Thursday, 12 February 2015

Patch Birding and Ringing - February 2015

I haven't had much spare time since my last post, but have managed to squeeze in one visit to Curbridge, on 9th Feb, and also one ringing session in my garden. My visit to Curbridge was another lunchtime dash and as usual I only had my Panasonic FZ200 bridge camera, just in case. The tide was rising fast and as such there was very little exposed mud left. A Greenshank was making the most of the last opportunity to feed in shallow creek water as I pulled up into the Horse and Jockey car park. I grabbed a couple of photos making use of the digital zoom, so not the best quality but a good record shot.

Greenshank - Curbridge

My regular visits to Curbridge of late have not produced any new species recently but there have been some good records. This week there was a peak count of six Greenshank, a good count for this time of year and the second time I have recorded six birds this winter, and a Common Snipe was only the second one this year. The usual fare included one Common Sandpiper, five Redshank, three Teal and a Little Egret.

Six Greenshanks - Curbridge
Common Snipe - Curbridge. A record shot on full digital zoom

There were only a handful of gulls around due to the state of the tide, which included 10 Black-headed and one adult Mediterranean Gull. It is interesting to see Mediterranean Gulls making regular appearances this year after so many years without recording them at Curbridge.

On Sunday 8th in the morning I opened a net in the garden. I only had a couple of hours before going out, but that was enough time to catch 21 birds. The majority were as expected, Blue Tits, with 10 birds trapped, the next most numerous species was Long-tailed Tit, with six birds ringed. The highlights were single Greenfinch, Goldfinch, Robin, Chaffinch and Coal Tit.

Male Chaffinch 
Tail of Male Chaffinch showing pointed tail feathers suggesting 2cy bird. 
This bird also had two retained greater coverts in the wing.
Coal Tit 

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