Tuesday, January 26, 2010

A Winning Streak?

A second ringing event in four days is something of an achievement this winter but that’s what we did this morning when a little window of opportunity beckoned us to our destination, a farmland site near Myerscough close to the A6 between Preston and Garstang.

Chaffinch dominated the catch which we expect as the farm is close to a concentration of Chaffinch that feed and roost within the Myerscough College of Agriculture. Birds caught comprised:

Chaffinch 29
Blackbird 11
Reed Bunting 1
Dunnock 2
Robin 1
Blue Tit 3
Great Tit 4
Greenfinch 1

female Chaffinch


male Chaffinch


We found most of the Blackbirds still carrying visible fat with individual weights varying between 96 grams and 122 grams.

In recent months it is almost a triumph to catch a Greenfinch, and although there were a few around this morning, we caught only one, a typically dull first winter female as shown in the photograph with a second photo of a male for comparison.


female Greenfinch


male Greenfinch


Reed Bunting


It's very unusual to catch only one Robin at this location, and that a retrap from last winter; it could be that the cold and ice of recent months has already taken a toll.

Robin


Our ringing station is somewhat enclosed which restricts the amount of birding available in between net rounds but in addition to the birds caught we noted several Collared Dove, just a couple of Tree Sparrow and some distance away a croaking Raven, a species now increasingly common in the Fylde. A couple of days ago as I went out of the back door at home one flew over heading north. That just about puts it on my house list but unfortunatley the photo wasn't taken near my house but in Arizona.


Raven


Is it too much to hope that the weather stays kind and that we might manage another ringing session and reach three in a week? That would be a winning streak, but watch this space.

3 comments:

Birdringal-andalus said...

Dear Phill. I do not think a day of rain discouraged a tanning English ...
Now for the third part, I until the weekend in dry dock.
A big hug from these wet lands of the south
Fernando

Forest the Bear said...

Phil, your picture of the Ravens is stunning. They fit so perfectly into the landscape behind them. Last year I watched a couple of Ravens harrasing breeding sea birds on the costal cliffs at Wicklow Head. They are so agile in the updrafts from the sea, when looking for an unprotected chick.

S.C.E. said...

I'd heard Ravens were getting commoner, hope I can see some near Preston next time I visit home............

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