzzard calling but not seen, 18 Snipe, 1 Great-spotted Woodpecker, 30 Swallow, 10 House Martin, 1 Sparrowhawk, 2 Blackcap and a single Jay, a white rump disappearing into the plantation.
I’m ready for a lie-in tomorrow, but who knows there may be a spot of birding at some time in the day. If so log in Sunday for more news from Another Bird Blog.