Saturday, 1 September 2012

Titchfield Haven Bird Ringing 1st September 2012 Update

At last things appear to be almost back to normal this week as we caught a massive 113 Grasshopper Warblers, with the best day being 41 on 26th August, followed by 33 on 31st August. This now brings our total for the year to date, to 241 new birds, which represents the 6th highest total at the haven ever. Sedge warbler was the most numerous species captured, but only just, with 123 new birds ringed, which brings our total for this species to 483 new birds, plus two controls. One of the controls was a French ringed bird, but it will probably take a while before we hear exactly where it came from! Reed Warbler numbers continued to trickle along with 29 new birds ringed, bringing the total for the year to 223, and a further 20 Willow Warblers were added to the total. We were discussing the decline of Willow Warblers today, and decided to look back at the ringing totals, the peak year was in 1981, when 260 new birds were ringed, to date we have only ringed 83, and with the peak migration for this species usually being during August, we will be lucky if we catch 120 birds this year.

Juvenile Lesser Whitethroat (B S Duffin)

Other species captured this week included Blackcap (17), Whitethroat (14), Garden Warbler (4) and Chiffchaff (2), but the star bird award this week, went to the first Lesser Whitethroat of the year, which was captured on 31st August.

Juvenile Lesser Whitethroat (B S Duffin)

This species is something of a rarity at the haven these days and we are lucky if we catch two or three in a year, which is a far cry from the mid 90's when double figures would have been common place.

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