Thursday 28 July 2016

Roost ringing and 2 French Sedgies

A control juvenile Swallow was among the 30 caught last night on the Teifi Marsh. It will be interesting to see where a bird with the ring from the series Z907 was ringed, obviously very recently.

We now have 4 trainees and with a keen Biology student home for the holidays from Oxford Uni as well it was good to be able to introduce some of them to roost ringing in the reed bed.

Every evening from about 20.30 the numbers of Hirundines over the marsh builds to several hundred. This month we have caught 65 Swallows and 1 Sand Martin.

(photo thanks to Dean)
Pied Wagtails come in to roost a bit earlier and 19 have been ringed so far this month.

As usual we are out ringing early every morning, weather permitting, to continue our long term monitoring of migration through the Teifi Marsh. Sedge Warbler numbers are increasing and a surprise earlier in the week was a French control. Although we catch several French ringed birds in Spring, it was our first in July but this year this was swiftly followed by another French control, this time with a Strasbourg not Paris ring.

Thursday 7 July 2016

CES 7....a yearly comparison,

On July 7th 2013 I wrote...."CES 7 this year compared to last year.   45 new birds this year..31 last year.  18 retraps this year..28 last year
Only one piece of data, but supports the better breeding season this year following a poor breeding last year producing fewer birds to recapture. 14 new Chiffchaffs and 7 Reed Warbler recaptures too..."

This year during CES 7 we captured  52 new birds and only 13 retraps. A surprisingly  low proportion of retraps. The Totals of  CES 7 for 2010-2016 are at the end of the post.

We recaptured a male Redstart ringed during CES 5. Back in 2013 Redstart was a not a species that we caught annually, we now appear to have Redstarts breeding more locally. The photo is of a juvenile taken caught during CES 7 last year. Perhaps a trend shown in the latest BTO Breeding Bird Survey report just published.

The most numerous species caught was Chiffchaff, 15 new and 2 retrap.

Reed Warblers have always been a feature of our CES, 7 new and 4 retraps this session.
We have a RAS site nearby for Reed Warblers, but we are interested in the Reed Warbler data provided by CES too. This season we have caught over 132 Reed Warblers, nearly all adults so far. I have a feeling that the 49+ new adults is unusual for to do !

Two of our trainees Dai and Dean had the chance to learn how to fit colour-rings on Reed Buntings, another species we are studying, and attempting a RAS project. Two adults and a juvenile were caught.

A good proportion of our Reed Bunting recapture records are from photographers. Many thanks particularly to Tommy and Colin. Great to add a bit of Citizen Science to a visit to the Teifi Marshes Reserve.

Three new juvenile Treecreepers were the other highlight of this CES visit.

TOTALS for CES 7   New      Retrap
2010     45   23
2013 4518
2015 6815

Monday 4 July 2016

More juvs and French controls

The first juvenile Sedge Warblers were ringed on the Teifi Marsh yesterday

Also the first juvenile Lesser Whitethroat and Cetti's Warbler.

Not an easy development for some young. Irregular feeding producing extreme growth bars in the feathers as this tail shows in one of today's juvenile Reed Warblers.

Although this is an old paper, the abstract does explain growth bars nicely.
Ptilochronology, Feather growth bars as indicators of nutritional status.

CES 6 was done last week with  just 48 birds caught compared to 82 on the equivalent CES last year.
The most interesting catch was a juvenile Willow Tit, caught with the adult that we ringed last week. As noted in a previous blog it would be nice to think that these are breeding on the reserve.
Other Tit species were notable by their absence, a different story on our garden feeders where Blue and Great Tit juveniles are present in large numbers.

Regular readers of the blog will remember that we caught a good number of Sedge Warblers on migration this Spring including 1 Belgian, 10 French and 4 UK controls. We have now had details from the BTO of another two of the French birds. Both ringed on Autumn migration last year.
FRP.7828959 was ringed in Sandouville, Seine Maritime on 6th August 2015.
FRP.7843214 was ringed in Mars-Ouest on 21st August 2015.
The latest two have been added to the map of other Spring 2016 Sedge Warbler controls already received. We are now just waiting for ringing details of 5 French and 1 Belgian controls.

We don't catch many Storm Petrels at Mwnt but last night 11 were caught, all new. This was our second highest catch at Mwnt. 13 on 1st July 2014 included 3 controls and a retrap.

Weather permitting, we are planning the next CES for Wednesday 6th July