Saturday, 16 December 2017

Goldcrest movements 2017

This is the latest instalment of recoveries that haven't been shown in full before, although partial details may have been mentioned for one or two of them. The absence of any large influxes from the continent this autumn means the recoveries are only likely to involve birds from the British population.

Goldcrest                 JBX614 
Adult female 07-Sep-2015 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Caught by ringer 24-Mar-2017 Copeland Bird Observatory, Down, UK 
Duration: 564 days Distance: 226 km Direction: 306deg (NW) 

Goldcrest         HDB637 
First-year female 01-Sep-2017 South Walney, Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, UK 
Caught by ringer 10-Sep-2017 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Duration: 9 days Distance: 68 km Direction: 152deg (SSE)

Goldcrest         KJX423 
First-year male 02-Sep-2017 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Found freshly dead 20-Sep-2017 Hannington, Hampshire, UK 
Duration: 18 days Distance: 267 km Direction: 158deg (SSE)

Goldcrest         KAD230 
First-year male 23-Nov-2016 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Caught by ringer 28-Sep-2017 Oxmoor Wood, near Runcorn, Halton, UK 
Duration: 309 days Distance: 17 km Direction: 173deg (S) 

Goldcrest         EJY447 
First-year male 10-Oct-2016 Bidston, Wirral, Merseyside, UK 
Caught by ringer 20-Oct-2017 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Duration: 375 days Distance: 27 km Direction: 66deg (ENE)

Goldcrest         KNC292 
First-year male 19-Sep-2017 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Taken by cat 25-Nov-2017 Fromes Hill, Ledbury, Herefordshire, UK 
Freshly dead - within about a Week Taken By Cat 
Duration: 67 days Distance: 155 km Direction: 175deg (S)

The ringing site at Billinge is the black circle with white cross and is largely hidden behind the purple marker unless viewed full screen and by zooming in.

Tuesday, 12 December 2017

Minus 6 centigrade to plus 11 thrushes

I ventured up to Billinge this morning to see if the cold weather was causing any thrushes to move. I wasn't expecting a large scale cold weather movement as the cold weather hasn't been with us long enough for that but I thought the sub zero temperatures (about -6 this morning) and lingering snow cover would cause some local movement with both Fieldfares and Redwings moving in search of any remaining berries or, in the case of some Redwings, moving into mature woodland to search for invertebrates in the leaf litter.

It was one of those mornings where things didn't go exactly to plan and while I thought I had got up early enough the light covering of snow and crystal clear skies mean't it started to get light a little faster than it otherwise would. To make matters worse a shelf string came undone on one of the nets as I was putting it up which delayed set-up by forcing an impromptu repair. Despite these hiccups I still managed to get 3 nets up about half an hour before sunrise although it was getting quite light by then.

The first round of the nets produced an excellent catch of 10 Redwings and a Fieldfare but just after sunrise fog started to form and froze onto the nets, turning them white with ice crystals. This effectively ended the session and any movement but the 11 birds caught was still a good result and along with another 20 Redwing and 5 Fieldfare seen showed that some thrushes were moving before the fog rolled in.

Fieldfare 12/12/2017

Redwing 12/12/2017

Redwing 12/12/2017
All of the birds were a healthy weight and carrying some fat.

Thursday, 7 December 2017

Recoveries catch up

I haven't posted full details of recoveries and controls for quite a while but now that ringing has slowed down there is the opportunity to start catching up. This post covers recoveries of finches that were ringed in my garden and others that were ringed or controlled at Billinge.

Siskin S144871 
First-year female   12-Apr-2016 near Orrell, Greater Manchester, UK 
Caught by ringer 26-Jun-2017 near Kildary, Highland, UK 
Duration: 440 days Distance: 478 km Direction: 350deg (N)
This Siskin recovery is the furthest north of all the reports received so far this year.

Goldfinch  S552424 
First-year female 27-Dec-2016 near Orrell, Greater Manchester, UK 
Caught by ringer    18-Mar-2017 Calf of Man, Isle of Man, UK 
Duration: 81 days Distance: 151 km Direction: 294deg (WNW)
There have been previous exchanges of Goldfinches with the Isle of Man from sites in my area but this is the first one from my garden.

Goldfinch  S881290 
Juvenile 06-Aug-2017 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Caught by ringer  27-Oct-2017 Dunsby, Bourne, Lincolnshire, UK 
Duration: 82 days Distance: 174 km Direction: 116deg (ESE) 
Sexed as female when recaptured.

Lesser Redpoll AXA2748 
First-year male 18-Sep-2017 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Caught by ringer 07-Oct-2017 Whixall & Fenn's Mosses, Wrexham, UK 
Duration: 19 days Distance: 65 km Direction: 182deg (S)

Lesser Redpoll S800301 
First-year 25-Aug-2017 Barnacre Reservoir, Lancashire, UK 
Caught by ringer 26-Oct-2017 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Duration: 62 days Distance: 47 km Direction: 181deg (S)

Lesser Redpoll D717537 
Full grown 03-Apr-2014 Llanfyllin, Powys, UK 
Caught by ringer 01-Nov-2017 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK 
Duration: 1308 days Distance: 88 km Direction: 25deg (NNE)
This Lesser Redpoll has also been caught at Crawford (2km from Billinge) on 5 occasions in spring and early summer 2015 and once in spring 2016. It was visiting feeders when caught at Crawford and was thought to be breeding nearby. It was sexed as a male when recaptured.

Lesser Redpoll S275550
First-year 21-Apr-2017 Torwood Lodge, Lockerbie, Dumfries and Galloway, UK
Caught by ringer  05-Dec-2017 Billinge Hill, near Billinge, Merseyside, UK
Duration: 228 days Distance: 185 km Direction: 167deg (SSE)
Sexed male when recaptured.

S275550 adult male Lesser Redpoll, controlled at Billinge 05/12/2017
On the ringing front when there has been the opportunity to get out recently I have caught small numbers of Redwings, a few Blackbirds, a couple of Fieldfare and the odd Redpoll at Billinge and Crawford. The garden has also been reasonably productive with Goldfinches topping the totals there and a few Siskins are also starting to visit the feeders.

The cold weather and snow that has been forecast for this weekend could prove interesting and may bring some thrushes down from further north and see the feeders in the garden get even busier. I haven't had a Blackcap in the garden yet this winter but a good covering of snow and some frost may just help one come my way. So I think it is going to be a case of eyes on the garden this weekend and I may just start the next blog post on recoveries while doing so.