Sunday, 10 January 2010

Catching Coot

It was a first for me this morning; catching Coot by hand in Stanley Park, Blackpool. Craig has been keen to have a go at catching Coot here for a while and with permission sought from Blackpool Council, this morning was our first opportunity. So armed with G rings, colour rings and six loaves of bread we made our way to the piece of water that wasn't frozen and where all the wildfowl were congregating.

The wildfowl are fed regularly here by 'Joe Public' so they have become quite approachable, but 'Joe Public' don't haul them out of the water! We were going to colour ring the Coot as part of Kane's Northwest Coot Colour Ringing Project, that's if we could catch any of course!

Ian in position

We started throwing bread out and within a couple of minutes Craig had caught the first bird. Then he got another, and another and then Ian caught two. Within 20-30 minutes we had caught and ringed five Coot. All of the birds were fitted with three colour rings in addition to the metal ring so they can be identified as individual birds. Not bad, but from this point on we didn't catch any more as the birds had become very wary.

Fitting the colour rings

Measuring the wing

The finished article

These were only the 3rd - 7th Coots that Fylde Ringing Group had ringed, the last ones being back in 1991 on Clifton Marsh. There were probably over 100 Coot on the lake and mingling in with them were 14 Shovelers and a couple of Tufted Ducks.


Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

Best bird in the book is coots but how far do they go and which way!Excellent stuff S. Keep up the good work.



Fleetwood Birder said...

I'll let you know dave if we get any recoveries!

Newton Stringer said...

I gather coots can travel a very long way, especially in hard weather !

Fleetwood Birder said...

I believe so. Hopefully we'll find out!

BirderRon said...

Oh you lucky begger ... holding my favourite bird! Sorry for delay in commenting on this but I've only just found the blog its on ... I'll click to follow it now ;-)))