Monday, 27 February 2012

Twenty One

As the week draws to a close I reflect on what has been 'one to remember'. The title of this post refers to not only the amount of new birds caught this week but also a coming of age. My 21st Birthday was mid-week with a party at the weekend therefore reasonably little effort was put in to ringing.

Various outings with Heather and one with Ciaran yielded a mixed bag species wise.

1st - 8 Blue Tit
2nd - 3 Herring Gull
3rd - 2 Black-Headed Gull

The others made up of Great Tit, Dunnock, Coal Tit, Long-tailed Tit, Coot and a Mallard.

Another trip down to Fairhaven and a Norwegian Metal ringed Black-headed Gull was seen, along with the Norwegian colour ringed bird from earlier in the week.

A couple of Coot ringed outside the Fylde were seen this week too; all ringed at Southport by Kane.

A trip out with Seumus on Saturday Morning. A full report of proceedings can be found at

A big thanks to Heather and Ciaran for making this weeks' ringing thoroughly enjoyable.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

Gulling around.

Earlier in the week I met up with several other members of Fylde Ringing Group in the hope of catching and ringing some Turnstone ahead of a Colour-marking project we hope to start soon. The birds were not playing ball at all. We failed to catch any.

Eager to ring a couple of birds, myself and Ian, spurred on by the recent C permit approvals made our way to a local park to try to grab a gull or two. We waited and watched a man mobbed by Herring Gulls whilst he fed them only to try ourselves and have all the birds disappear.

We ended the morning birdless.

In the Afternoon I again tried to catch birds, this time at my prime ringing spot, Stanley Park. Here the birds are fed by passers by and their children all day, everyday so the birds here are more used to scraps of bread!

With many birds showing interest in my offerings I decided I would pick a particular bird and catch it. Having so much choice doesn't happen often so you have to take your opportunities. The result; one very angry handful.

1st Winter Herring Gull

I also managed to catch 1 Black-headed Gull and 1 Coot before having to clean up and go to work.

Wednesday again a free hour around lunchtime I decided to try my luck at Fairhaven. Far too windy to catch birds by hand today as they were coming no way near close. Instead I had an audience, the audience included the birds below.

JON8 was first ringed in Oslo, April 2011

It has spent the winter 2011/12 around Fairhaven Lake 1078 Km away from it's original ringing site.


I am,as yet unsure of the origins of this bird (The same project maybe)

It just goes to show how much you can do in 1 hour and how valuable colour-ringing is to the re-sighting of ringed birds.

Sunday, 19 February 2012

This week.

This week has been much of the same, with trips to the park and in my urban garden I managed to catch only 21 new birds.

1 Black-Headed Gull
1 Coot
1 Robin
5 Blue Tit
8 Great Tit
4 Long-tailed Tit
1 Starling

A big thanks must go to "her indoors", Heather, who not only puts up with my work but often assists with the scribing and catching on various ventures.

Today was spent at the Northwest Ringers' Conference (Along with the other members of Fylde Ringing Group)where we heard fantastic talks from various people regarding ringing in the North West. It's fantastic to hear such talks and you always come away with more questions than you went with, also some new found enthusiasm. It was great to meet some new people and talk to some whom I've not seen for years.

Unfortunately I wasn't as lucky as fellow group members in the raffle, but there'll be a next time. Massive thanks to North Lancs Ringing group for hosting the day and for Seumus who drove.

Monday, 13 February 2012

Continued cold.

With the cold weather from last week looking like it would stay for a while there was continued effort to catch a few birds. This week, time was spent at Stanley Park and Fairhaven lake mainly with 35 new birds being captured either in traps or by hand.

11 Blue Tit
2 Great Tit
1 Long-tailed Tit
1 Robin
5 Starling
1 Mallard
6 Coot
8 Black-Headed Gull

In addition to the birds caught there was also a few noteworthy sightings, 4 Colour-ringed Coot at Fairhaven on the 9th all came from outside the Fylde but as yet we are yet to hear where they were originally ringed. Also 2 or 3 from Stanley park have been ringed elsewhere.

2 Black-headed Gull Darvics were read this week, one from Norway (Fairhaven Lake bird) and 1,White-VLJ from Denmark, returning for it's 5th Winter to Stanley park. It's always worth checking a roosting flock of gulls for darvics or metal rings as they are very often readable and there's many projects within Northern Europe where birds are being colour ringed, one within the North West of England has been started by Kane Brides.

Besides grabbing and trapping, this weekend I joined Seumus and set out to Rawcliffe Moss feeding station where we erected 2 nets. A nice morning was had with catch of 36 birds, 14 were recaptures but all of this data is worthwhile. 10 Yellowhammers were the undoubted highlight. For more see

This year has got off to a flying start with over 450 birds already ringed, comparable with this time last year when only 290 new birds had been ringed. Our success this year is probably down to increased effort and better weather. Hopefully our luck continues...

Remember, please look out for birds with rings on when you are out and about as it really is useful to hear about any birds sighted. Any colour ringed Coot sighted can be sent to Kanebrides'@'

Sunday, 5 February 2012

Back in action.

First of all a belated Happy new year to all, I really don't get much time to sit and blog so apologies for that.

After returning from Sweden it's been a bit of a wait to get going catching birds again. Trips to see people and lots of catching up was done so really ringing was put to the side.

In late december however a flurry of activity, I managed to catch a few half decent birds. Coot, 3 Herring Gull, 8 Black-Headed gull and some Mallard all added to the numbers and finally the Fylde ringing totals for 2011 stood at 4470 New birds. This is thanks to a big effort from the other guys.

Starting 2012 was a bit slow, a trip to Ireland put me out of action for some time and along with applying for jobs and catching up ringing was again put on the side. A lot of time and thought has been put into trying to catch Turnstone around the Fleetwood area and as of today 50 New birds have been ringed this winter; also a nice control of an Icelandic bird.

The group ended January on 317 new birds for the month and with Phil and myself our of action for a few weeks and the weather not really aiding netting this is a respectable number. Highlights of the month included a hand caught Tufted Duck at Stanley Park and a Collared dove which was tempted into the trap.

February saw an increased effort and a few Starlings, Herring Gulls, Black-Headed Gull, Coot, Turnstone and a new species for the ringing group - Pink-footed goose were caught at various locations.

There has been some debate about the origin of this Pink-foot after there being an injured individual there for some years, however this is not the same bird and having seen it fly in and out of the park on a number of occassions it provides a nice species "tick" for the group.

for the year total's so far see