Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Barn Owls

Our first post winter check of four Barn Owl boxes produced a pair at a site where they've not bred before. The female, pictured, was already ringed and a control GC85185 (from memory). Fingers crossed for pulli later in the year.

Barn Owl

Sunday, 19 February 2012

Some days you just get lucky

A bit windy here this weekend so I thought it about time I updated you on our luck last Sunday. Once again, a small group of us were out targeting the corn feeders at Bishop Monkton. It was much warmer this weekend so four nets were opened. Up until 10:30 it was an average morning.

Green Woodpecker

Our 30 minutes of luck then started. We were pleased with an unexpected Kingfisher on our planned net round (ringing tick for Anita). I then set out to try and tape lure a Green Woodpecker into the far net. But, flushed it in on the way there (ringing tick for me). Whilst ringing these we got great views of a fox that walked out into the open right in front of the shed. And then, while still ringing the last net round, Dave somehow manages to spot a female Sparrowhawk heading in the direction of our feeder nets – He runs off and returns with said Sparrowhawk (ringing tick for Natasha).

Anita with her first Kingfisher

Natasha with her first Sparrowhawk

42 New birds and (20) retraps – Yellowhammer 16(2), Reed Bunting 9(8), Dunnock (7) Chaffinch 5, Blackbird 4, Great Tit 1(2), Tree Sparrow 1, Wren 1, Fieldfare 1, Songthrush 1, Green Woodpecker 1, Kingfisher 1, Sparrowhawk 1,Blue Tit (1).

Thursday, 9 February 2012


After a disappointing start to the season, I was determined to get out ringing at the weekend. Saturday morning was out due to other commitments and with the big snow event on Saturday evening the chances of getting to our site Sunday were not looking good.

Freezing cold

An early drive, on roads you could have sledged down, paid off as all the muppet drivers were still in bed. On arrival it was -9, by far the coldest I’ve ever ringed in, so I decide just the one net would suffice today. Targeting Yellowhammers at one of our large corn feeders I managed to pick off 14 more with 7 retraps from previous years. Hopefully, it’ll be cold but not quiet so cold next weekend.

18 New birds and (15 retraps) – Yellowhammer 14(7), Dunnock (4), Chaffinch 1(1), Tree Sparrow 1(1), Great Tit 1, Reed Bunting 1, Robin (1), Blackbird (1).

Saturday, 26 November 2011

Something a little different

I know this is my ringing blog. However, with it being a tad windy for a mist net today I joined Chris and a few of his students down one of our sites for a spot of mammal trapping. Of the 60 traps set overnight about half had success (numbers were apparently very good), with Wood Mouse, Bank Vole, Field Vole and Common Shrew all putting in an appearance. Unfortunately, the Harvest Mouse remained elusive.

Bank Vole

Friday, 2 September 2011

Swallow controls

On the final day of August things started well and it looked like we were going to get a proper ringing session in for a change. There were plenty of Swallows swirling around the net. But, after the good start, numbers dropped off and the rain moved in so it was yet another early night. On the plus side, we did manage to control 2 Swallows and as they were both off the same ring string I’ll be checking them with our friends at the East Dales Ringing Group prior to submitting the data to the BTO, as on occasion they ring close by.

51 New birds, [2] controls and (1) retrap – Swallow 46[2], Reed Bunting 3(1), Reed Warbler 1, Sand Martin 1.

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

July update

A busy few months so hence an update for July when we’re almost in September!

July turned out to be a funny month - It’s normal for us to be inundated with hundreds of Sand Martins but this year they just didn’t seem to turn up, or went early. Not through a lack of trying our Sand Martin tally for the year is less than some single evenings we had last year! We hear others found this too.

That said, while we didn’t get the quantity we did get the quality. Reed Buntings became our staple and Linnet often made its way into the net too. And, of course, there was much excitement when we ringed two Green Sandpiper and two Yellow Wagtail, both new for our site and ringing ticks all round for a change.

Over at our Scarborough site Dave managed a single Storm Petrel, always a dedicated achievement to catch them in Yorkshire.

Green Sandpiper

Yellow Wagtail

706 New birds in July at our Bishop Monkton sites - Green Sandpiper 2, Sand Martin 220, Swallow 130, House Martin 4, Meadow Pipit 5, Yellow Wagtail 2, Pied Wagtail 17, Wren 8, Dunnock 6, Robin 5, Redstart 2, Blackbird 5, Song Thrush 1, Grasshopper Warbler 3, Sedge Warbler 49, Reed Warbler 8, Whitethroat 46, Garden Warbler 1, Blackcap 4, Chiffchaff 14, Willow Warbler 37, Marsh Tit 3, Blue Tit 4, Great Tit 2, Treecreeper 2, Jay 1, Jackdaw 1, Tree Sparrow 3, Chaffinch 3, Greenfinch 1, Goldfinch 18, Linnet 5, Bullfinch 17, Yellowhammer 3, Reed Bunting 74.