On Friday of last week, I took the day off and, as the weather conditions were better than of late, I put up some nets at Sandy Smith Nature Reserve (SSNR). A decision that proved to be productive with 68 birds captured. 60 of these were new and 8 were retraps of 13 species. 17 were adults and 51 were juveniles.
A while back now, I saw a Jay on my feeders and a couple of others around my netting area so it was only a matter of time:
Above: The first Jay ringed at SSNR (this being the 46th species I've ringed here).
Above: An adult Kingfisher.
This was the first Kingfisher ringed here for nearly 2 years. Recent hard winters and the flooding of nest sites have meant this species has been in decline recently. Sightings at SSNR used to be regular along the river up to 2 years ago but have been rare of late so nice to ring one.
Above: A juvenile Long Tailed Tit - one of many ringed on Friday. At 44 new for year Long Tailed Tits in 2013, this is the highest year total for the site.
Kingfisher 1 (0)
Great Spotted Woodpecker 0 (2)
Wren 0 (1)
Dunnock 2 (1) - including a juvenile
Robin 0 (1)
Whitethroat 0 (1)
Blackcap 6 (0) - mostly juveniles
Long Tailed Tit 17 (1) - mostly juveniles
Blue Tit 3 (1) - mostly juveniles but surprisingly few of them
Great Tit 19 (0) - mostly juveniles
Jay 1 (0)
Chaffinch 7 (0) - including several juveniles
Goldfinch 4 (0) - including 1 juvenile
In contrast, a visit to Priory Country Park on Saturday morning, CES visit 6 was carried out and produced a meagre total of 12 birds. Of note were juveniles of the following species: Great Tits, Blackcaps and a single juv Whitethroat (suprisingly absent from SSNR the day before apart from one retrap adult). What a difference a day makes - even if it is a different site.
Above: A Juvenile Whitethroat
CES totals have been low so far this year. I've started compiling totals and comparing them to previous years, but there's still a lot of work to do. We know nesting is later this year because of the cold spring weather (and therefore there has been less food), but juveniles are starting to appear and only time will tell how good a breeding year this will be. The last 6 visits will provide crucial information!
Elsewhere, I saved a juvenile Green Woodpecker from being squished on the road. It may have been injured (not flying) so it was put in a safer place and left unringed.
The weather for this weekend looks good (a lot less wind) so I hope to have more news.