Saturday, 5 June 2010

No patch walk was undertaken today. The reason for this was that I was helping out the local bird ringer at our ringing site, which lies adjacent to my patch.

After I was picked up at 05:15hrs, we had the mist nets up and running by 05:30. Ive not recieved the final tally of birds that were ringed but the highlights were: A male Blackcap that had already been ringed by someone else, and a Garden Warbler that we had rung back in June 2007. This means that this bird has travelled to and from africa at least 7 times :-). We also trapped a Great Spotted Woodpecker that tried to peck its way through my mates finger, drawing blood!

I had an hour and a half this afernoon looking for Butterflies, and found this little beauty - Common Blue

Also, this Dragon fly, which I believe to be an Immature Black Tailed Skimmer.

I couldn't go back home without a quick Raptor watch over at Migrant Alley, but the hoped for Common Buzzard didn't appear, compensation was had by sighting the KESTREL and a HOBBY though. Also a GREY HERON and a CUCKOO flew over, but apart from that it was relatively quiet.


ShySongbird said...

A little beauty indeed. I haven't managed to catch up with one yet, this year.

Warren, something I have wanted to know for a long time...why is it that birds caught in mist nets don't die of fright either in the net or while being handled? Given that birds are so wary of humans I would have thought sheer panic could kill them, I know the ringers are well trained but I still find it intriguing, so it is good to have the opportunity to ask someone 'in the know'.

PS: GS Woody got its own back though :

ShySongbird said...

Sorry, that should have ended with :)

Warren Baker said...

Hi Songbird,

Birds are much tougher than we give them credit for!

Some birds hit the net and lay quite still, awaiting extraction, remaining passive all through the ringing procedure.

Others are more fiesty, and will fight you all the way!

Ive never known a bird die in all the 1000's that we've ringed, it's all about being calm around them, they seem to know they will come to know harm

Lancashire and Lakeland Outback Adventure Wildlife Safaris said...

One of my biggest regrets is not learning how to ring. Used to meet the ringers going out when I was crawling home p*ssed many many many years ago - not got enough fingers to do it now...
Keep up the good work and what fingers are left are crossed for your June tally


gypsyrose said...

your butterflies are so beautiful I haven't seen either of these and another dragonfly, I am so envious.
not even heard a cuckoo this year let alone seen one.

Jann said...

Really nice blue shots...I take it a bird 'ringer' does leg banding? Really cool to find a bird that has traveled to/from Africa 7 times, wow!

Anonymous said...

Warren, some years back i helped a local ringer with Swifts. Their claws are as just as lethal as a Woody`s beak.