Saturday, 25 July 2009

Ringing - 1 Birding - 0

Ringing at Moss House Farm today after the absence of a fortnight due to weather. The conditions this morning for mist netting were absolutely perfect; calm and overcast. Six nets were put up in the plantation and four hours later we had ringed 31 birds and retrapped 8. Ringed birds included 5 Willow Warblers, 2 Blackcaps, 10 Whitethroats, 2 Goldfinch, 2 Reed Buntings and a single Sedge Warbler.

Willow Warbler
Goldfinch - male

I had a first for me today when extracting a male Reed Bunting in that it snapped at and caught a fly! As I held the Reed Bunting and it held the fly, it suddenly gulped the fly down. In all my 25 years of ringing I have never had a bird feed whilst being handled. we caught this adult male with a juvenile and it was probably just instinctively catching food for the juv.

The reason for my 'football type' title is that the ringing was quite good but the birding was poor this morning other than a singing Quail. There was absolutely nothing on the move, no hirundines, nothing! We were that desperate at one stage that we tried to string a howling dog into a calling Cuckoo. Don't ask!

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