Tuesday, 30 May 2017

CES 3 - 28/5/17

The weather was just perfect for us to get the nets up by 6:05am, with no wind and a completely over cast start to the day.
Heather, Sarah and Chris were then joined by Kenfig volunteer Val who was keen to assist with the scribing.
The first round was a catch in the CES nets of a pair of bullfinch.
Later a family of  great tits had obviously encountered the WPS nets, though the adult birds were smart enough to avoid being caught leaving us with this handful of juveniles.

They were all of a similar weight indicating the adults must have had their work cut out to keep them all well fed. We made sure we released them all together to rejoin the parents in  the nearby scrub.
This robin was a very newly hatched bird as the colouring in the picture hopefully demonstrates.
The weather became a little brighter and warmer through the morning and the catch was then pretty slow in keeping with recent years CES records. The total catch being only very slightly more than the same session last year
Thanks to our interested visitors, Kevin and Tracy, for the pictures.

Totals for the day:

Saturday, 20 May 2017

CES 2 - 18/5/2017

Heather, Sarah and  Chris were at the pool for CES 2.
Again the aim was to collect samples for Sarah's project and the numbers whilst pretty low meant there was no stress on taking the samples and processing the birds. There seemed to be plenty of birds in the vicinity, but avoiding the nets. The catch was fairly evenly split between the CES nets and the additional nets in the scrub.
The wind got up later in the morning but by then most of the catching had been done.

Totals for the day:

Tuesday, 16 May 2017


We had a pretty good start to the season with a nice sprinkling of warblers. The water level was low for the time of year; still deep but thigh wader deep not chest wader deep. Sarah Davies came to catch invertebrates in the nearby habitat and gave Heather and Dave guidance in collecting bird poo ready for DNA analysis.

Willow warblers were about in reasonable numbers.

Several sedge warblers in the catch was perhaps what we'd expect at this time of migration. Hopefully a pair or two will stay to breed by the pool this year.

Sunday, 19 March 2017

Friday, 17 March 2017

Kenfig Reserve Centre - 15/3/2017

A change of venue for this session. Dave Chris and Heather were joined by Sarah at the Kenfig Reserve Centre on what was a perfect morning for ringing. No wind and just slightly overcast.
The nets were up by about 06:45 - 1 x 60' adjacent to the car park and another 30' net in the scrub alongside the centre building.
Not large numbers but a steady run of birds for the couple of hours we were there.
Interesting snippet of news received today was the report of a Goldcrest first ringed as a juvenile at the reserve September last year was reportedly found in Port Talbot on the 14th March. Good know it survived the winter and recovered from it's encounter with a window!

Some pics of today's catch.

Totals for the day:

Friday, 17 February 2017

Ty'n y Caeau - 17/2/2017

Heather, Leighton and Chris were at the site for 07:15 even though previous experience shows the birds don't get there too early. Along with the usual run of 5 nets (3x60' and 2x40') we also again added the short nets in the hope of catching skylark ( flocks were again in evidence throughout the morning)
We also added two  60' nets in a dog leg at the lower corner of the field.

Catching was again slow and disappointingly the added net was not productive.

Following information from recent publications (Demongin) a number of dunnock were aged as 5 based on buff colour contrast on the tips of the greater coverts and also the dark line at the tip of the primary coverts which becomes more apparent when the wing is partially closed.

It will be interesting to see how this detail is confirmed over the coming months when we are catching known age birds.
Also took a picture of a very clear age criterion for greenfinch.
Note the 3 unmoulted greater coverts on this juvenile male.

Don't often see pictures of blue tit, but they are worth it after the effort of extracting the feisty little things.

Dave and Becky arrived a little later in the morning to supervise and deliver additional seed. Did not however manage to bring better luck and increase the number of birds caught.
No skylarks so we went home about mid day.

Totals for the day:

Wednesday, 8 February 2017

Ty'n y Caeau - 8/2/2017

Heather, Leighton and Chris had the nets up at about 8 am though it had been light for a while. We know the birds seem to be late risers in these parts, or are elsewhere getting the early worms since we only offer seeds of various types.
In keeping with previous sessions each successive net round seems to produce more birds and we started with 1 and the last of the day provided about 12 though a few same day retraps were in that total.
A relatively rare catch for us was the woodpigeon. Quite a handful to both extract and process and we didn't have a scale large enough to weight it, but demurred from describing it as obese since that was obviously our fault. I also forgot to photograph it.

It was good to start catching the target birds for the site, namely yellowhammer and reed bunting.
Should also be noted that there were a flock of well in excess of 100 skylark, though our attempts at attracting them with a "tape" lure failed, as we are not up to the standards of our usual bird DJ (Cedwyn.) 

Totals for the day: