Monday, 3 August 2015

A Few More Swallows

Saturday evening saw Ian and I back at the pools in an attempt to ring some more roosting Swallows. We brought the planned session forwards from Sunday as the forecast for Sunday was grim to say the least. However, as it happened Saturday evening was not too brilliant weather wise from a wind perspective and it had a limiting effect on our catch.

We ringed 35 birds as follows:

Swallow - 32
Reed Bunting - 1
Goldfinch - 2


We estimated that about 400 Swallows were roosting but the gusty wind definitely limited our catch. Starlings were roosting and about 2,500 came in to this sub-roost. I say sub-roost as we noticed that they come in early and then start to drift off in groups to their main roost at the other pools.

Four species of raptor made an appearance and these were female Sparrowhawk, Buzzard, male Kestrel and juvenile female Merlin. Six species of raptor is possible here with the other two potentials being Hobby and Peregrine.

The pools were quiet with just single Little Grebe, three Coots, nine Mallards and a Mute Swan. Our first Snipe of the autumn left the reedbed towards dusk and headed off to feed. There were still ten Swifts coming in to feed along with about 15 House Martins and it is quite surprising how late it is when the Swifts come in.

We will be having a couple more ringing sessions at the Swallow roost this week but with all the unsettled weather around at the moment when this will be I'm not sure.

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