Friday, 7 November 2008

'Cute' Tree Sparrows

I took the morning off work today to do some ringing at my feeding station on Moss House Farm. The forecast for this coming weekend wasn't good, so I thought it would be a good opportunity to ring some Tree Sparrows. I always forget how 'cute' Tree Sparrows are in both meanings of the word. There is the 'cuddly bunny' attractiveness of them but their most frustrating 'cute' side is their uncanny ability to avoid mist nets!

'Cute' Tree Sparrow

And this morning was to be no exception. Although there were 195 Tree Sparrows at the feeding station I only managed to catch 15 of them! In addition to the Tree Sparrows I ringed 3 Chaffinch, Robin, 4 Blue Tits, Reed Bunting and 5 Long-tailed Tits.

Aadult Blue Tit

The numbers of Buzzards, sorry Common Buzzards (don't get me started!), were far less today and all I had was a single bird along with two Kestrels. Thrush numbers were perhaps up a little from a few days ago and I had 37 Redwings and 25 Fieldfares. Finches and buntings included my first Brambling of the winter, 9 Yellowhammers and 23 Corn Buntings.

The prize for the most numerous species this morning would have to go to Starling as I had 15,399. One flock alone I estimated at 12,000 birds and to be honest with you it was very likely to be half as big again! Numbers of Pink-footed Geese couldn't compete with this and I had 3,723 during the morning. The only other wildfowl I had were 6 Whooper Swans.

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