Gary, Ian and I arrived at the 'obs' at 6.30 a.m. to be greeted by a stiff ENE breeze and because of the wind we only put 3 nets up totalling 120 feet. A Redwing/Fieldfare MP3 was put on, followed by a Greenfinch MP3 later in the morning. We processed 38 new birds as follows (recaptures in brackets):
Redwing - 4
Greenfinch - 29
Chaffinch - 2
Blue Tit - 2
Blackbird - 1 (1)
We have now ringed 304 Greenfinch at the obs this autumn without a single recapture! As it was coming light a Sparrowhawk perched up on one of our mist net poles. We knew of cause that it knew the net was there and therefore there was no chance of catching it.
Sparrowhawk perched on mist net pole!
For the first couple of hours there was quite a lot of 'vis' that included 18 Whooper Swans, 27 Bramblings, 57 Siskins, 100 Redwings, 6 Fieldfares, 68 Chaffinch, female Sparrowhawk, 25 Lapwings, 154 Pink-footed Geese and 11 Skylarks. All of the finches were moving north into the wind, but the other mainly 'larger' birds were moving south.
A party of 7 Long-tailed Tits moved through the hedgerows heading north and 2 Reed Buntings was everything else that we recorded.
Ian and I then went to the Nature Park to see if we could catch and ring the Cetti's Warbler. As we headed past the ICI Pool we had a Buzzard perched on a fence and unbelievably this was my first record for Fleetwood.
We set a 40 foot net up through some willow scrub and reeds in one of our net rides and put on the MP3. Immediately we caught the Cettis. We ringed and processed the bird and went to take the net down and low and behold there was a second bird in the net! So there wasn't just one Cetti's there were two! It will be interesting to see if they spend the winter here, and if they don't at least they are ringed and we might get some information on their subsequent movements.
Cetti's Warbler number 1
Cetti's Warbler number 2