The last week has been a busy one work wise but I have still managed to fit in a few ringing sessions. I have carried on from where last year finished with my quest for crests and have also had a couple of sessions at the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust's Swanwick Lakes nature reserve and in the grounds of the head office at Curdridge.
My quest for crests took me back to Gosport and the Wildgrounds. On the last visit I had seen at least three Firecrests, but only managed to catch one, so it was an obvious site to retry. Chris and I put three nets up and almost immediately caught a new Firecrest, we also saw a ringed bird, which was probably the bird we ringed last time, and subsequent to catching the first bird saw another un-ringed one.
|Firecrest - The Wildgrounds, Gosport|
Three new Goldcrests were also ringed at the Wildgrounds, two males and a female, so it was a successful visit to start the week.
|Female Goldcrest - Wildgrounds, Gosport|
Rob has been keeping an eye on the feeders at Swanwick Nature Reserve, and so we nipped over during the week to have a look. As it was a lunchtime visit we didn't have too much time but quickly put up a net to see what we would catch. I say that but there were never going to be any surprises given the number of Blue and Great Tits present. The lunchtime visit produced 15 birds, mainly Blue and Great Tits as suspected but also a Dunnock. The best thing about the session was the capture of a Blue Tit that had been ringed back in May as a nestling.
The next session was another lunchtime session in the grounds of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust's Beechcroft office. It was a quiet session with only four birds ringed, a Great Tit, two Nuthatches and a Firecrest, this one was a retrap from December.
|Nuthatch - Curdridge|
We were fortunate to catch one male and one female Nuthatch which provided the ideal opportunity to compare the plumage differences (see the image below).
|Nuthatches - Female left, Male right|
It was a busy session that resulted in the capture of 65 birds, most of which were Blue and Great Tits as suspected. There were a few other bits to make the session more interesting, three new Nuthatches, three Robins and a Coal Tit.
|Coal Tit - Swanwick Lakes|
So not a bad week, 88 birds ringed including two Firecrests, four Nuthatches, a Coal Tit and a Blue Tit that was ringed last summer as a nestling.