Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Latest news & recoveries

The latest news is, and this comes as no surprise to you all, IT HAS BEEN VERY VERY WINDY. The jet stream being in the wrong place for the time of year (i.e. more or less over us rather than much further north) is causing the colder and windier weather to affect us, to the extent that I didn't manage any ringing last weekend.

Whilst no ringing does not make a happy me, the following information does!

Corn Bunting (NW59646) ringed as a juvenile at Steeple Morden, Cambridgeshire was recaptured by me at Priory Country Park on 13/01/13, 557 days later. A movement of 23 km in a WNW direction. This, to the best of my knowledge, is the first recovery of this species for Bedfordshire (there are less than 100 nationally up to 2012 according to BTO online recoveries data). A nice result.

Long Tailed Tit (DPN712) ringed at Paxton Pits Nature Reserve, Cambridgeshire, was recaptured by me at Sandy Smith Nature Reserve, Bedfordshire on 29/03/13, 556 days later. A movement of 26km in a SSW direction.

Lesser Redpoll (Y486464) ringed at Priory Country Park, Bedfordshire, was recaptured at Bourne Wood, Lincolnshire on 13/04/13, 167 days later. A movement of 71 km in a Northerly direction. This bird was ringed on the same day as a Lesser Redpoll was controlled that had been ringed at Bestwood, South Nottinghamshire. So we now have evidence of an Autumn movement south and a northerly spring movement.

In other news, we've ringed several junvenile Robins, 2 juvenile Blackbirds, a juvenile Dunnock, Chaffinch and Great Spotted Woodpecker. Despite it being a late breeding season (due to the weather), there must be more juveniles out there but without the right weather conditions for mist netting, this ringer won't be catching any of them!

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Sardinian Birds 2013 - Final installment

This will be the last in my series of photographs of Sardinian birds. I've not run out of photographs, it's just that it would get a bit repetitive if I shared any more (and really out of date!).

I'm also expecting the bird ringing to pick up (first juveniles of Robin, Dunnock, Blackbird, Chaffinch and Great Spotted Woodpecker have been ringed), especially as the juveniles are beginning to fledge - even if the wind is reducing the catch or preventing me from getting out at all. There is news on the ringing front to come soon, but first:

Above: Bee-Eaters. We saw a number of these and found that they prefer cultivated land.

Above: Grey Wagtail. Seen by the spring at Su Goroppu (a gorge), this bird was very showy (presumably well used to lots of people as this is a very well visited site).

Above: Grey Wagtail. The hole in the rock above the bird was, presumably, a nest site as the bird disappeared inside for more than a minute (either that or a good source of insects!).

Above & Below: Flamingo. Strange looking birds, but nice to see in the wild. The pink in the wing is striking when seen in flight when they look almost comical!

I observed the birds appearing to scrape the bottom of the lake with their feet whilst feeding (presumably to disturb the food making it easier to catch - interesting behaviour. They also, from time to time, had arguements (either this or displaying to eachother) - puffing up the feathers on their back (almost swan like) and gesturing with their neck - occasionally making contact with bills.

The holiday in Sardinia started and finished with this species and is therefore a good place to end.

Saturday, 1 June 2013

Again with birds from Sardinia

The bird ringing is still going slow and no juveniles have been caught yet so it's no wonder that I haven't stopped looking back at my bird photographs from Sardnia just yet!

Above: A Wood Warbler

This lovely little bird was awaiting us after a long walk uphill from one of the beaches we visited. We got back to the car park and were taking on board drinks when I saw it and decided to see what it was. Surprisingly, it let somebody (not me) within about a metre before flying off. I follwed it as it fed around the rocks next to the car park, bouncing around and flying from one rock to the next.

Above: A view of the rear of the Wood Warbler.

I like the way all the primaries, secondaries and tertiary feathers can all be seen, and that its head is to one side as though it's contemplating where the next meal is!

Above: Side view of the Wood Warbler.

Above: A Firecrest

A terrible photograph (the bird was too close for the camera to focus!) - but none the less the bird can be identified as a Firecrest. The long walk was worth it just to see this bird! At the end of this walk was the Wood Warbler (as above).

Above: A Hooded Crow

Whilst scouring the beachfront restaurants for (cheap) places to eat, I watched this Hooded Crow walking and hopping around the rock pools. I found this to be interesting behaviour...

Above: This is the exact point when the Hooded Crow picked out a crab from the rock pool!

On the second to last day, we went out for a pre-breakfast walk to the river in Orosei where there were plenty of birds flitting around including Cetti's Warblers, Jays, Turtle Doves and more Coot & Moorhen than we'd seen at countless other water sites.

The best find wasn't mine though as my dad got there first...

Above: How many Night Herons can you see in this photograph? You should be able to find a handful of them...

I guess it was a family party. They didn't move and it took me a while to realise there were five, but good views were had.

And that's it until next time when I'll continue the found in/near water theme.