Last year I ringed 746 warblers at Billinge with the majority being Chiffchaffs and Willow Warblers with totals of 269 and 256 respectively and Blackcap came in third place with a respectable 173 ringed. Statistically there was a reasonable chance that one or more birds from those top 3 ringed species of warbler would have been recovered by now but, disappointingly, not a single one has been reported so far.
At the other end of the numbers scale I ring very few Sedge Warblers at Billinge as it is a dry habitat on the side of a hill with no Sedge Warbler breeding sites close by. They only occur as a very scarce passage migrant as a result and only 6 were ringed in 2015. All were caught in the autumn between 22nd July and 11th August with 5 being first year birds and 1 an adult. So when I received a recovery report for one of these Sedge Warblers from the BTO the other day it was more than a little unexpected, to say the least.
Sedge Warbler Z680292 was a first year bird ringed at Billinge on 07/08/2015 and was controlled 679 km SSE in Noyant, Soulaire-et-Bourg, Maine-et-Loire France on 15/08/2015. This is a fairly quick movement averaging at just under 85 km per day although it is likely that the bird covered the 679 km in a couple of overnight flights with a refuelling stop in between.
|Not the bird in question but one of the other first year Sedge Warblers ringed at Billinge last autumn.|