Sunday, 4 February 2018


It was -3 degrees and dark when we arrived at 06:45 to start setting the nets up for our first New Year session one of our local sites. The feeders are filled frequently over the winter period to make sure our on site breeding birds are kept in tip-top condition for the season ahead.

Our on-site fly-thru selection keeps our resident birds from going hungry over the winter.
As usual the the first round is always pretty slow to start with, 5 birds caught, a re-captured Wren that was ringed on 26/03/17....the first 2 of 10 new Blackbirds of the morning were also caught....this is the most Blackbirds that have been caught in a morning session on site, there must have been a fall of Blackbirds the night before as the site was holding much more than we usually see or catch.

The next round would have also been pretty quiet if there wasn't a small family of Long-tailed tits visiting the fat balls on one of our net rides - 6 of them caught altogether 3 new and 3 re-traps which were ringed together back on 13/11/2016, always good to know that they have survived a couple of years together. A Treecreeper was also in amongst this catch which was ringed as a juvenile on CES visit 5 in June 2017.

As the sun started to come through and the mist lifted the subsequent rounds brought out a lot more Blue, Coal & Great was pleasing once again to re-capture our oldest bird of the day - a male Great tit, ringed in August 2014, hopefully he's back on site to put claim to a nest box with the female we caught in the same net, she was ringed in November 2016?

Our last round of the day produced the star of the day....A male Great-spotted finger pecker. This bird was a recent addition to the database, he was ringed at our ringing session that we had with East Lothian Council junior rangers back in November, as you can see if you take your eye of him for one minute while holding him, he'll thank you nicely for supplying a never ending source of suet and peanuts for it to feed on, I suppose it didn't draw too much blood!


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