Showing posts from August, 2016

A Brilliant Bird Ringing Session!

Yesterday I went bird ringing at Cissbury Ring in Findon, West Sussex. I was quite interested to see what we were going to catch as I haven't been ringing at Cissbury for over a month.

And I wasn't disappointed! Getting there at 6:45, the nets were put up and there were already a lot of birds that had been caught. The first bird that I ringed was a Sedge Warbler, a ringing tick for me which was not bad start to the morning!

Throughout the morning I extracted my first Bullfinch which was a juvenile. I also a ringed a lot of Willow Warbler which were passing through the ringing site, as well as a lots of Blackcap. Other birds that I ringed were Whitethroat, Reed Warbler and Long-Tailed Tit.

Towards the end of the session, the penultimate net round, the other two ringers where checking one half of the nets whilst my trainer and I checked the the other half. After checking them, one of the ringers came over to us saying they needed a bigger bag because a Kestrel was in the net, a …

Rye Harbour Nature Reserve

On Sunday I spent a couple of hours at Rye Harbour Nature Reserve as my mum and I were staying in Rye for a few days.

It was quite hot and there were a lot of people walking around so we spent most of the time in 2 of the hides. In the first an Oystercatcher came really close to the hide enabling me to get some photos.

I also finally managed to see Yellow Wagtail, a lifer for me. A small group of them were flying around, calling and then landing right in front of me. There were also Pied Wagtail.

Starling, including a lot of juvenile were feeding on the ground behind the lake and there was also a Little Egret. Hidden amongst the reeds and islands was a Whimbrel and I also spotted a juvenile Sandwich Tern.

As we walked down to the beach a Dunlin flew past, calling, and 4 Sandwich tern flew past behind me, heading out to sea, a nice end to a short visit to Rye Harbour.

A ringing tick and lifer in one day!

Once again on Sunday I visited Knepp Estate to do some bird ringing. After a 25 minute drive we arrived there at 5:00. Once we had looked at some possible net rides we set the nets up, 3 in total with 1 on the edge of the reedbed.

Overall we caught around 50 birds. I ringed quite a number of Whitethroat as well as young Great Tits, Chiffchaff, Willow Warbler, Blue Tit and Long-Tailed Tit. The highlight for me was extracting and ringing a Reed Warbler for the first time.

Even though we had a hopes up for something different such as a Reed Bunting, surprisingly even though it was perfect conditions for the net next to the reedbed it only caught 2 wrens!

Another excitement, whilst walking to the nets, was seeing and hearing my very first Turtle Dove! Although I didn't get any photos of it I got a good view through my binoculars as it sat on a branch of a dead tree (Thanks to Penny Green for helping me spot it!!)

Bird ringing at Knepp Estate

On Sunday morning I woke up at 3:45 to arrive at Knepp estate (one of the largest re-wilding projects in Lowland Europe) at 5:00 for a ringing session. I was really looking forward to it as I had never been to Knepp Estate before.

 After meeting with some of the ringing 'team' we started to put the nets up. Whilst doing so I heard the squawk of a Tawny Owl in the distance. 2 Great Crested Grebe where on the pond (Hammer Pond) next to us along with there chicks. A Cormorant also kept flying over. Overall I ringed quite a few Chiffchaff as well as a Dunnock, Blue Tit, Great Tit, Garden Warbler and 2 juvenile Blackbirds. It was also nice to practise my extracting (getting the birds out of the mist nets) because of the variety and amount of birds. Whilst extracting, James (@My_Wild_Life) spotted a Purple Emperor, my first in fact.
One of my highlights from the session was a Juvenile Green Woodpecker which as we were doing a net round it flew in the net. As quickly as possible a co…