Saturday, 22 May 2010

Quality Not Quantity

This morning I met Ian at 4.15 a.m. at Fleetwood Marsh Nature Park to carry out some ringing in the reeds and willow scrub. Three nets were rapidly put up and we hoped that we would catch a few Acros as they can still be moving until the end of May. 'Few' would become the operative word as we only ringed 5 birds and retrapped 2. However, it was all quality this morning and not quantity.

We ringed a male Lesser Whitethroat, 2 Reed warblers, Sedge Warbler and amazingly a female Goldcrest with a well developed brood patch.

Lesser Whitethroat

I say amazingly regarding the Goldcrest as they have been so scarce this spring after the hard winter. As this bird would have been a migrant you would have expected it in March or April and not late May.

Goldcrest - female

On the birding front it was relatively quiet. As I was unlocking the first gate at 4.10 a.m. I could hear a Grasshopper Warbler 'reeling' from a patch of brambles and this was the only additional species of warbler to those ringed that we recorded.

Sedge Warbler

There was no visible migration other than 2 Lesser Redpolls that moved east and the 7 Swifts and 4 Swallows were probably local breeders.

Whitethroat - male

A quick look on the 'deep' pool revealed several broods of Coots but not a lot else. Back at home I checked my moth trap and recorded 2 Flame Shoulders, Light Brown Apple Moth, Heart and Dart, Clouded Drab, Common Pug and Bright-line Brown-eye.

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