Thursday, February 28, 2013

On Target Again

There was a little frost at home in semi-rural Stalmine and with the promise of sunshine there was nothing to deter an early start for a spot of ringing. Out on the wide open and exposed Rawcliffe Moss seven miles inland the frost was more obvious. 

I waited in the car with a cup of coffee and the engine running until the sun came up and the Roe Deer had run in the opposite direction. A rampant Roe Deer can destroy a £100 mist net in the split second it takes the animal to crash straight through it. 


Roe Deer

The rising sun brought warmth and bird movement as they began to arrive for a breakfast of mixed seed - wheat, sunflower, niger, kibbled maize and red dari. Whatever is in the bag certainly works well enough with another 22 birds caught, all of the target species: New birds - 8 Brambling, 4 Goldfinch, 4 Reed Bunting and 3 Chaffinch. Two others were a Brambling recapture from recent weeks and a Chaffinch from 2012. 

Field Sheet

Reed Bunting

The eagle eyed may have noticed on the photograph of the field sheet a Goldfinch “control” - “control” being ringers’ jargon for a bird bearing a ring from elsewhere, in this case D137544, a second calendar year female. I knew it wouldn’t be mine. The ring was on the left leg and I ring on the other. 

Goldfinch D137544 

This is the adult male Brambling which carried a little fat, weighing in at 26.6 grams. 

Brambling - adult male

Brambling - adult male

Most of today’s Bramblings were second calendar year females. 

Brambling - second calendar year female

The morning’s birding was rather subdued with 50/60 Fieldfare and 200 Starlings still in the stubble field, 25 Goldfinch, 18 Reed Bunting, 10+ Brambling, 10 Chaffinch and 2 Yellowhammer. Overhead came 3+ Siskin, 15 Curlew flying west, 1 Buzzard and 2 Kestrel. 

Further down the farm track the Little Owl sat warming up in the bright sunshine but I couldn’t linger. Lunch beckoned. 

Little Owl - Athene noctua

Please put Another Bird Blog on your target list then call by soon and see what’s occurring. 


Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

A better day, hooray! So many birds and such beautiful ones. The little owl so wide awake in the daytime amazes me. I can well imagine those deer would quickly wreck a net (wouldn't be much fun for them either probably).

Gail Dixon (Louisiana Belle) said...

Yay for a successful ringing! Your goldfinch are so much more colorful than ours. And that little owl just melted my heart.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

I did not have the Eagle eye and could not quite see the writing on the field sheet, but I shall take your word for it;') I do see some beautiful Roe Deer and lovely frosty seed pods as well as a wonderful owl looking back at me. Those songbirds...such beauties too!!!

news said...

Hi Phil.Nice shot of the Deer All the best JWB.

TexWisGirl said...

love the deer and the hoarfrost as well as your pretty birds!

Karen said...

Worth the wait! Terrific bird close-ups.

Gunilla Bäck said...

Beautiful shots all of them!

eileeninmd said...

Phil, the hoarfrost shot is beautiful and I love the cute deer. Your bird shots are always amazing and so close. Great report and photos. Happy Birding and hope you weekend is a happy one!

Marie said...

Such amazing birds in your count, and wonderful shots of each of them! You are an inspiration! (Loved that first photo by the way!)

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