Wednesday 8 May 2013

Pre-frontal coverage highlighted by Wood warbler

Heysham Obs
An early assessment on arrival suggested a single sheltered mist net and a bit of vis mig, followed by a quick check of the sea.  In the end, the constant threat of 'proper' rain saw the net being taken down after 30 mins and the rest of the area given a bit of coverage .

Thanks to Professor David Norman for getting back to me over yesterday's close-ringed Lesser Redpoll.  The reason David was familiar with the format on the ring can be found here 

It was ringed under the auspices of the International Ornithological Association (hence IOA on the ring).  The 11 refers to 2011 along with the deep blue base colour year-code.  The IOA were in contact today and will provide a town/village location (but obviously not the private address of the aviary) for the above bird.  If anyone wants to have a look at their website access the following link:

The conversation with the IOA secretary included problems they have complying with the letter of the law re-Lesser Redpolls.  Their legal documentation refers to Carduelis flammea pre-split (which is now, of course, the separate species Common Redpoll) and the legislation has not caught up, therefore in theory they cannot legally exhibit Carduelis cabaret = Lesser Redpoll.  Maybe it will be sorted just as they are re-lumped! Thanks to IOA for getting back to us and setting in motion tracing the origin of this bird

They also confirmed that last year's close-ringed Lesser Redpoll (caught 25/3/12) was of French origin with the last two letters of the WOF code = ornithologiste francais (or spelling thereabouts!)...........but were not sure what the 'W' stood for.

Office area vis 0545-0615
Tree Pipit - 2 north
Lesser Redpoll - rather a lot but not possible to ring them this morning and a lot of the registrations were heard only.  At least 10 separate registrations including one flock of 5 and absolute minimum of 20 birds.
Reed Bunting - a very late individual flew high to the north
Goldfinch - 5 north
Swallow - 17 NE

Wood Warbler - Singing male in the copse over the road from 0605-0610 only
Willow Warbler - At least 20 migrants, seemingly including at least three males (snatches of song).  Moved rapidly inland as is typical for this species at this time of year - almost certainly several/a lot passed through prior to arrival
Chiffchaff - one presumed migrant caught

North harbour wall/Ocean Edge vis intermittently 0620-0800
Yellow (flava) Wagtail - one north 0720hrs
Swallow - 117 north along the seawall 0620-0640 but much lower numbers thereafter/the flightline changed
Sand Martin - 2 north
Whimbrel - noisy flock of 16 heading north at 0640, 2 singles thereafter
Goldfinch - 6 north
No terns or any other seabirds seen in flight!

Wheatear - 4 together by the sandworks 0620, flew inland along the seawall, just 2 on Ocean Edge.  All 'large'
Whinchat - female heliport area
Willow warbler - two on the mound in the gorse
Turnstone - c260 - very noisy and restless and may have included some incoming migrants
Guillemot - one on the sea