Wednesday, 15 June 2011

Ringing on 1st June 2011

George was ringing again today, both at the Observatory early morning and then later on, over at the feeding station. Results were mixed but plenty of young birds were starting to appear in the scrub around the netting areas. There were 20 birds processed including 15 New birds and 5 Retraps.

  The days catch was made up thus (New/Retrap) - (3/1) Whitethroat, (0/1) Chiffchaff, (4/1) Great Tit, (3/0) Chaffinch, (3/0) Greenfinch and (2/2) Goldfinch.

With the start of June we can now start to look forward to catching lots of young birds which will rapidly start to appear all over the reserve. The quietest period of the ringing year at Gib is nearly over!

Saturday, 11 June 2011

Ringing on 31st May 2011

Today George was ringing again over at the Obs with limited results whilst over at Syke's Farm in the evening, Lynda Briggs and myself finished off the nest boxes. The result for the day was 34 birds processed including 28 New birds and 6 Retraps.

  Georges catch over at the Obs was made up of (New/Retrap) - (1/1) Dunnock and (0/5) Whitethroat.

  Whilst over at Syke's Farm in the evening, Lynda and myself ringed 3 broods of Blue Tit, 1 of Great Tit, 1 of Jackdaw and 1 of Pied Wagtail which included two birds that Tim Bagworth ringed with us.

  This resulting in (New/Retrap) - (4/0) Pied Wagtail, (15/0) Blue Tit, (6/0) Great Tit and (2/0) Jackdaw.

Also reported on the 31st May 2011 were -

x8 Manx Shearwater (North)
x1 Glaucous Gull (1st summer still around)
x2 Mediterannean Gull (Adult and 1st summer)
x1 Short eared Owl (16.45 over saltmarsh)
x1 Hobby
x1 Peregrine
x1 Buzzard
x1 Black Kite (South down the west dunes and then West at 9.30am)
x1 Golden Oriole (Imm male giving brief song then flying NorthWest out of East Dunes)
x1 Wheatear
Rosefinch - a bird heading south calling twice was probably a rosefinch?
x9 Crossbill (South)

C.E.S. No3 30th May 2011

Today was the second C.E.S. of the year and it was slowly starting to improve. I was accompanied today by visiting ringer Chris Hansell from Filey, many Thanks for your help today Chris! The first couple of net rounds were as is usual, the best ones of the day and there was time to open some of the other feeding station nets at the same time. The result was 40 birds processed including 18 New birds and 22 Retraps.

  The days catch was made up thus (New/Retrap) - (0/1) Great Spotted Woodpecker, (3/2) Dunnock, (0/1) Robin, (1/2) Lesser Whitethroat, (1/3) Whitethroat, (1/2) Blackcap, (1/0) Willow Warbler, (0/1) Great Tit, (3/3) Chaffinch, (4/2) Greenfinch, (3/5) Goldfinch and (1/0) Linnet.

  The breeding season continues to look promising but there is a long way to go yet!

Thursday, 9 June 2011

Ringing on 27th May 2011

George was again ringing at the Observatoiry this morning followed by a brief session at the feeding station. Results were not bad with 24 birds processed including 10 New birds and 14 Retraps.

  The days catch was made up thus (New/Retrap) - (3/2) Dunnock, (1/0) Reed Warbler, (1/0) Lesser Whitethroat, (2/6) Whitethroat, (0/2) Blue Tit, (1/1) Great Tit, (1/0) Jackdaw, (0/1) Greenfinch, (0/1) Goldfinch and (1/1) Reed Bunting.

  The Jackdaw is the first adult of the year and not a bird that we manage to catch that often, indeed this is only the fourth adult Jackdaw ever caught for the Observatory! They always seem to be attracted to the feeding station at this time of year and nearly always feed upon any spilt sunflower seed.

 Interestingly there was the first young Dunnock on the wing over at the Observatory, hopefully the first of many, it would look like it will be a good breeding season for most species with the exception, in this area at least of Blackbird. The extremely dry conditions must be making finding worms pratically impossible with areas of open grass being completly baked dry and most short grass being a incredible shade of brown rather than green!

  Indeed the Sea Buckthorn on the Storm Ridge is looking in particularly bad shape with the water table clearly being so low that the plants upon popping their leaves out, have simply died again. Whether they will come back from this with wetter conditions, I don't know? If not then it certainly puts the future of the Storm Ridge plants community in jeopardy!

Also Reported on the 27th May 2011 were -

x1 Spoonbill (Jacksons)
x1 Little Tern
x1 Glaucous Gull (Offshore - probably the smae as a few days ago)
x1 Storm Petrel (In from the North before landing on sea and then flying off South - probably the first Spring record for Gib!)
Various seabirds including Gannets, Fulmars, Terns and Auks active offshore in the strong winds
x2 Whimbrel
x1 Marsh Harrier
x1 Red Kite (Before 10am this morning and then over Croft Marsh heading North at 1850)
x1 Barn Owl
x1 Great Spotted Woodpecker
x1 Jay

Jackdaw ringed on the 27th May 2011 - just the fourth adult ever for the Obs!
Photo - George Gregory

Sea Buckthorn, seemingingly having died off on the Storm Ridge during May 2011.
Photo - Mick Briggs

Monday, 6 June 2011

Reported -26th May 2011

The weather was again to rough for George to risk opening any nets up to avoid any potential injury to any captured bird. The winds and the odd rare squally rain showers are really being a pain during May, hopefully by getting them out of the way now, we will not be bothered by them during the Autumn!

Reported on the 26th May 2011 were -

x23 Gannet (11 North & 12 South)
x3 Fulmar (South)
x1 Greenshank
x7 Turnstone
x1 Buzzard (In off Sea)
x19 Swift (South)
x15 Crossbill (South)

Sunday, 5 June 2011

Ringing on 25th May 2011

George was ringing today, this time at the feeding station which resulted in 14 birds processed including 6 New birds and 8 Retraps.
  The big result if the day though was the years first Collared Dove, caught at the feeding station nets. It was the first one caught since the 29th April 2008! and only the 28th ever!

  The catch was made up thus (New/Retrap) - (1/0) Collared Dove, (0/1) Blue Tit, (0/1) Great Tit and (5/6) Goldfinch.

Also reported on the 25th May 2011 were -

x1 Fulmar (South)
x2 Mediterranean Gull (South along East Dunes at 0845)
x1 Glaucous Gull (1st summer from Lill's Hut till dusk)
x1 Wheatear
x1 Honey Buzzard (Pale Adult north over Seacroft Golf Course at 1005)

Collared Dove ringed on the 25th May 2011 - the 28th for the Obs ever!
Photo - George Gregory

Collared Dove ringed on the 25th May 2011 - the 28th for the Obs ever!
Photo - George Gregory

Reported -24th May 2011

Reported on the 24th May 2011 were -

x1 Gannet (North)
x2 Great Crested Grebe (on Sea)
x3 Marsh Harrier (x1 South)
x1 Red Kite
x10 Little Tern
x7 Sandwich Tern
x8 Whimbrel
x2 Grey Heron
x3 Cuckoo
x3 Turtle Dove
x1342 Swift (South)
x49 Swallow (South)
x164 House Martin (South)
x1 Sand Martin (South)
x2 Yellow Wagtail (South)
x1 Wheatear
x1 Siskin (South)

Ringing on 22nd May 2011

Another morning spent checking nestboxes today with Dave Vincent being able taught by his Trainer Mick Briggs, how to check the Obs nestboxes that are scattered throughout the Syke's Farm area.

  This was the second visit this year and the result was 45 New birds ringed.

  These were - 22 Blue Tits from 3 Nests, 11 Great Tits from 2 Nests and 12 Jackdaws from 3 Nests

The prevailing weather conditions which have persisted throughout most of May has being windy! this is really starting to effect the ringing effort on the reserve which is usually slow during May but is now starting to drop off something chronic!

  When will the summer weather arrive?

Reported -21st May 2011

Reported on the 21st May 2011 were -

Mediterranean Gull
Little Ringed Plover
Marsh Harrier
x5 Crossbill

Ringing on 20th May 2011

  George tried he best today but with another repeat of yesterdays rough conditions, all that was caught was just 3 birds processed including 1 New bird and 2 Retraps at the Obs.

  They included (New/Retrap) - (1/1) Whitethroat and (0/1) Blackbird.

  Later in the day Tim Bagworth was handed a dead Jackdaw picked up near the Pumping Station which was wearing a ring! EW96024 was, upon checking the records, a Control from who only knows where!
  If anybody knows the origin of this bird, please as usual, let me know by email to 

Also reported on the 20th May 2011 were -

x1 Little Gull (Sub Adult on Jacksons)
x1 Mediterranean Gull (1st summer on Tennysons)
x3 Common Tern
x1 Buzzard
x1 Barn Owl
x25 Common Scoter (North)
x37 Eider
x5 Whimbrel
x152 Oystercatcher
x50 Grey Plover
x250 Bar Tailed Godwit
x2 Black Tailed Godwit
x180 Swallow (south)
Tree Sparrow

The evening Gull count included -

x424 Herring Gull
x182 Great Black-backed Gull
x13 Lesser Black-backed Gull
x322 Black Headed Gull
x2 Common Gull

Ringing on 19th May 2011

  George was back in action on the reserve today with limited results, the inclement weather is really starting to hamper any progress on the totals for the year! After an hour or two at the Obs, George moved over to the feeding station for a brief session . The total for the day was just 6 birds processed including 2 New and 4 Retraps.

  The days catch was made up thus (New/Retrap) - (0/1) Whitethroat, (0/2) Great Tit, (0/1) Chafinch, (1/0) Goldfinch and (1/0) Reed Bunting.

Reported -16th May 2011

Reported on the 16th May 2011 were -

x2 Cuckoo
Montagu's Harrier

Ringing on 15th May 2011

Today was the first day of checking nest boxes, this should be fairly straight forward as there are the lowest number of nestboxes up on the reserve that we have ever had since nestbox monitoring began 25 years ago. This was due in part to a lot of boxes (nearly half of all that were previously up) being taken down to repair damage caused by Great Spotted Woodpecker during the winter.
  During the repair time a "Woodland Walk Project" was begun by the staff at the field station which included some nest boxes, to be created by and put up by volunteers. We decided that our boxes should not go up anywhere untill after the volunteer created boxes had been erected and placed so as to not over crowd any given area.
  Even though some of the volunteer created boxes were not put up untill just a couple of weeks ago, some of them have already being occupied which amply demonstrates the clear need of the local population of hole nesting species for suitable holes in the young wood that is "Sykes Farm".

  The ringing result from checking today were two lots of nestboxes were ringed including a brood of five and a brood of 10, - both were of the Great Tit variety!

  There are plenty to go back to later on.

Also reported on the reserve today were

Montagu's Harrier
Short Eared Owl
Temminck's Stint
Turtle Dove
Yellow Wagtail

C.E.S. No2 14th May 2011

Today was the first C.E.S. (Constant Effort Site) session of the year and the result was not exactly encouraging but wasn't the worst ever. Other nets were also run at Aylmer Avenue at the same time. The day ended with 29 birds processed including 9 New and 20 Retraps.

  The catch was made up thus (New/Retrap) - (0/1) Wren, (0/1) Dunnock, (0/2) Blackbird, (1/0) Reed Warbler, (1/3) Lesser Whitethroat, (2/6) Whitethroat, (3/0) Blackcap, (1/0) Chiffchaff, (0/2) Willow Warbler, (1/1) Long Tailed Tit, (0/1) Coal Tit, (0/1) Blue Tit and (0/2) Great Tit.

  The C.E.S. session caught 9 birds of 7 species. When compared to session one last year, which included 16 birds of 7 species, it would not seem to be so good but it is still early days, we shall have to wait and see how the breeding season pans out. Notable absenses this year so far are Robin and Dunnock!

 Also reported on the 14th May 2011 were -

x8 Gannet
Great Crested Grebe
x18 Brent Goose
x22 Common Eider
x2 Common Tern
x8 Little Egret
x2 Little Ringed Plover
x28 Avocet
x75 Sanderling
x200 Grey Plover
Temminck's Stint
Spotted Flycather
Turtle Doves
Yellow Wagtail
x72 Swallow
x36 Swift (South)
Spotted Flycatcher
x4 Reed Warbler
x2 Sedge Warbler