Thursday, 18 August 2011

Bumbus terrestris

Heysham Obs
A rather ignominious start to the Middleton CES with a dozy worker bumble bee unknowingly attaching itself to my rear. Then I sat down in the car......................... The accident book has been duly filled in. It was a worker Bombus terrestris. It was a strange CES - over half the birds were caught on the final round of the allotted time-period, the first time this has happened here. This undoubtedly reflects the absence of any overnighting local birds or off-passage migrants (also the impression yesterday afternoon when checking the m.n. rides) and a decent arrival of new migrants gradually filtering through to the site with their mobility "helped" by the presence of small tit flocks. Shame we could not cover the Heysham N. Reserve as well as it was a nice migrant synopsis and a short visit revealed yesterday's absentee, Willow warbler, 'hoeeting' from at least two places by the office

Middleton NR CES & supplementary nets from 0545hrs
Tree Pipit - 5 SE early morning plus one SE mid-morning
Grey Wagtail - first of the autumn SE
Swift - one SE
House Martin - 6 SE
Swallow - c35 SE
Linnet/Goldfinch - mixed flock of c70
Grasshopper Warbler - male singing in the western marsh first thing, adult trapped in the central marsh and retrap juvenile trapped in the western marsh
Sedge Warbler - all migrants - none first thing but 6 caught, including control Y223110
Whitethroat - 5 ringed
Lesser Whitethroat - one ringed
Willow Warbler - probably c15 around with 8 ringed
Chiffchaff - 2 ringed
Blackcap - 2 ringed
Reed Warbler - 3 ringed

Ringing recovery
A Med Gull first seen here in 2009 was seen by Mike Baron on 14th August. The accompanying blurb from the Germans includes a fascinating account of the birds transferring from the original island, probably due to the presence of a raccoon dog and nesting on "eco-friendly" rooftops! See

Heligoland 5352010 & green darvic AHTJ
Ringed: Pionierinsel, Elbe Estuary, Hamburg, Germany: adult: 23/5/09
Seen: Preesall Sands, Knott End:          6/8-12/8/09
Seen: Heysham Power Station outfalls:   30/8 & 6/9/09
Seen:  Red Nab, Heysham:     14/8/11

Please note that the French-ringed bird seen on 3/8 was also a green darvic. Thanks for this, Mike

Marsh harrier
Juvenile south along the eastern boundary of the recording area (over the new waste centre roundabout) at 1320 (thanks Pete)

Heysham NR
Garden warbler - one seen (thanks to another Pete)

Unfortunately no known coverage of the shore today.  Anyone able to contradict this, please?

Unremarkable small catch; highlighted by Agriphila geniculea (perhaps something to do with 6.5 degrees C at 0515ish!)