Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Rings and Things

It was ringing on the moss this morning with a fine forecast and a light south or south easterly, ideal conditions so we hoped for a little obvious migration as most things now seem a little late in comparison to our accustomed sightings in recent years of early March Meadow Pipits, Wheatears and Sand Martins.

It proved an interesting morning that started well by a Barn Owl taking an overhead close look at me as I stood at the car in the 6am semi dark as I waited for Will.

We set 5 nets at 280ft and waited. There was a little Meadow Pipit movement from south to north although we didn’t catch any. In fact it was very quiet with only 6 birds trapped, 2 Goldfinch both females, 1 Reed Bunting and 1 Blackbird with 2 retrapped Dunnock from 2009, a male and a female in the same net. During our net rounds, we flushed a Woodcock from the plantation which flew off and around to land back in the trees further up from where we worked. Also cryptic wader wise, a single Snipe flew from the peaty field beside the track and headed into the far distance.

Goldfinch

Reed Bunting

Top of The Moss

Obvious visible migration came in the form of about 12 Meadow Pipits, 2 Golden Plover and 12 Curlew heading north but otherwise probably local birds only moving about the moss and along the hedgerows i.e. Linnet 8, Tree Sparrow 15, Yellowhammer 4, Kestrel 2, Buzzard 1, Long-tailed Tit 2, Blackbird 6, Reed Bunting 5 and Goldfinch 6. We watched a pair of Corn Bunting throughout the morning, the male singing constantly then later I found a flock of 16 still hanging around the old tailings.

Because we finished ringing in good time I spent a while attempting some photography near the barn.

Yellowhammer

Chaffinch

Chaffinch

Yellowhammer

Collared Dove

Brown Hare

What a brilliant morning! Alright we didn’t catch a lot but we got a picture of what was happening on the migration front and an update on the local population and as we always say “You never know until you try”.

7 comments:

Mark Whittaker said...

Great blog ..

eileeninmd said...

You had a great birding outing, Phil! I love all your bird photos and the Hare. I would have loved to have seen the Barn Owl in flight. The Yellowhammer is a colorful bird and the female Goldfinches are pretty too.

Bill Benish said...

What a fine array of birds you had, plus the hare!

Dale Forbes said...

any swallows around yet?

Phil said...

Hi Dale, Not yet - March 29th for me last year but things are slower this time around. Thanks for looking in. Phil

Dale Forbes said...

I know there are still large numbers in South Africa, but I had also heard that some local birders had picked up a couple of barnies last week. so far I have only seen one crag martin...

Happy birding,
Dale
http://alpinebirds.blogspot.com

Joop Zand said...

Great pictures Phil.

greetings, Joop

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