Friday, 21 January 2011

2010 Highlights

Another Year ends and a new begins... In a some bird watchers diary this is a time to manically start a new list for everything, not me. It's a time to reflect on a fantastic years ringing with some fantastic people.

Highlights ringing wise:

January - Watching/Helping Kane Catch 20+ Tufted duck in one day at Southport as well as catching 30 or so Coot. (We thought we'd never get the same numbers in a day again... We were wrong).

Swan Catch at Martin Mere - Always a pleasure seeing Teal, Pochard, Wigeon and Whoopers "In the hand."

February - My first Cannon netting session; Heysham power station, over 600 Oystercatchers Caught and ringed (Amazing).

March and April - Ringing ( Or scribing) at Rossall Ringing sessions due to a broken hand, But I saw plenty of decent birds in the hand. Lots of Lesser Redpoll and one Common.

May - My first Grasshopper Warbler (tape Lured) followed by accompany Kane whilst he found Long Eared Owls breeding in Manchester. All the hard work paid off and the following day I watched them get ringed, Then returned to my Local patch to find another Long Eared owl nest!

June - Black headed Gull colony with Robin Sellars, Steve Christmas, Will Price and Ian Gardener. Over 500 Black Headed gull chicks ringed in under 2 hours. A Follow up trip with Kane Brides and Chris Bridge produced another 110.

July through to August. - ICELAND.

Ringing Puffins, Kittiwakes, Fulmars, Shag, Snow Bunting, Eider, Snipe, Red necked Phalarope, Dunlin, Oystercatchers, Arctic terns, Black Guillemot, Redwings,Ringed plover, Golden Plover and last but not least Whooper Swans for nearly a month. Seeing some other amazing sites ( White Tailed Eagle really close, Great Nortern divers from above as they dive in the crystal clear water, Also hearing their Eary call. Gyr Falcons getting unbelievably close to catching Ptarmigan right next to us, and the inquisative youngsters whom let us get really close.) I had a fantastic time with 3 of the finest friends. Kane introduced us to his very welcoming Icelandic friends and they looked after us like royalty. they're fantastic people and I'm glad I met them.

August back home - Recovering, wishing I was back in Iceland.

September - Started Catching decent numbers of Coot to Colour ring. Also started ringing at Rossall again.

October - Great numbers of greenfinch dropping out of the sky straight into the net at Rossall, Also my first British Great grey Shrike. Picked up by Ian and then all the group (including a very excited Seumus). Also went Cannon netting again with SCAN in North Wales, Caught lots of Redshank, Oystercatcher, Curlew and the odd Dunlin, Knot, Lapwing, Snipe and starling (Cracking trip). Oh and held my first Waxwing (STONKER)

November - Not too much but enjoyed catching Coot still at the Park and started to get good movements from them. Please keep your eyes peeled for colourful Coot.

December - Has to be the day Kane and Ciaran caught 106 Coot in a day, Also a trip to Will's Garden with Will and Phil where we were Lucky enough(?) to catch 28 Brambling in one session. A Priveledge that I probably won't see again for a long time.

Sorry no Photo's yet... I'm going to start 2011 with an update from a recent trip to Ireland and I'll try to slip a photo in.

Let's see if 2011 can be half as good at 2010... I'm sure with a lot of effort and a bit of luck, we can improve?