Friday, 15 June 2018

Session cancelled

Please note the ringing session for Saturday 16th June is cancelled due to rain and wind forecast in the morning.

Saturday, 9 June 2018

Signs of a good Reed Warbler breeding season

This morning a small team from the Group took advantage of the tides of the River Axe  to set a few nets in the reeds close to the Seaton Tramway. Expecting a low number of birds the team were surprised to catch 23 of which 20 were Reed Warblers with one each of a Reed Bunting, Blackbird and Blue Tit.

Monday, 4 June 2018

Many juveniles now to be found

Breeding is well underway with the majority of the 57 birds caught today being juveniles. Four were Kestrel pulli which was a nice surprise and good experience for the trainee ringer present. This brood was one of two on the Wetlands and so far not subject to predation. The other birds comprised of 14 species including Reed Warblers, and a female Whitethroat with a brood patch. The area worked was not in the busy public area.

Miriam with one of the Kestrel chicks

Photograph by Lesley Clarke

Wednesday, 23 May 2018

Colyford Common catch

Today the Group ventured onto Colyford Common to ascertain the movement of birds and those that were breeding. The reeds indicated breeding Reed Warblers as expected, resulting in seven of which five were in breeding activity. A Lesser Whitethroat thought initially a control turned out to have been ringed on the nearby Colyton WWTW on 1st May this year. A lovely male Bullfinch was caught as well as a family of Goldfinches. Most of the birds were shown to be in breeding activity.  In all 30 birds of 11 species were processed.

First spring Male Bullfinch (Photo Mike Tyler)

Wednesday, 9 May 2018

Reed and Sedge Warblers moving in

Working today on the Seaton Wetlands, both ringing birds and conducting surveys revealed there were good numbers of Reed and Sedge Warblers. This was particularly so with Sedge Warblers. Although we only caught five many could be heard singing. Top of the poll today were Reed Warblers with 12 birds out of a total of 30 of ten species. Not too many birds, but a steady flow throughout the morning.

Sedge Warbler

Male Reed Bunting

(Photos Mike Tyler)

Saturday, 28 April 2018

More migrants arriving.

Despite the cold weather in March followed by warm weather this month migrants are now catching up with their movements. Today the Group had a reasonable catch of 33 birds of 11 species. Of these more than half were migrants including, eight Sedge Warblers, six Reed Warblers one Chiffchaff and three Blackcaps. Seeing and hearing them suggesting that summer is not far away.

Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Student visit

Today with the wet start was hardly an inducement to conduct a ringing session. It was agreed to start an hour later and we were lucky to enjoy the best weather for several days. This session was important to the Group as we were hosting students from the University Centre Reaseheath, Cheshire. The Ringing Group had been approached to enable them to have an "hands on" experience as part of their ecology and environmental modules.

We were really pleased they found the session informative and enjoyable. They had practicable experience in identification, ringing, and taking biometrics of 28 birds of ten species. The care that is needed to identify the sex of Reed Buntings during the winter and early spring was drawn to their attention. So a very pleasing moment for the Group which has now hosted two groups within nine days.

A happy student group


A pair of Reed Buntings caught together (male on the right)
Photographs Mike Tyler