Wednesday, 6 March 2013

Totals, Tree Sparrows and Turnstones

The eagle-eyed amongst you will have noticed that I have updated the ringing totals for Fylde Ringing Group up until the end of February over on the right. This time last year we had ringed 600 birds, so we are somewhat lagging behind. I can think of various reasons why this might be the case including a poor breeding season in 2012 leading to less birds at the feeding stations over the winter and weather not conducive to 'mist netting' in the early part of the year. Let's hope we have a good Spring so we can catch up.

During Feb we added nine new species to the ringing list that were Woodpigeon, Dunnock, Blackbird, Song Thrush, Redwing, Long-tailed Tit, Coal Tit, Magpie and House Sparrow. I have listed below the top ten 'movers and shakers' as usual.

1. Chaffinch - 76 (same position)
2. Goldfinch - 46 (same position)
3. Brambling - 34 (straight in!)
4. Reed Bunting - 30 (up from 7th)
5. Blue Tit - 19 (down from 4th)
6. Turnstone - 16 (down from 3rd)
7. Tree Sparrow - 15 (down from 4th)
8. Great Tit - 14 (same position)
9. Long-tailed Tit - 12 (straight in)
10. Starling - 9 (4th)

The top five species ringed during the month were as follows:

1. Chaffinch - 33
2. Brambling - 32
3. Goldfinch - 19
4. Long-tailed Tit - 12
5. Blue Tit - 11

The Brambling totals are fantastic and these are a result of Phil's efforts at his feeding station.

I mentioned in a previous posting that I am slowly winding my feeding station down for the winter and I called to feed yesterday and had a Brambling, eight Corn Buntings, a Yellowhammer, 51 Tree Sparrows, six Chaffinches and a Great Spotted Woodpecker.

I called at our Turnstone feeding station this morning to do a feed drop as we might try and leg-flag a few birds next week when the tides are very high. There were only 20 along the side of the lake and just four came in to feed along with the Gulls. One had a leg flag and another was just metal ringed.

It would seem that the first Wheatears arrived yesterday in the UK, but looking at the weather charts for the next few days it could be a day or three before we get any up here. I'll be looking though!

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