Saturday, April 17, 2010

New Poll Shock!!

Dear Readers, don’t worry, the poll in question is a Lesser Redpoll and I guarantee this blog is about birds only and does not contain references to any political parties, politicians or forthcoming elections to make you either very angry or to bore the socks off you.

It was a totally fascinating morning’s ringing and birding at Rawcliffe Moss this morning which began when I loaded the poles on the car at 0530 to find both the bamboos and the car roof covered in a thin layer of frost that initially numbed my fingers, again. Thank goodness for the dependable vacuum flask.

320 feet of net later Will and I waited for the catch, part of which we hoped would be a few of the breeding Willow Warblers, because the singing males at least are back on their territories. We caught 6 new birds, a Lesser Redpoll, one of the few caught at the site, 2 Chaffinch, 2 Goldfinch and a Reed Bunting. Retraps came in at 1Reed Bunting and 4 Willow Warblers.

Lesser Redpoll

Willow Warbler



The four Willow Warblers were all males, each of them originally ringed in the same plantation in the breeding season of 2008. Three of them were subsequently retrapped in 2009, the fourth not. The latter omission may be explained simply by the smaller numbers of ringing sessions on site during the awful summer of 2009. We also caught a ringed Goldfinch but not a ring we recognised – another control to follow the one from earlier in the year. Goldfinch X818575 anyone?

The visible migration was interesting, varied but thin with a couple of Swallows only, 8 Redpoll, 1 Siskin, 6 alba and 4 Whimbrel with the star bird a single Fieldfare that chuckled north about 9am.


Other birds seen: 2 Buzzards, Sparrowhawk, 10 Goldfinch, 15 Curlew, 6 Linnets and 4 Corn Bunting with several of each resident Lapwing and Skylark.


Fleetwood Birder said...

Hello Phil, Sorry to correct you, but the Lesser Redpoll was the 14th ringed for the site! We ringed two in 2004 and eleven in 2005. :)

Cheers, Seumus

eileeninmd said...

Wow, wonderful photos. Are you banding them?

Phil said...

Hi Seumus
How time flies. Still a nice bird for the site.

Phil said...

Yes Eileen. Sorry if that is not clear. Over here we call it "ringing". Thanks for stopping by again.

A Garden of Threads said...

Great shots, nice to be handle then up close. Have a great weekend.

Sharon said...

Lovely photos Phil - especially the Willow Warbler. I didn't realise Fieldfares were still around - when do they all go?

Phil said...

Hi Sharon. The Fieldfare was a bit of a surprise as most went north some weeks ago. I guess there are always a few that get left behind or aren't in a hurry. Thanks for looking in once more. Phil

Denise said...

Lovely post and so many beautiful photos of the prettiest birds.

Unravel said...

The Lesser Redpoll looks so cute and small in hand.
Is it even smaller than the willow warbler?

Kristin said...

Very fascinating indeed. Nice study of the biodiversity and ecology.

Phil said...

Hi All. Thanks for your comments and support. Unravel, Lesser Redpoll is slightly bigger than Willow Warbler.

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