Sunday, 11 November 2012

Weekend roundup

I went ringing at the baited sites at Haigh and Longshaw over the weekend. Haigh produced 41 new birds and 24 retraps. Chaffinch numbers had increased on last week with 11 ringed; 9 of these were aged as adults which is an unusually high proportion. Some of the male Chaffinches were of continental origin judging by their colour but none had particularly long wing lengths. Again a few Bramblings were present and 3 males were caught.

Male Chaffinch (Fringilla coelebs). This bird is a typical colour for a bird of British origin. Comparison shots showing the variation in colour will be produced in a future blog.
I have only been putting seed down at Longshaw since Tuesday so I wasn’t sure if many birds would be present. Shortly after first light I was pleased to hear the calls of a good number of Chaffinches and Bramblings. By the end of the morning 34 new birds and 10 retraps had been caught including 12 new Chaffinches and 4 new Bramblings. The Chaffinches included a number of continental birds and one had a wing length of 95mm. The continental theme was supported by a single Waxwing flying north during the morning.

First winter male Brambling (Fringilla montifringilla)
Given the promising catch at Longshaw I made a couple of extra feeders from plastic drain pipe that, hopefully, will only need topping up once or twice a week. All I have to do now is work out how I am going to pay for all the seed that I am likely to use baiting both sites.
It may have been a disappointing autumn for many species but it looks like being an above average winter for a few and Bramblings are at the top of my list. In a good Brambling year I generally catch them in the second half of the winter so to have caught 12 so far this autumn is particularly encouraging. However it does indicate that natural food sources are in short supply which could impact on survival.
Totals for the weekend were:
Blackbird 3
Blue Tit 6 (+14)
Brambling 7
Chaffinch 23
Coal Tit 2 (+6)
Dunnock 0 (+1)
Goldcrest 3 (+2)
Goldfinch 3
Greenfinch 14 (+1)
Great Spotted Woodpecker 1
Great Tit 6 (+6)
Lesser Redpoll 2
Nuthatch 0 (+3)
Reed Bunting 1
Robin 3 (+1)
Wren 1
Total 75 (+ 35 retraps)

No comments:

Post a Comment