I've been unable to visit Sandy Smith Nature Reserve much recently, largely due to the weather being miserable. More info about a visit on Tuesday 26th June can be found on the Ivel Ringing Group blog here. This ringing session brought the first juvenile Sedge Warblers, Whitethroats, Blue/Great Tits, Great Spotted Woodpecker and Chaffinches we also caught 2 Starlings (only the 2nd & 3rd ringed here) - a ringing tick for David.
A visit this morning (Sunday 1st) produced more new juveniles including the first juvenile Wren of the year here but was interesting in a different way. The last catch produced:
Above: A Kestrel - the second to be ringed at SSNR.
A single House Martin was the best bird. A first for the site and also a ringing tick for me. A group had been skimming around low down all morning long (including some Swallows) in the area.
Above: An adult House Martin. A female as it had a brood patch that appeared to be reducing (B3 on its way to B4).
These House Martins aren't usually to be found feeding like this on the reserve until later in the year so I am speculating that these have finished breeding (I don't know if there were any juveniles amongst the flock). This was an accidental catch as they are not normally caught in mist netting activities unless targeted. I was lucky one made a mistake - others flew over the top of the nets!